One At A Time
While walking along a beach, an elderly gentleman saw someone in the distance leaning down, picking something up and throwing it into the ocean.
As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, picking up starfish one by one and tossing each one gently back into the water.
He came closer still and called out, “Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?”
The young man paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean.”
The old man smiled, and said, “I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?”
To this, the young man replied, “The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them in, they’ll die.”
Upon hearing this, the elderly observer commented, “But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can’t possibly make a difference!”
The young man listened politely. Then he bent down, picked up another starfish, threw it into the back into the ocean past the breaking waves and said, “It made a difference for that one.”
What is One At A Time?
One At A Time is a program started by Brodi Nicholas to help change the world one person at a time. Through fundraising, donations, and sales of the One At A Time bracelets, One At A Time is able to have a significant impact on the lives of individuals who have been diagnosed with life threatening medical diagnoses.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for any inquiries about One At A Time.
Learn about our first One At A Time recipient below.
Campaign #1: Meet Samantha London
As Told By Her Parents:
On Monday, May 6th, Samantha pointed out a lump in her neck under her jaw that was about the size of a marble and just about as hard. No other symptoms were present, we didn’t think too much about it. We watched her for a week, nothing happened except for another lump behind the ear, and she noticed two on the back of her head when she put up her ponytail. I called and made an appointment to be seen. Her Pediatrician is amazing. We love her. Dr. Prakasam. She had labs drawn and said it might be Mono, but there was something in her tone. Within two hours, we received a call that Samantha was being referred to a Hematologist. (Also, an Oncologist.) There was almost a complete absence of Neutrophils. Those are the part of the white blood count that fight bacteria. Everything else was in normal range. It was strange. We met with the Hem/Onc Tuesday. He wanted to see if the Mono test came back positive. We set a bone marrow aspiration for the following Monday figuring we could always cancel it.
Well, the Mono test came back a little strange. We decided to still do the bone marrow Monday, and we noticed Samantha was starting to droop easily. She was dropping weight rapidly. There were some things in hindsight that we had just attributed to basketball and sports training. (Sore legs at night, sore joints, a little weight loss, some energy slumps).
Monday the 20th was the bone marrow aspiration. They put her to sleep so that she wouldn’t feel it since it is a painful procedure. We met with the Doctors afterwards, and preliminary smears looked clear, so they sent us home. But within two hours, Samantha spike a fever of 101.9. Without neutrophils, this is an emergency situation. We were told to get to Sutter Memorial immediately. We bypassed the ER and Registration and went straight to the 6th floor. There was a bed waiting for her behind two doors that lead to a filtered air wing for Neutropenic patients. The nurses worked on her quickly to get antibiotics flowing and get her fever down. It was very stressful and worrisome. Tough to watch your baby girl go through such difficulties. She had been poked with needles so many times over two days. That bothered her more than anything.
On Tuesday, they delivered the news: Pre-cursor B-Cell Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia – or A.L.L. And things continued to move at break-neck speed. Meetings with Doctors and Social Workers and Nurses and Child Life and More Doctors. Samantha has been amazing through the process. She has a strong spirit, and the work ethic and perseverance that she has learned in school and sports over the years will serve her well during this battle. She has a strong faith and belief in God and knows there is a greater purpose. She is amazing!!
She is on the more aggressive protocol due to age (over 10). Yes, she will lose her hair. No, we don’t know when she is coming home. It depends on many factors, so we take it day to day. Yes, she is staying positive as are we.
Since we first began working with Samantha’s family to help make some of Samantha’s dreams come true Samantha has come a long way. She is now back in school and making steady progress towards a more active lifestyle as she had been used to before cancer. With the help of some incredibly generous and selfless people we were able to get Samantha everything on her wish list including an electric drum kit, drum lessons, a dry suit, a bicycle, and tickets to a Katy Perry concert. As an added bonus to the London family we were also able get them a cabin in Lake Tahoe for a weekend and a mani-pedi for two for Samantha and her mom.