Hello my crocheting friends. I have a serious subject to talk with you about today, so there will be no photos, just lots of words. I hope you will stick with me through it.
Our family was dealt a huge blow last week when my dear father-in-law was diagnosed with Stage 3 lung cancer. He has COPD, and his lungs are in such bad shape that he is not a good candidate for surgery. Therefore, his only option at this point is chemotherapy in hopes that they can shrink the mass in his right lung.
To say that this has knocked us all for a loop is a huge understatement. We have been feeling all of the emotions you go through when something like this happens - denial, anger, frustration, etc.
Since I don't work, I volunteered to go with my in-laws to the chemotherapy treatments. He had his first one yesterday. Thankfully it was not as bad as we all thought it would be, and we are praying that the side effects will be minimal. The doctors and nurses who work in the oncology unit at our local VA hospital are absolutely wonderful, and I know he will get excellent care there.
After his diagnosis, I knew that I had to do something, anything, to help, so I decided to make some chemo caps to take with me. I took several with me, and finished one while I was there. Later in the afternoon, one of the nurses saw me sitting there crocheting and asked what I was making. When I told her, she asked if I had made the ones that were sitting over there on the table and I told her I had. She was so excited, and told me that one of the patients there receiving chemo had already picked one out and was wearing it, and she wanted me to meet her. She took me over to meet Judy, a wonderful little old lady without a stitch of hair on her head. But there she was, proudly wearing that purple cap I had made with the biggest smile on her face! She thanked me profusely, and said she absolutely loved her cap. Boy did that make me feel good. :)
A little while later, a breast cancer survivor came in to say hello to the nurses and she saw me crocheting and asked what I was making. When I told her, she got tears in her eyes and said that when she was undergoing chemo and lost her hair, it made such a difference to her that people cared enough to knit and crochet hats for her to wear.
This is where you, my crocheting friends, come in. As crocheters (and knitters too) we are blessed with an awesome gift. You may never have thought about it that way, but you are. You have the gift to make a huge difference in the life of a cancer patient.
I felt very strongly today that I needed to write this post to encourage you to crochet and/or knit some hats or caps and donate them to your local cancer center. It may not seem like a big deal to you, but to someone undergoing chemo who has lost their hair, it IS a big deal. All you need is a skein or two of some very soft yarn (Caron Simply Soft is what I used) and any hat pattern, although the less holes in the hat the better (hides the fact that there is a bald head underneath it).
Thank you so much for reading this, and I hope you will take some time to make a few hats and donate them to your local cancer center.