This was written by Cassia, the mother of Anderson, our first transplant patient guest. Due to the treatment phase at the time, they were not able to participate in the 1st Friendship Dinner that was held on June 22, 2001. But Cassia insisted on writing this letter, which was read by Debra Rowe during the occassion.
It's with great satisfaction that I send this letter to you, and am sorry that we could not be with you tonight to get to know you better.
My son, Anderson, was the first Boldrini patient to be a guest of the ASSOCIATION, and it's difficult to put into words just how much this has meant to us. We had been in Campinas for treatment for about three months, far from our home in Campo Grande, Matto Grosso do Sul, staying at a place that basically provided us with the mere essentials. But everything has changed since we came to the ASSOCIATION hospitality house. We don't view the ASSOCIATION as having provided a mere place to stay and eat, but has having provided us with a home where we receive love, affection and attention, and have all the necessary infrastructure required for a child facing a transplant. This became obvious to us when we noticed how every detail was planned and prepared in the best manner possible, with so much care. We know that for all this to have been made possible it required the will and support of you all, dedicated people who remain "behind the scene" colaborating so that everything functions properly.
We feel God's presence in our lives through each one of you who have lessened our saddness and homesickness during such a difficult time. It's very difficult to say, "My son has cancer." But it's much easier to say, "My son has cancer and there is nothing that we lack because God is providing all of our needs so that we can overcome this difficulty."
One day someone commented to me, "God gives to each one his cross to bear." I prefer to think of it this way: "God gives to each one his own ladder of difficulties; each rung of the ladder that we climb, closer to Him we get." To all of you my deep felt thanks, for you have helped us climb this rung in our lives.