One of the first topics we teach in 2nd grade social studies is the concept of community. We explain how each child is part of many different communities. This year my teaching will really have new meaning.

Since Ava’s diagnosis in July we have been supported by so many people it has made me realize how large our community is and how we truly part of so many communities. I’ve also realized that the saying it takes a village is 100% true. Also true? Each of communities has really showed up for Ava, our family, and so many other cancer children. As we near the end of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month our community has really rallied behind our Alex’s Lemonade Stand team. Check out all the amazingness we’re blessed to be apart of…

This upcoming week our old school Holy Redeemer, Ellie’s school Clarksburg Elementary, and my school Brown Station Elementary will be having Gold Day to bring awareness to childhood cancer. Each school will also be doing something different to benefit kids with cancer. For example my school will be collecting coloring books and supplies to donate to Johns Hopkins Pediatric Oncology Unit. You’d be amazed how quickly children internalize the news that someone they know has cancer and how fast they want to do something about it.

Last night HR also hosted an Alex’s Lemonade Stand for our Poopy Place Adventures Team. Since Ava only had a systemic chemo treatment she felt well enough to go and got to enjoy some time with her old classmates. Even though are kids left HR when we moved to Clarksburg it’s never stopped being part of our community. I’ve spoke before about the bond Ava has with the girls she went to school with from PreK-6th grade. The parents of 2019 are also equally special to us. Not to mentions the HR teachers are some my best friends too. I’m not sure what I’d do without my HR family.

Though we’ve only been in Clarksburg for two years we’ve definitely felt the love here too. One of Ellie’s good friends has a painted rock shop that she sets up with Montgomery County’s Children’s Business Fair and today she will be selling Childhood Cancer Awareness Rocks! This is a 4th grader raising money to help kids with cancer. How cool is that?

This week alone a fellow Clarksburg resident brought my family dinner while I was at back to school night. I’ve never met this kind soul, but boy did she help us out on one of the busiest nights of the year! One of the first friends I made when we moved into our neighborhood was Melissa. She is my rockstar bilingual sub and such an amazing friend. She is currently hosting a Beauty Counter Party with all the proceeds going to our Alex’s Lemonade Stand. If you’ve ever been interested in trying safe and clean beauty products this is a good time to do it. When Ava was sick from December through when we were in our first two inpatient, end of August, stays I had breakout after breakout. I’m sure it was the stress and the fact I barely had time to brush my teeth let alone wash my face. Anyway I started using their new CounterTime line and my skin has really cleared up a lot. Use safer products and help kids with cancer, win-win!

My Brown Station community has also been most supportive. The faculty is made up of some of the most caring people I’ve ever met. Love my girl and always ask about her. It’s so funny to me how often they remember something I’ve shared about my kiddos and ask about it later on. These are the people who help me when I’m out all of the sudden. The ones who check on me throughout the day. The ones who take my husband out to decompress and the ones who send home treats for my kids out of nowhere. This week I had a student and her lovely parents send me breakfast.

So many of my coworkers have joined our Alex’s Lemonade Stand team and raised money for childhood cancer. My good friend Catherine is fundraising through her Tastefully Simple Party for Alex’s Lemonade Stand. You can rest assured I ordered enough Twisty Graham’s to get us through the next couple months. I’m also super excited for their chai drink! You can checkout her party Here

This was a good week for Ava. She’s been home since Saturday and has been feeling pretty well. She’s made up all the class work she missed while being in the PICU last week and even got a head start on next week. I was so excited when she told em exhausted after PT because it means she was able to do the work to regain her strength. Last Saturday she was able to ride in a limo and see the Washington Spirit play the Seattle Reign and Megan Rapinoe. The limo ride was thanks to new friends in our MoCo community. Last night she was able to visit with her HR friends and today her Clarksburg friends are coming over to the house. Her unexpected visit to the PICU taught us that we must take advantage of the good days because you never know when a bad day will hit.

Look on Google and the second definition of community is a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals. I’m convinced the best way to minimize the bad days is to find cures for Childhood Cancers. I’m also convinced our community is joining us. It is our common goal.