Ms. Fricker, one of Ashtyn’s teachers at Canyonview Elementary school, commented “Know the saying ‘it takes a village to raise a child?’ Well, it takes an army to kick cancer’s butt out of that village. Help show Ashtyn she has an amazing army behind her. She is a tough little girl and is fighting one heck of a battle.” She is completely right. Ashtyn is fighting one heck of a battle. More importantly, it is going to take an army for Ashtyn to triumph. I have never been more sure of anything.
I sometimes fear the spark in the Army will die down. I panic to think what we would do without you. I am certain of Ashtyn’s outcome if the Army loses faith or ceases praying for her. But the moment the fear comes it is replaced with faith in the Army. I know we won’t be abandoned. Ashtyn won’t be forgotten. We have soldiers on the front line fighting. We have soldiers standing back with prayers in their hearts waiting for the call to attack. And when the most fierce attacks are needed, I have no doubt that the entire Army will stand together united in strength and faith to pray, serve, and send all their positive energy with determination to not quit until that battle is won. The Army will then stand on guard for the next battle. And so it will go until all battles have been won, the war is complete, and Ashtyn stands triumphant with complete health. But health is not all she will have gained. She will look around at the thousands of members of her Army. She will see thousands who have hearts like God and love like her Savior. She will see thousands with faith that will change the world. Thousands with hope that will change lives. Thousands with goodness that seeps into countries and states. Thousands with tenderness that improves communities. Thousands with perspective that strengthens families. Thousands with purety that softens homes. And then she will know that because of her strength and faith and the strength and faith of her Army, lives were changed for good. Her life will be changed for good. And then she will take her health and all that she learned from you, and will press forward to the next war she’ll have to fight. She will continue on with life triumphing over all that is in store for her. There will be no stopping her. And there will be no stopping you. Together this world will be forever better and forever changed. That is what Ashtyn’s Army will do.
Who is a part of Ashtyn’s Army? You.
Ashtyn’s Army includes family members, friends, and strangers. However we are all “family” bonded together, united in a common cause. The Army comes from all cultures, religions, and walks of life. We couldn’t have it any other way. We need religious and non religious. We need spiritual and non spiritual. We need young and old, male and female, rich and poor. That’s what makes the Army powerful. Power comes from the unique gifts and talents each individual has to offer. Power comes from each individual heart and mind.
One thing the Army has in common is each member has a good heart. Hearts that are sensitive and tender to the suffering of others. Hearts that rise up to do good. Hearts that rely on faith in all it’s unique forms. Hearts that care about others instead of only thinking of themselves. Hearts that have hope for a better world. Hearts that know this world is not as dark as some might wish us to think. Hearts that know the power of prayer. Hearts that know the power of optimism and positive thinking. Hearts that are confident and strong, willing to do what it takes to make a difference. Hearts that know even the smallest act of kindness or the shortest prayer or the slightest bit of hope is power enough to cure a child of cancer.
Thank you for being a part of Ashtyn’s Army. Ashtyn has recieved letters, messages, cards, balloons, blankets, necklaces, fun activities, books, stuffed animals, and gifts of all varieties. I have family and friends waiting for word to come to the hospital to entertain, uplift, and support Ashtyn. There are others actively bringing me meals and taking care of my needs. Many people work behind the scenes, giving of themselves and sharing their gifts and talents. Ashtyn’s elementary school has rallied around my family. Chandler’s school staff are supporting him. There is a photographer documenting milestones and an IT computer expert building and managing her website. We have amazing friends and neighbors who bring dinner to my children every night. Each Monday my house gets cleaned by two dear women. My family tutors, entertains, and carpools my kids to their various activities. There is a friend who moved into my house to be the at-home caretaker. Others invite my kids on fun outings, give hugs, and provide them with needed attention.
There are church congregations around the world remembering Ashtyn. Her name has been added to prayer chains in different religions and is on the prayer lists at L.D.S. temples in many locations. She has been enrolled under the special patronage of Our Lady of Lourdes in France and Illinois. There are many families who pray for her morning and night. Children include Ashtyn in their prayers daily. Fasting and prayers have been dedicated to her with her specific needs in mind. Hundreds think of Ashtyn and hope the best for her.
Ashtyn has heard from people all across Utah and the Salt Lake Valley. Support has also spread around the country and across the world. She has heard from people in California, Idaho, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, Georgia, Virginia, Florida, Washington DC, upstate New York, Quebec Canada, Ghana West Africa, Botswana South Africa, Japan, Argentina, and Venezuela.
I am in awe at the strength of Ashtyn’s Army and how it has changed her life already. Every member is valued. Every member is needed. Indeed it does take a village to raise a child just as surely as it will take an army to kick her cancer’s butt out of that village. Thank you for being apart of Ashtyn’s Army.