Make it a Splendid Week: Periwinkle Long Term Survivor Program

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In recognition of September as Childhood Cancer, Sickle Cell Disease, Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP) and Histiocytosis Awareness Month, The Periwinkle Foundation is launching a month-long series of stories, articles, engagement opportunities and posts. Follow along on Periwinkle’s Facebook and Instagram for daily features highlighting these life-threatening illnesses, and the ways in which Periwinkle provides a community of healing for children and families cared for at Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers.

Each week during the month, we’ll highlight a Periwinkle program area and the ways in which Periwinkle children and families engage in the Periwinkle community of healing. This week’s focus is the Periwinkle adult Long Term Survivor Program.

The Periwinkle Long Term Survivor Program connects adult survivors of pediatric cancer with events and services addressing their unique social, medical and educational needs. Program participants  engage in monthly events tailored to provide fellowship with peers who share similar backgrounds, access to medical resources through the Texas Children’s Hospital Long Term Survivor Clinic and resources to lead productive, healthy lives as strong survivors.

Today’s edition of Make it a Splendid Week features artists who are now participants in Periwinkle’s adult Long Term Survivor program. Laura, Juan and Krysia have submitted numerous pieces over the years to Making A Mark®. Here is some of their work over the years! Make it a Splendid Week!

Making A Mark®
What A Wonderful World
Cancer has made me appreciate life more and I’m part of a community that appreciates and understands the importance of life.
Laura, Age 16 at time of painting, now 25
Making A Mark®
New Life
After the five year cancer fight, she was the one who planted the seed that brought me back to life: Vanessa S.
Juan, Age 18 at time of painting, now 28
Making A Mark®
The Magic Box
This is a box full of meaningful words that can help cancer survivors and others who are still on treatment.
Krysia, Age 24 in photo, now 35

Periwinkle Long Term Survivor participants collectively state the program is beneficial and important to have a safe place to share their mutual struggles and hardships, and to discuss their unresolved feelings of being a survivor. A current Long Term Survivor shares, “It is a big relief to know that I am not the only survivor out there who has to jump though hurdles and break through walls to live a normal life. As a family, we can face these hurdles and walls together.” We celebrate this incredible community, and all survivors of Childhood Cancer!

The Last Day of Cancer!

Today is my last day of cancer!
I am ringing the bell and everybody came to watch me.

It feels like I just graduated from school.
I’m going to celebrate with cake and family
and have fun!

I came a very long way, almost four years,
and now I’m so excited.

I want to go home and build Legos, play kid-pitch,
and win the championship!
I hope to play games, like Jenga and Knock-out,
with my family.

I really hope to have a good life.

Ayden, age 9

This entry is a part of our series “Make it a Splendid Week”! Follow along weekly to enjoy excerpts from The Splendid Review, an anthology of poems, short stories and autobiographies written by talented young writers engaged in the Periwinkle Arts In Medicine Program at Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers.

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