My name is Emily Williams and I am 18 years old. When I was two, my sister Lexie was born. Three and a half months later she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. My entire life has been about being the sibling, the sister of the girl with cancer. Despite not suffering through the physical pain of the cancer patient, the life of the sibling is not easy. We go through quite the emotional journey. It makes sense that the focus and attention immediately turn toward the kid with cancer, but that leaves the sibling alone and on the side. We are often moved around from family member to friend while our parents care for our sibling who is undergoing treatment or in the hospital. The sibling journey leaves kids feeling alone and very confused. We feel scared and worried about our brother or sister with cancer. We feel angry and jealous of the attention they receive, but then guilty for feeling jealous. The worst part is that no one understands, and we feel there is no one to turn to. It is clearly a very complicated journey.
Camp Sunshine saved me. I was trudging along through the sibling journey thinking all my feelings were wrong and I was completely alone. Then I discovered sibling groups at Camp Sunshine. There I met other siblings who, through talking about our lives and struggles, I realized felt the same way as I did. I no longer felt alone. I felt safe and understood. Sibling groups at Camp changed my life. Now I help lead sibling groups at Camp because I want to help other siblings realize they are not alone in their feelings or on their journey. We siblings stand together and support each other. I would not be where I am today without Camp Sunshine and the bonds I have made there. I love Camp more than anything in the world.
Because Camp Sunshine has had such a huge and powerful impact on my life I want to give other families the ability to have that experience. This is my 4th year doing the plunge to raise money for Camp Sunshine. I hope to raise at least $2000 to send at least one family to Camp so they too can feel the magic that is Camp Sunshine. Please help me reach my goal! Thank you.