Tag Archives: cancer

Pinch Hitter

31 Jan

Change in plans for Thursday’s “Evening with an Author Brian Kraft” at The Stefanie Spielman Comprehensive Breast Center
I have to unexpectedly be out of town for a funeral this week, but I am pleased that Nicole Kraft and Danny Kraft are filling in for me. I am more than confident that they will do a fantastic job. They will be sharing from “The Year My Dad Went Bald” and our experiences with cancer. The event will be February 2 6–8p.m at The Stefanie Spielman Comprehensive Breast Center 1145 Olentangy River Road
For more info call (614)293-6428 or visit cancer.osu.edu/go/support

TYMDWB Brings Home a Medal

8 Nov

The Year My Dad Went Bald is now an officially an award-winning book. I always thought it was pretty great, but now I have the hardware to prove it. The book was a bronze medalist in the “Best First Book” category of the 2011 Moonbeam Childrens Book Awards. I am honored to receive this award and thank everyone who supported the project. What a great start, this is my first book and hopefully last about having cancer.

This year’s Moonbeam Awards medal ceremony will be held in conjunction with the 2nd annual Traverse City Children’s Book Festival, to be held on Saturday, November 12, 2011. For more info check them out on Facebook at www.facebook.com/moonbeamawards.

Evening with Children’s Author at the James

9 Oct

The James Cancer Center at The Ohio State University has been a great supporter of The Year My Dad Went Bald since it was published. The JamesCare for Life support program has been using the book to help families and it is a great honor to be involved in their great program. Needless to say, I am very excited to be a part of their Fall class programming.

On October 25, the James will present An Evening with Children’s Author featuring yours truly. I will be presenting The Year My Dad Went Bald, sharing my story and there will be a panel discussion for question and answers. The event runs from 6-8 pm and it should be a great evening. If you or someone you know are interested call JamesCare for Life at 614-293-6428 for information or visit them on the web.

Bear Essentials

31 Aug

Whenever I see a copy of “The Year My Dad Went Bald” go out to a cancer care center it is great to make a connection with the directors and staff of the facilities. I am amazed at all of the great work they do to help families facing cancer. Cancer care centers are using innovative techniques like art therapy and other family activities to help kids (and parents) best deal with a cancer diagnosis. I am proud that TYMDWB has become a tool to help educate and assist. Barbara Goldberg of the  Bear Essentials Support Group for Children at the Missouri Baptist Cancer Center in St. Louis was kind enough to write.

“The Year My Dad Went Bald” by Brian Kraft is a must read for families dealing with a diagnosis of cancer.  It is a universal story of hope,
courage and inspiration. Told through the perspective of a young boy, it gracefully guides children through a scary and sometimes unpredictable situation with with, sensitivity and truth.

As the coordinator of a support group for children who have a loved one battling cancer, I have found “The Year My Dad Went Bald” to be a wonderful resource.  I highly recommend this book to parents and professionals.”

Thanks to Barbara Goldberg and all those who strive to make life a little better for families in need.

Thanks and Congratulations!

4 Jul

We are so grateful for the shout out for TYMDWB on Facebook from Karen Wick Wiegand, who wrote: “This book was a huge blessing for our family – Helped so much for our little boy, Joey, as his daddy was battling testicular cancer the past 6 months – now he is cancer free! :)” Even better is the news that her husband is now in remission ~ among the best news we have heard today! Another great milestone today: Ian Clarke, who also shared with TYMDWB with his kids while he was undergoing cancer treatments, has his LAST chemo session TODAY. Woo hoo, Ian!

Give it up for the Caregivers

30 Jun

Often overlooked in the battle against cancer is the devastating effect it can have on family and friends. I know I would have been sunk without the unwavering support of my wife Nicki, son Danny and our community of friends. Driving to chemo, making sure you are taking your meds and  yes, even holding back your hair when your are barfing (not a problem for me I had short hair before I went bald) are part of the many thankless jobs caregivers can take on when a loved one is diagnosed with cancer.

These added burdens can takes it toll and it is important for caregivers to take care of themselves as well.

Shelly Francis has an excellent website, caregiverhope.com which is invaluable resource for caregivers or as they now also call them, co-survivors. According to the website, “Over 50 million family caregivers are taking care of a loved one in the United States due to chronic illness, disability and injury. Three of four families will find themselves caring for a cancer patient.” If you or someone you know has found themselves in a caregiver role, check out the website, it full of great resources including a list of publications that “The Year My Dad Went Bald” is now proud to be a part of. More importantly, Francis’ website is a wonderful source of inspiration and encouragement for those who are so important in the healing process.

Relay for Life

24 May

What a great weekend at Upper Arlington High School. Michelle Davis and the Relay for Life did an outstanding job organizing a first class event. I was honored to be invited to be a part of it and can’t wait for next year. Meeting other survivors, caregivers and some just general, all-around do-gooders was an uplifting experience.

This far out from treatment, I tend to forget what a hard and harrowing ordeal it was on my family and me. As we circled the track with luminaries lit in honor those who were not so fortunate as me, I was overcome with a confusing mixture of sadness and joy. Glad that I had recovered but felt almost a sense of guilt for my good fortune. I was reassured by the fact that all of these people were willing to spend a large chunk of their weekend (plus countless hours in preparation) to help fight cancer and provide comfort for those who lives it has touched. I can’t thank them enough.

Lighten Up People

20 May

Looking forward to tonight’s Relay for Life at Upper Arlington’s High School. I was invited to speak to the participants and lead the Survivors Lap. I am really honored.

Yesterday got e-mail from my friend Pat Dull (of Pat Dull and the Media Whores fame, Columbus’ best rock band, check’em out) wishing me luck on my “speech.”

I asked him if he had any good cancer jokes. He told me to check Google, duh!

After a quick check of “cancer jokes,” was disappointed by the quality and quantity of results. Even adding “tasteless’ to my search netted very little in the way of chuckles. Most were tired retreads of old jokes or so tasteless, unfunny and uncreative that I won’t bother to waste your time with them. Cancer is serious stuff but laughter is supposed to be the best medicine. Where are all the good jokes? If you have any send’em my way, I go on in a couple of hours.

Good Luck to Marcus Cotton

4 May

The offensive lineman from TCU was the picked with 10th pick of the fifth round by the New England Patriots in last weekend’s NFL Draft despite a recent diagnosis of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The intense scrutiny that NFL teams place on their potential draft picks just might have saved his life. After coming off a stellar season that saw his team go 13-0 and defeat Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl, Cotton headed off to the NFL Combine in Indianapolis where the players are measured, timed and tested in everyway imaginable. On of the teams requested a biopsy of a benign growth in his groin and the cancer was discovered.
Cotton has already had one chemo treatment and the prognosis is good. So good in fact, the Patriots went ahead and drafted him. Shows how far we have come in the treatment of cancer, as Cotton expects to be ready for training camp in June. Although I usually root against the Patriots, obviously I am pulling for Cotton. His success can show that a cancer treatment doesn’t have to keep you from reaching your dreams.

Relay For Life

6 Apr

I was honored to be invited to be the opening speaker for this year’s Upper Arlington/Grandview Relay For Life. This year’s event takes place May 20, 6pm through noon the next day. I was also invited to lead the Survivors Lap around the track at Upper Arlington High School. Get a team together and help us fight cancer. I hope to see you out there. Check out their website for more details.