Itzhak Perlman used two canes to plop into his seat. He took a very long time to reach the stage. Polio took his mobility but not his genius.
He sat down and the first violinist handed him a century's old Stradivarius. He alerted the orchestra and they began to play. A bit of Bach. If you closed your eyes, you could see the ball room and the big dresses and the smokey candles. We were transformed for those few minutes to a another world. A world we dream about but really would not want to inhabit. It was cold and hard and children died of simple colds. Women died in childbirth and only the rich had enough to eat. Hard hard world.
I am hoping sometime in the future, people will listen to the music of John Williams and remember a time when children were hooked up to machines and poisoned
to try and cure them of Cancer. They will look back at this time and shake their heads and wonder how baffled we must have been. How hard it must have been for us to put our children in the hands of such barbaric spells and cures in the name of science and more life. We look at the machines and the labs and endless tests and hope for healing. This is the best we have "for now".
When you are in the middle of Cancer World you can not have a breakthrough come fast enough. It can not come with enough alacrity. The entire process seems to drag on forever. It is hard to see how far we have come because we are in the middle of it. It is hard to see that progress is being made, at all. We only see that our children are suffering and we are not able to do anything about it.
Today is the day Pearl Anne and Ellie Mae's life giving stem cells were infused into Mary-Elizabeth. It was three years ago. 36 months, 156 weeks, 1093 days, 26,236 hours, 1,564,160 minutes. In some ways, it has slipped by with lighting speed. In others, it seems likes time has stopped. In it's tracks.
I realize when I let myself look back, I see we have in fact been on a prolonged trek. But like the long walk on crutches to the stage for Itzhak on the polio stricken limbs. There has been progress, there has been triumph. There has been an ability to move forward. It has not been in vain.