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Our first grader came out ready this morning to head off to school, hands behind his back and walking sideways. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out something is afoot. “What’s behind your back?” I asked him. “Ants.” The kid had a plastic container full of ants he’d been keeping in his room, which he was trying to sneak to school. New rule: No Ants in your room. This is the same child that told me six months ago “You never said I couldn’t play dodge ball in my room!” Boys.

We are all just plum exhausted with these last few weeks of school. This week was eighth grade graduation so we have two left at school for another week and one sleeping 16 hours a day. I clearly remember my senior year of high school. I had some wonderful friends and I remember the feeling of being on top, knowing that what I would do would change the world. We were full of the joy of invincibility. I’m amazed watching this transition in my own home and every day I am grateful that I am blessed to be here to see it. Although some days it feels like these adolescents of mine are stretching their wings, only in order to beat me with them. I marvel that another school year has gone by and I am still here. Thank you God.

I’m faring well on the clinical trial drug, just tired most of the time. As my buddy Bob would’ve said, “Amy, it’s called ‘fatigue’”. So I limit what I do and I lay around not feeling guilty about it. My thyroid, which has been a little wacky since my Yervoy treatments last fall, is now officially in overdrive so I started some medication to slow it down. This apparently contributes to the fatigue. And then there’s the cancer. Oh well.

Next week I return to Vanderbilt for infusion number two of Anti-PD1. I wonder what Mel is up to. I have a brain scan in a month and then scans on the rest of me in two months. I pray it’s working. I’m still here, so that’s a good sign.

May is melanoma awareness month so here is my two cents. PLEASE buy some new sunscreen and reapply it this weekend while you’re outside. Just one blistering sunburn can double your chances of developing melanoma. Even I forget, but again, it doesn’t take a genius.

I follow several melanoma blogs and one of them is for little Addison Cox, who just turned two, and was born with stage 4 melanoma. It passed through the placenta from her mother, who has since died. Little Addison fights on through treatment and brain surgeries. They are posting stories of other melanoma fighters to help raise awareness. This link is a story from yesterday. WARNING: THIS CONTAINS A LINK TO A VERY GRAPHIC, POST-SURGICAL PICTURE OF THIS MAN. THINK TWICE BEFORE YOU OPEN IT.

http://addisonsarmy.org/robs-story/

New sunscreen seems like a bargain now, doesn’t it? Here is also a link to a fundraiser supported by a group of New York City finance gurus. All you have to do is enter your name and email address and pledge that you have, or will get, a skin check and THEY will donate $100 to melanoma research in your name, up to $250,000. Anyone can sign up – let me know if you do. I signed up and it took five seconds. I want to make sure all of that $250,000 goes for research.

http://www.debtdomain.com/lffm

Have a wonderful, wonderful weekend.

Peace to you all – Amy

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