The Neverending Story

'The finest steel has to go through the hottest fire.'
--John N Mitchell

We set up this website in late October for our wonderful, inquisitive, loving Aiyana. Yana is our eight year old daughter, sister, cousin, niece, friend and granddaughter who was diagnosed with an extremely rare form of leukemia (MPAL).

Aiyana had an amazing life and we are filled with hundreds of heartwarming memories. May all of us take to heart how much a little girl from Lockeford, CA, impacted the world and be reminded and inspired to never let the sun go down without living each day all the way through.

Her Spirit is in every Butterfly.


October 31st

Halloween in the Pediatric Unit of UC Davis Medical Center's Cancer Ward was hopping yesterday. Facepainters were stationed just outside the door and rainbows and stars and spiderwebs were on everyone's smiling faces. A clean room playroom was set up at the end of the hall staffed by volunteers to design pumpkins, decorate door hangers and make origami windchimes.

Inside the room, the windows were painted up with bats and ghosts and pumpkin decorations were all over the room. Gavon came as the Spider King and Avry was a butterfly; Mom and Morgan were witches, Dad was a Hippie and Jason was a pirate. Granny and Grandpa and Grandpa Randy and me were cleverly disguised as responsible adults. :)

The staff came in every minute or two, superheroes and Minnie Mouse and soccer goalies and Jessie and Woody from Toy Story, with their arms full of toys and candy and flashlights to put in the bag for Aiyana and her sister Avry. We watched and laughed at the trick-or-treat in reverse and the delight and anticipation on Aiyana's face with each knock on the door.

Aiyana got up and walked down the hall, and we trailed behind, most of us in masks decorated with big smiley faces, moustaches and glasses. She played a game of fishing and won a doll gymnast set with - count them - TWO Barbies! The anti-nausea meds kicked in mid-day and she was in great spirits. She ate! She ate peaches, drank water and juice, chicken nuggets and half a hamburger. We took a lot of pictures, I think as overjoyed to see her hungry and eating as in how darling she looked in her little ladybug cap and fireman's hat.

Morgan brought Aiyana's prayer jar and she read some of the good wishes. She was overcome with the support of so many people. If you haven't checked out the facebook page yet, I hope that you will. And if you know Aiyana and the Self family, please write a fun event you shared with them or a Remember When story about Aiyana, to lift her spirits. IF YOU ARE A FACEBOOK MEMBER, FIND THE PAGE NAMED AIYANA'S PRAYERS.

Her mother said that today was a great day, one to keep as a memory because the days ahead will be hard. We know she is right. Being present is all we have, loving each other, being strong, holding hands and trusting God will see us through.


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