I am so excited to introduce you to our very first featured family The Flamms. Their little girl, Millie, was the first cancer friend that we met after Cami was diagnosed. They were so supportive while we went through our treatments together. Below is their story written by my dear friend, Amanda (Millie's amazing mother).
On August 28, 2009 I delivered my second child by emergency C-section. He arrived into this world 11 weeks too soon. Thankfully Austin was strong. He weighed a whopping 4 lbs 8 oz.
Austin spent a month in the NICU, a month I will never forget. A month that some days I didn’t think I could physically or emotionally make it through. It was difficult to leave my brand new, tiny, helpless baby in a cold hospital. Of course I knew he was in good hands, but I was his mother. The problem was I needed to be the mother of Millie, my 4 year old daughter as well. She seemed to be struggling with the adjustment of sharing my time. It had just been Millie and I at home for years. We were and are best friends.
Luckily Austin was a fighter and he was able to get out of that dreaded hospital 31 days after his birth. It was amazing to feel like I had passed the most difficult trial in my life, but I was so wrong. I had no idea as I held my little man with such pride that a horrible beast had taken hold of my daughter while I wasn’t looking.
My sweet Millie hadn’t been herself the first few months of being a new sister. She tried to be happy but she just wasn't. She was whiny and tired all the time. Some days she would cry for no reason. I knew something was wrong.
On December 17, 2009, Millie, my stunningly beautiful, smart, perfect, little girl was diagnosed with cancer.
Once we knew what Amelia had it was painfully obvious to me. I should have seen it. She had been extremely pale, had leg pain, unexplainable fevers, and was exhausted all the time .
I was a wreck with the traumatic arrive of my son, but if Austin hadn’t come early I would have had a brand new baby right when she got diagnosed. He knew what was coming for our family and he prepared us, he was and is “my sunshine.” Austin was there to support all of us in a battle that none of us could have handled one single day sooner then it came.
On the very day of Millie’s diagnosis Austin was at Primary Children’s Hospital as well. He had a double hernia surgery the week before and was there for his follow-up appointment to make sure everything looked good. Thankfully, it did. The day Austin was officially healthy was the day our world crumbled.
Amelia continued to get daily doses of chemotherapy through the start of February 2012. She fought for over 2 years. Unfortunately, 3 days after the celebration of Millie conquering her cancer we found out that she had already relapsed. Hearing "It's Back" was earth shattering. There was no air in the room and I couldn't breath. Nothing can prepare you for it. Nothing. The most difficult part was telling Millie that her battle wasn't over. It had only begun and it was about to get worse. Amelia had to endure 7 more months of extremely, intense chemotherapy her body hadn't seen before, along with 8 doses of full body radiation . This was all followed by a bone marrow transplant on June 22, 2012. After all of that Amelia still has a 40% chance of her cancer coming back. A fact that as a mother I am constantly aware of. I try my hardest to live in the moment, but the fear of "what if" is always in the back of my mind.
Millie is still in recovery from transplant and thankfully she is doing incredibly well. She is a shining star and because of her amazing attitude she has been able to prove to everyone who knows her that staying positive does make a difference. Miss Millie has become infamous because of it. I get asked all the time if I'm Millie's mom.
Her giggle is contagious, her whistle is loud, her dancing is outrageous, and her imagination is never ending. She is a star. Amelia has changed how I see the world and I am grateful to her and will be for the rest of my life. Millie has conquered cancer twice, she can move mountains, she can do anything.
Cute Amanda posted this to our Instagram...
"The donations is a huge surprise to me and we are so grateful, but we have been so blessed that we will be choosing another family in need this holiday season to donate any funds that come in. Please donate and help us surprise someone else in need. Tis the season."
Leave it to the Flamms to think of others and spread the love this time of year. My heart is overflowing from all the support we have been given and now to have this family want to pay it forward, it may sound cheesy, but it just makes you feel all warm and fuzzy doesn't it?