The people of this community have come together time and time again in many difficult circumstances and I am asking for your kindness and generosity to help another one of our Wawa families. Phyllis, Dan and Jessica Dwyer have been fighting the battle against cancer together and it has been a long, difficult road. Phyllis has been a patient at the Lady Dunn Health Centre for the past two months, having been in the hospital in Sault Ste. Marie for months prior. The Health Travel Grant although helpful, does not cover the costs incurred when having to stay out of town for weeks at a time. Dan has used up all of his vacation days and sick time from work, having been very ill himself over the past few years. Although he wants to be by Phyllis’ side, he must leave her every week in order to ensure he earns a wage to pay for their expenses. This family NEEDS to be together at this time and the only way we can help them is to alleviate some of the financial burden. Jessica returned home to be with her parents at the time of Phyllis’ first diagnosis, having put her pursuit of post secondary education in Ottawa on hold, because her family was her first priority. This is a family who keeps things private, but they have agreed to share their story in the hopes it will help them to have more time together.
Jessica shared these comments with me when I asked her to explain their situation. “They say when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. but when life gives your hurdles you jump over them no matter how weak, tired, exhausted, pained, heartbroken you are. life is about choices and we choose to be strong together. my mom has been through so much and the battle isn’t over yet, from being diagnosed with breast cancer 2 years ago and being in and out of the hospital with countless of appointments and tests to therapy (chemotherapy, and radiation) and now being diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic bone cancer, and having the cancer spread to her back, pelvis and ribs is something we thought we’d never have to hear. I pray, wish and hope that everyone can keep my mother in your prayers, pray for her health, pray that she can continue to be strong, being back home was the best thing I could’ve done. being here as a family makes us stronger. mom I love you so much and we’re all here for you. I hate to burden anyone especially with money, but having myself and my father working full time not being able to spend time with my moms during her final days, is unbelievably hard. we would love to spend every minute with her but our jobs are making it harder to do so, with my father being out at work, an hour and a half away for a week in (in the bush) with the overwhelming amount of bills that are due every month and the debt we have taken on, from doctor visits in the sault (nightly stays), to travelling back and forth while she’s been in and out of the hospital in the sault and here in wawa, we are painfully not able to take time off to spend with her. My mom is the strongest, most determined woman i know. After falling ill, not being able to take care of herself without medical attention, she was admitted to the hospital here in wawa, where she has been bed bound for 2 months. She has been diagnosed with terminal cancer, something that will never be curable, but as long as week keep our spirits high, nothing else matter”.
We never know what life has in store for us, so the best we can do is to love each other and appreciate the time we have together.