Thursday, October 17, 2013

Stories to Inspire: Laughter Really Is the Best Medicine

There is a commercial on TV now about children going through cancer treatments, and is shows the tiny victims playing in their bedrooms. In the background is the melodic Beach Boys Song "In my Room". It is very hard to watch.

Indeed, alone in one's room is where the fear of cancer or what is going with their bodies and their lives rears its ugly head. But to remedy this, in steps the beautiful face of a caring parent.

Ava Rasmussen is a little girl from northern NJ who is going through treatment for leukemia. In order to help her cope and answer her questions,
her mom would sit with her in her room at home and in the hospital and together they would compose poems about what she was going through at that point in time. For instance, there is a poem entitled "My Pop with No Top" likens her lack of hair to her beloved grandpa's.  Writing poems  was a way to pass the time, get their creative juices running, and make each other think and laugh. 

After some thought and some words of inspiration from some caring friends and family, the family decided to turn those poems into a book so that other children going through a similar experience could find some words of encouragement- and some giggles- from the silly and thoughtful prose.

I asked Ava's mom if her daughter always wanted to be a writer She answered, ""I never really thought about being an author. I want to be so many things when I grow up! I can't really choose one thing right now! I want to be a dancer, singer, millionaire and a doctor so I can help other kids with cancer. My favorite author is myself! But I do like the Amelia Bedelia books!"

The book, written by Ava and Samantha Rasmussen is entitled Laughter is the Best Medicine: A Silly Book of Poems to Help Kids With Cancer Understand and Deal with their Diagnosis" It is $22.

On the Amazon listing they state "Fifty percent of the proceeds of the book will be donated to pediatric cancer research - which currently only receives 4% of the National Cancer Institute's $4.6 billion dollar budget".

Whether you have a child with a disease, would like to help your children who may know someone who is ill, or would just like to put a smile on Ava's face because you bought her book, consider a purchase of this book. 

You can order the book through Ava's website or on Amazon.

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