The Valadao Family :: Help for the Struggle

Five years ago, I told you about our friends Rebecca & Mauro. Mauro was diagnosed with anaplastic astrocytoma in frontal/temperal lobes of brain. Brain cancer.

He underwent surgery, radiation & chemo...and he FOUGHT. He surprised the doctors and beat the odds when the cancer went dormant. We all rejoiced with them!

Life after cancer wasn't easy, but it was GOOD. Their sweet little family moved to California while Rebecca studied to be a midwife and Mauro continued to teach and become incredibly respected in the world of capoeira.

But in April 2012, they received the dreaded news...the cancer was back.

Mauro re-started chemo therapy, but surgery was not an option this time around.

He underwent 4 rounds chemo using a top-of-the-line medicine. During round five, Mauro experienced increased symptoms...headaches and seizures which led to a hospital trip and stay.

While they were there, they learned that the tumor had grown from 3cm in size to 7cm in 5 wk period. The chemo was not working.

So they moved on to plan B. Use a different chemo with another med to slow blood supply to tumor. Surgery is still not an option due to how fast tumor is growing...but there is only a 40% chance that the new medications will work.

And that brings us to today.

He is now in week 3 of this new 6-week  chemo regimen.

And things are hard. They don't know how much time he has left.

They are struggling...

...with the emotional weight of this disease on Mauro and on family. ...with the financial burdens of mortgage, health insurance premiums, gas, food, supplements, etc ...with the fact that neither of them can work right now due to Mauro being ill and Rebecca being his main caregiver. ...with Mauro's family being far away in Brazil.

Even in the struggle, they continue to focus on gratitude.

In their own words: ...for every minute together. ...for every prayer and positive energy sent out into the universe for our family. ...for the challenge of this situation strengthening our marriage and our family as a whole. ...for community, friends, and friends of friends. ...for family. ...for mental and spiritual growth. ...for baby smiles, Bianca's laughter, and my love's kisses.

Rebecca is one of my dearest, most beloved friends. Her spirit is woven into my very being...I am who I am today because of her. Our friendship has stood the test of time and distance and it's heart-wrenching to see them hurting like this.

Rebecca gave birth to Isabel just 1 week after Emma was born.

Bianca and Bella have been best buds since they met when they were ONE! They have ridiculous amounts of fun when they are together.

We have shared meals & laughter, music & camping...celebrated birthdays and anniversaries together.

And now I am asking for your help.

Today, they face the decision to pay for either Mauro's medical insurance or their mortgage. I know that we can come alongside them in this difficult time and offer encouragement in the form of financial help. I am asking that you would give...even help our sweet friends. Thank you so much for loving them.

*every dollar you give goes directly to their personal Paypal account and will be applied towards mortgage, medical bills, and every day needs.*you can read more about Mauro's story here.
Photo credit: Tiffani - Freeplaylife Photography