July 16, 2004

i woke up early yesterday and started my daily routine of surfing the blogs. i went to a favorite blog expecting to read the usual and felt a huge lump in my throat grow as i read. rudy’s son sam had an unexplained fever for a week, turns out it’s leukemia. sam is five years old. *big sigh*

i’ve never even met this family, but i am so, so sad. i call my sister who is a friend of rudy’s- she starts to cry. we have to do something, anything, what can we do…this is my family culture. jen immediately posts on her very big blog and sets up a paypal acct. for this family. they run a school for inner city kids in l.a., i’m guessing they could really use the cash.


josiah wakes up and asks what’s going on…


” i have a friend who’s name is sam and he’s really sick in the hospital.”

“is he a big boy like jared (josiah’s pre-teen cousin)?”

“no buddy, he’s a little boy like you.”

“like me mama?”

“yeah, he has to have a lot of shots, it’s a really hard time.”

“oh mama, it’s gonna be a long week.”

“yeah, i think so, i feel sad ya know?”

“he’s not by himself mama, jesus is with him.”

“that’s true.”

“talk it mama, talk it right now mama, to jesus.”

“you wanna ask jesus to help sam?”

“yeah mama,  you say it okay?”


so we prayed. i asked josiah if he thought there was anything we could do for sam. he suggested legos so we went to target to put a box together. we walked the aisles and josiah was deep in thought about what would be good for sam while kinda struggling over the fact that there would be nothing for him on this target trip. all i could think about was how everything has changed for rudy, kafi and sam. they can’t go back, they didn’t choose this, it just happened. yesterday their little boy just had a fever and today sam could be battling for his little life.


i can’t really get out of this funk, i feel so bad. everything else seems so small. it feels wrong to go on with regular life when someone else is watching his little boy have a spinal tap, bone marrow biopsy and a pic line put in. i just can’t imagine… and i was just complaining about having to play kitty-cat for the last four years. all is well in my world, my kid doesn’t have cancer.


before i became a teacher i had aspirations of becoming a child life specialist (kinda a play therapist for hospital kids) but there were very few programs at the time. all the universities were too far away so i opted to go local and become a teacher. i can not imagine being a cls now, especially after having kids. when i interned in high school most of the cls’s were young professionals- without families yet. the thing is, i know i could have done it and done it well. part of me still wonders if this isn’t something in my future. in times like this i am drawn towards that work. i know what to do but it just feels so much more personal when it’s someone you know, even if you only know them on the internet. not to mention the fact that you have your own four year old sitting across from you at the dinner table every night. sweet, sweet sam…


so today we will make cards, and prepare a box. in the end it’s a selfish good deed- our intense need to do something to ease our own sadness and pain while we pass down the family culture of comfort and care during hard times. sam is still sick in his bed and rudy will carry a burden no father should have to carry. but like josiah said, “he’s not by himself mama, jesus is with him.”

please be with them jesus, please come.



4 Responses to “sam”

  1. Urban Mama Says:

    Hi Pache, We can join in on the monthly encouragement. After having a prenatal scare just today about my baby’s health, I cannot even begin to imagine what they’re going through.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    pache, this is such a beautiful post with such good writing.
    keep going. you have so many good things to say and a beautiful way of saying them.

  3. patience Says:

    sandie, so glad you are joining in. it’s kinda good to have people you know share in this. i’m so glad your baby is okay! phew, huh? i have a new appreciation for health.

    jen, thanks for the encouragement, although i have to say it feels a little mom-esque but i will try to graciously receive it. thank you for listening to my perpetual self-esteem issues!

  4. Simi Says:

    Gosh. So sorry to hear about Sam. I don’t know how to react– it’s the kind of news that must hit any mother so deeply, even when it’s someone you don’t know. We’ll certainly be thinking of him and his family and keeping them close to our hearts. Josiah has such a wonderful heart…

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