We have created a space on our website to share stories and to honour the experiences of children with childhood cancer and their families. They are our stories too, as parents of children who have been diagnosed with childhood cancer.
These stories are important because they help those around us to understand the full extent of living with childhood cancer – the fear, anxiety sadness and pain, but also the hope, friendships and community.
All of the children featured here are heroes but we wanted to create a special space for children who have passed away – our Gold Ribbon Angels. We remember those who have died with love always.
Thank you to all of the families who have trusted us with their words and precious photographs.
A Pair of Shoes
I am wearing a pair of shoes.
They are ugly shoes.
I hate my shoes.
Each day I wear them, and each day I wish I had another pair.
Some days my shoes hurt so bad that I do not think I can take another step.
Yet, I continue to wear them.
I get funny looks wearing these shoes.
They are looks of sympathy.
I can tell in others eyes that they are glad they are my shoes and not theirs.
They never talk about my shoes.
To learn how awful my shoes are might make them uncomfortable.
To truly understand these shoes you must walk in them.
But, once you put them on, you can never take them off.
I now realize that I am not the only one who wears these shoes.
There are many pairs in the world.
Some people are like me and ache daily as they try and walk in them.
Some have learned how to walk in them so they don’t hurt quite so bad.
Some have worn the shoes so long that days will go by before they think about how much they hurt.
No one deserves to wear these shoes.
Yet, because of these shoes I am a stronger person.
These shoes have given me the strength to face anything.
They have made me who I am.
I will forever walk in the shoes of a parent of a child diagnosed with cancer.