UPDATE:
A Caring Bridge site has been set up to keep everyone informed of Anissa’s condition and can be found here: www.caringbridge.org/visit/anissamayhew/. There has been encouraging bits of news today but it is still very early. Thank you so much for your wonderful notes, prayers, and thoughts. I know that the Mayhew family will cherish them the same way my family cherishes everything that has been written about our Madeline.

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I am incredibly lucky to have many amazing friends in my life, friends that have surrounded me and held me up the last seven months. Each of my friends has brought something different, something that I never would have known I’d need when we became friends. I am so grateful for all of them, and could wax poetic about them for months on end.

My friend Anissa and I bonded because we had daughters with medical needs. Anissa’s daughter Peyton had leukemia, and Anissa knew what it was like to have a child that was sick in the hospital.

We are the type of friends that can pick up where we left off, no matter how long it’s been since we’ve seen each other.

I’ve stayed at her house, had coffee with her husband, played with her kids. She’s been to my house, met all my family and friends. It makes both of us sick that she never met Maddie, but she has plans to come out as soon as Binky is born.

After Madeline passed away, Anissa flew out from her then-home in Florida to be with me and my family. It was then I discovered something about Anissa that I wish I didn’t know, that I wish she wasn’t good at. Because of her involvement in the Pediatric Cancer community, she has friends who have lost children. She knew exactly how to be there for me. She knew exactly the kinds of things I needed to hear, and she knew how to listen.

Anissa and I have had long talks about life and death. The kind of talks you can only have with someone that has seen it, been near it, faced it, touched it. She has let me unburden myself to her. She has no idea how much she’s helped me.

Earlier today, Anissa had a stroke. She’s in the Intensive Care Unit and her awesome husband Peter is by her side. I would give anything to be there with him, helping with their three young kids, holding Anissa’s hand and telling her jokes. I want to press her hand against my belly so she can feel Binky kick. And if I wasn’t so afraid that she’d kick my ass for traveling against doctor’s orders, I’d be there tomorrow.

I am a lucky recipient of internet love and generosity. I am hoping the same happens for Anissa and her family. You can go here or here to help. Both will be updated with information as it becomes available.

Anissa, I love you and I KNOW you’re going to get better. You’re going to meet my daughter and she’s going to drool on you and love you as much as I do. I am always here for you, and as soon as I can be THERE for you, I will be.

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