$35

One Holiday Food Basket

$70

One Christmas and One Thanksgiving Food Basket

$135

Christmas Gifts for 3 Children

$225

Christmas Gifts for 5 Children

$450

Christmas Gifts for 10 Children (That could be 3 Families!)

I am April. Recently my husband and I we were looking into buying our first house; we were always careful with money. Our girls have special needs, and we want to make sure they had every opportunity to have their therapies and education. We want them to be able to live full, happy lives, and to be able to meet challenges with confidence and vitality. If that meant some sacrifice on our side, it was an easy decision.

To be honest we felt successful and prepared. My husband was in no way afraid of hard work, and most of the time worked 12 hours a day, 6 days a week. I’d worry and he’d laugh it off. His sense of humor made it all seem alright. Then our world came crashing down around us. He woke up one morning unable to use the left side of his body. He had been having headaches for months and did have a cough that would come and go. His boss had previously denied any time off; deadlines were more important than any “imagined” illness. At the hospital, I actually hoped it was a stroke, as terrible as that sounded. I had been a CNA in the past. A small group of somber doctors stepped in: they had found a mass the size of a golf ball. A diagnosis of stage-4 lung cancer felt as though it ripped the air from my body.

In the space of a few days, I learned that my husband – this strong, devoted, happy-go-lucky guy – had maybe two months left to live. Although he hadn’t missed a day of work in almost 3 years, he was promptly fired for faking an illness. Once his job was gone, so was all of his insurance policies. Our Durango broke down, it was going to cost more to fix it than it was worth. It was seriously one thing after another.

In a matter of months, we burned through our savings, mostly on medical expenses and childcare. Fortunately, we had a doctor willing to fight for my husband’s life. My hubby wasn’t ready to give up and he began defying the odds.

I think we’re very lucky: we have each other, we have a home and our needs are met. We’re very happy to still have Daddy with us! Our kids are loving and grateful. They encourage us and remind us that they feel lucky to have what they have. We are blessed to have such good, loving kids. They thought they were going to have a very small Christmas, and they didn’t complain.

So you can imagine their surprise. They laughed and squealed with joy and danced in the wrapping paper. It meant a lot to us to see the excitement and happiness shining from our babies faces.

You didn’t have to help. We may never know each other, but I want you to know what you did. You made 3 kids very, very happy! My son thinks you’re Santa Claus reincarnated. My daughters think you’re God’s special angels.

Thank you for everything you have done! I don’t even mind stepping on a rogue Lego in the dark.