Monday, April 12, 2010

"Satisfy Your Cravings, But Don't Over-Satisfy Them" (Owain Update)

It seems like it was so long ago that we learned that Woodland Park graduate Owain, now a 4th grader, has leukemia, but it's only been a couple weeks. I'm sure for his family it all feels like yesterday. His father Alex writes on their CaringBridge page that the name Owain means "young warrior," and he is clearly living up to that name. Still, I was moved by this exchange he had with his grandmother:

Him: "I feel awful. Everyone keeps telling me I have to be brave." 
Her: "Not always. Sometimes you get to be a little kid having a rough time."

I guess that's when the rest of us have to be brave for him.

His chemotherapy is going well and all his numbers are headed in the right direction. Alex says he's also been able to talk about his fears of death and losing his friends which is a very healthy thing. Owain's last couple posts have had a lot to do with food -- apparently the steroids have a notoriously stimulative effect on appetite. Here's what he had to say a couple of days ago:

Hey guys. I felt cruddy all day. I started to shape up a bit though - I am starting to feel a little bit better. I gorged myself on Italian food today. I don't know if that's good or bad. It was good for my taste buds but bad for my stomach. I was feeling kind of overful, but I am alright now. I am going to try to get a good night's sleep. Here are my top food cravings:

1. Ivar's fish and chips, king size!

2. Cheetos

3. Macaroni and cheese (shells, of course)

That's pretty much it. So those are my cravings. Everybody I am trying to be strong for you. If you get this, here's my advice: stay strong, and satisfy your cravings, but don't over-satisfy them, because if you over-satisfy them, you'll feel crappy for the rest of the day.

Thank you for all the time and effort you put into these notes. Some of them really make me feel warm inside. You guys are the strongest army I could ever hope to have.

Just remember: we will kick cancers something not printable! [yes, that's exactly what he said]

Sincerely, Owain
If you feel so moved, head on over to his CaringBridge page and leave a message. Donna and Sherry from Irrisistible Ideas for Play-Based Learning not only left a message, but also gave blood. Alex says Owain looks forward to these messages and is very proud that he inspired someone from halfway around the world.

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Unknown said...

I will go and leave a message at once. I hope he kicks cancers {something not printable} as well! What a great kid!

Jason, as himself said...

Owain sounds like a fantastic kid. Such wisdom at such a young age!

And yes, he is totally right. He should be allowed to be scared and upset about his illness, for goodness sake. Sometimes people, in an effort to be helpful, make fighting cancer harder than it should be.

Unknown said...

I left Owain a message, too. My heart goes out to all you who know this brave boy. I love grandma's advice~he is lucky to have her in his corner!