On February 4th, Caden and his family received the life changing news that Caden had a rare and rapid growing cancer, Undifferentiated Embryonal Sarcoma of the liver. There has only been 150 documented cases around the world of this specific cancer.
I have followed Caden’s journey as his Mom has shared the ups and downs of fighting this vicious monster on their family blog. I have been amazed at both Caden’s strength, his Mom’s, and their family’s. Their faith has been strong, they have been optimistic, and they have born the unbearable.
It is heart wrenching to see the very visible effects of cancer and chemotherapy. Some things people deal with are internal and we don’t know or understand all that they are dealing with, although we still don’t fully understand, the side effects of chemotherapy are obvious and apparent. I don’t know how anyone endures it! Caden really is a superhero!
Caden’s Mom saw this on a friends Facebook,”Sometimes Superheroes reside in the heart’s of small children fighting big battles.”
Caden has been fighting a big battle and he is no doubt a SUPERHERO!!!
Stephanie’s blog is FULL of amazing, inspiring, and thought provoking thoughts. I want to share a couple…
CANCER WILL NEVER WIN:
“Cancer is ugly. Cancer is life-changing. Cancer hurts everyone so different, those that have it and those that watch. It takes people that don’t deserve it. It steals so much more than life. During these last few months, we’ve witness Caden suffer through the battle of Chemo. We seen his war, cheered each battle, and prayed for a victory over death. But, through these tender moments of conversation, when Caden’s spirit talks to my heart, I realize something much greater. If Cancer were to take my son, like so many others that didn’t deserve it, it wouldn’t mean that helost the fight, that Cancer had won. Cancer hasn’t conquered his love, his compassion, his humor, his wisdom, his spirit, or his faith. It hasn’t stolen his smile, his laughter, or the curiosity that makes Caden so wonderful. And just like the words from Cinderella, “And through it all, he’s remained ever-loving and kind.” Cancer will never win! Because Caden has already won.” – Stephanie
I love this! People don’t ever lose the battle to cancer when they pass away. Cancer is never victorious! It may overcome the body, but it never overcomes the spirit! The people inside that body are fighters! They are victorious because of their courage, their strength, and their will power!
WITHOUT THIS TRIAL, I WOULDN’T HAVE SEEN:
Stephanie wrote, “Without this trial, I wouldn’t have seen Caden’s faith, courage, compassion, hope, strength, charity, or determination. I wouldn’t have had months of one-on-one time to seriously get to know his heart, mind, and personality. I know him so well now. And he knows me. I wouldn’t have seen the resilience of my other kids. Their strength during these hard and unexpected times. Their deep love for their older brother. Both Caden and Jesus Christ. I wouldn’t see their courage as they watched their brother change from health to anti-health. Their compassion as they witnessed his feeding tube and not once made mean or embarrassing comments about it. I wouldn’t have seen the MANY people come together to support us. The manager that gave a table of six a free meal. Who brought Caden candy, a movie ticket, and a free hour of arcade where he had a memorable experience of being the popular kid that won 7 times. Or the woman that saw Caden as we drove past her as she was coming out of the bank, followed us in to Safeway, told me she was stalking us and slipped money into my purse. Her son had been in the hospital for 114 days. She said he was all better now, running around a baseball field without signs he’d ever been sick. She asked Caden how he was doing, told him good luck on his last Round, and left without buyin a single item from Safeway. The money she gave was a $100 dollar bill. Caden asked if I thought she would head straight back to the bank. That $100 was used, in part, to purchase all those delicious calories from the vending machine last week. People have come forward and given us a beautiful memory. One that rivals any artist’s masterpiece. Something that we all can see, but also feel. Something that was hidden in a disgusting, ugly, no-one-wants ‘case.'”
Stephanie has been an example of making delicious lemonade out of rotten lemons. It is a gift to be able to see the good in something so trying. I love hearing about the tender mercies God has placed in their lives to help them endure, and for all the people that have left imprints in their hearts! It helps me have a more optimistic perspective on life and its daily challenges. It also reminds me the importance of being an instrument in God’s hands. You never know when he will use you to life those that hang low. God never leaves us alone!
DEFEATED THE MONSTER:
Stephanie shared, “The PET Scan showed the most exciting news of all. On February 7th, the fast-acting, rapidly-dividing cells around the tumor lit up like those of the brain, esophagus, and bladder. On April 22nd, there was no color at all. The tumor is dead. There are no living Cancer cells in his body. The tumor, while still large and ever-present, is dead. And scheduled to be removed in just two weeks!!! All of his suffering, vomiting, days of feeling miserable, and time away from home, friends, school, and childhood have paid off. All of the hourly visits from nurses, doctors, and CNA’s have born fruit. That tumor is 100% dead!! And just like David with Goliath, Caden faced his massive opponent with courage and faith, and won. The part of that story that I have never thought of till now is the fact that Goliath had to be removed after his death. Man, what a task that must have been. We’ll face a similar task on May 7th (when he undergoes surgery to remove the tumor). But just like that story, we are only going to remember his victorious battle, the one where he advances as champion. So… Here’s to Caden, the extraordinary boy that defeated a monster!!!”
After 12 grueling weeks of chemotherapy, our superhero is home! Caden, thank you for inspiring us to do hard things! You are in our prayers! You really are an extraordinary champion!
Follow Caden’s journey at http://randydirksfamily.blogspot.com
Story written by: Lindsey
This story appeared first on Real Imprints.