We NEVER imagined that we would be a part of the childhood cancer community. We NEVER imagined we would be counted among the ranks of parents to loose a young child. We NEVER imagined having to teach our other children about death, heaven and God’s different methods of healing at such an early age. But we also NEVER imagined we could be loved by such an extended family as you all. We NEVER imagined the impact Bennett and our story would have on others. We NEVER imagined that hundreds of people would be inspired to bless others in his honor. But it’s happening and we are amazed.
Bennett’s name means “little blessed one” and he truly blessed everyone who met him or followed his story. Now that he has passed away, we are being contacted (on almost a daily basis) by people who are choosing to bless the St. Jude community in Bennett’s name.
Let me tell you…St. Jude is worth it! The doctors, nurses and staff working there are heroes that battle in the trenches each day to bring hope to families like ours. And like Bennett, many of these children face diseases that doctors know little about. The research done at St. Jude paves the way for new treatments to be discovered. There was a day that Leukemia was as rare and difficult to treat as the tumor Bennett had. But because of the research and work at St Jude, there is now a 96% success rate in treating and curing Leukemia. We need to work hard and ensure that they have the means to continue finding cures and saving lives. We need to help them get to the day they have that same success rate (or better!) with every disease they fight!
For those of you on our #Pray4BabyBennett Facebook page, you’ve already seen some of the great ways people are giving to St. Jude in Bennett’s honor. But I wanted to make sure ALL of you knew…
First, people have donated over $10,000 in Bennett’s name to St. Jude. This truly makes my heart happy!
Also, my sorority sisters pulled together and bought a brick for the sidewalk at St. Jude that will be laid next Spring. I love that his name will always be seen. Here’s what the brick will say:
We are truly humbled and could not be more thankful for the way you are all joining together and making sure that Bennett will always be the little blessed one. Are you ready to get involved and be the kind of blessing Bennett was too?! Here are a few of the other things “Team Bennett” has come up with that everyone can be a part of…
IT’S GALA TIME!
Bennett’s Bash is a fundraiser for St. Jude in Dallas and Lafayette this June. Ben and I will both be there and we hope you will make an effort to join us too! Go to www.bennettsbash.org for specific details and to order your tickets!
GET OUT YOUR RUNNING SHOES!
The St. Jude marathon in Memphis is happening on December 6 and some have already committed to run in memory of Bennett and at the same time raise money for St. Jude. I created TEAM BENNETT so that wherever you are, you can signup and commit to run with us. If I can do it, you can too (I don’t think I’ve put running shoes on in 10 years!). And the great thing is…you can do a full marathon, half marathon, 5k or bring your kids and do the family run. But I would love for you to join our team. So if you sign up, be sure and add that you are on Team Bennett. Click HERE to register (it’s cheaper before June 2!).
LET’S GET PAINTING!
Some of our very creative friends came up with an amazing idea to give back to St. Jude! It’s called Blue Balloon where child artists can donate paintings to sell and all of the proceeds will go to St. Jude in Bennett’s honor. So whether you are in the market for some awesome kid artwork or have a little artist that would love to paint and donate, we would love for you to be a part of it. I don’t think I will ever look at a blue balloon and not think of my little Bennett! For more information on Blue Balloon and how to get involved, click HERE.
READY TO CLEAN?
Another friend of mine is a consultant with Norwex and has offered to donate all of her commission between now and June 20 to St. Jude in Bennett’s honor. So whatever your cleaning needs are, please order HERE (this is the link to the Facebook event and you can click on the order form from there)!
Aren’t you excited?! We are! St. Jude gave us four more months with our little blessed one and we will continue to give back in any way we can and help save other lives struck by cancer. So join the Coleman’s in raising some money!!
And I promise we will start blogging some more soon about what God is teaching us as we grieve the loss of our sweet boy. But I will tell you this, as many tears as I’ve had, I’ve also had that many and more amazing memories of Bennett. I will say it over and over again…he was worth it!