Five hundred, twenty-five thousand, six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure a year?………Seasons of Love, from Rent
Our friend Diyar is measuring in love every minute of her son Peshawa’s life. In January of this year, 2020, doctors found an almond-sized tumor intertwined in Pesh’s brain stem. Since mid-January, Pesh’s five hundred, twenty-five thousand, six hundred minutes have been a mixture of weekly chemo treatments, physical therapy sessions, speech therapy sessions, blood transfusions, neuropathy, dehydration, nausea, and a few good days of playing, laughing, and….dancing.
This sweet little guy is five years old. Pesh loves cars and trucks, swimming in a little wading pool, learning about science, doing puzzles, playing with sand. He is a small boy with a huge heart, uncommon wisdom, and immense courage. His mom, Diyar, has that same huge heart. She is determined that Pesh’s life -for all the moments he is able to have- will be measured in love.
For Diyar, this season of love has meant giving up her job, spending countless hours in the hospital, advocating for her son, creating strategies for helping Pesh tolerate chemo, lessening his fear (and hers); encouraging him to drink and eat, holding Pesh close while he falls asleep. For Diyar, this season of love includes Perihan, Pesh’s two year old sister, who eagerly waits for Diyar and Pesh to come home from chemotherapy.
For this family, one set of minutes stopped with Pesh’s diagnosis and surgery, and another set of minutes started. Diyar’s husband left the family; Diyar became the person who carried everything for the family. For a time, Diyar was able to continue being paid before her employment ran out. In January, a small GoFundMe Account was started to cover the family’s bills and needs until the course of Pesh’s treatment became clear: 58-60 chemotherapy infusions, of which he has done about half.
We are starting this new GoFundMe account to give Diyar a Season of Love—525,600 minutes of financial support, prayers, and hope, so that Diyar may focus all her time and energy on Pesh’s treatments, and on raising her children. Diyar has no income at present; since February, she has been living off funds raised from the first campaign, along with support from family and friends. Those of us who have been Diyar’s colleagues approached her recently about starting this campaign; we wanted to give others a chance to support this family.
Diyar, in turn, is working on videos to help other families with children manage serious issues related to chemotherapy. For those of you who may wonder, Diyar is from Kurdistan. She is no stranger to struggle and adversity; Diyar grew up in a refugee camp before her family was able to come to the United States. She comes from a large Kurdish family, who do what they can to help and support her.
Diyar and Pesh (and Perihan too) do what they can too. Every day they pray for all the children dealing with cancer; every day they pray for the world; every day they try to bring joy into the lives of others: Diyar brings treats to the staff in the chemo clinic; Pesh offers kindness to other children, gives love to his family, and does his dance of grace. We ask for your help to give Diyar, Pesh, and Perihan a Season of Love. Many thanks.
If you would like to learn more about Pesh and his journey, please check out his mom’s social media pages.
Facebook: Diyar Abdulkader
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