Baking Memories for Kids
One of my not-so-good memories formed on a fall day in 2006. I was 47 years old. A friend and I set out to hike the beautiful red rock landscape of Sedona, AZ. I knew we’d have some laughs and share a unique experience, but I had no idea that our hike would start the most significant journey of my life.
As we traversed the red rock I noticed a lump in my neck and – in a dizzying flash – I went from my friend’s company and comfort to the uncertainty of a doctor’s office. Thus began months of appointments, consultations, biopsies, and near-crippling worry. When my doctors surgically removed the lump, they discovered I had an advanced form of testicular cancer – one that was days away from entering my brain.
A second surgery immediately followed, and then a three-month chemotherapy program that was as aggressive as it was nauseating. A return to hiking was out the question, seeing as how I couldn’t make it up a flight of stairs without having to stop from exhaustion. Though I endured the pain and discomfort of chemo, I was blessed to have an amazing group of doctors and the love and support of my friends and family.
Facing an uncertain future gave me a deep appreciation for my past. My memory bank was filled with positive moments to call upon to help me through the tough times ahead. At 47, I’d experienced some of the greatest joys in life. And in my humble opinion, two of those joys are: Florida amusement parks and making what my friends and family refer to as “the best chocolate chip cookies they’ve ever tasted.”
Baking Memories 4 Kids combines these joys for children with life threatening illnesses – the brave youngsters who haven’t had the time or resources to fill their memory banks with joyous moments. Every year, our chocolate chip cookie sales raise money to send children with life threatening illnesses and their families on all-expense paid trips to Florida amusement parks, where they’ll create life-long positive memories that will help them forget their medical situations – even if it’s only for a short time.
Today, I am happy to say I am cancer free. But my battle with cancer is a memory that endures, and it reminds me that there people out there, young people, who continue to battle with the disease. It inspires me to achieve something for each and every one of them. So I ask that you imagine a child spending time in a cancer center rather than playing, attending school or vacationing with their families.
My mission for Baking Memories 4 Kids: Become MEMORY MAKERS for children with life threatening illnesses and their families.
I asked Frank a few questions:
What do you like/enjoy/love the most about living in Rockland County ?
I love the fact that we are so close to the city but have a warm rural feel.
If there is one thing (anything) that you want to change about Rockland County, what would it be ?
I would have loved to see a commuter rail added to the new Tappanzee Bridge.
In one word, how would you describe Rockland County and it’s people ?
Visit Frank now at: bakingmemories4kids.com