Just over two years ago, I was told that it takes about a year to get over the loss of a parent but I'm not sure "get over" is the proper terminology. Can you really ever get over the loss of a loved one? Of course not. The right way to phrase this, and I'm sure I'm not the first to say, is that the grieving will pass and you can resume with a fairly normal day to day life, but that loss will always creep up on you at times.
About a month into my dads chemo I decided to machine a little worry coin for him that I dubbed the "chemo coin". I had no intention of selling them but he insisted that I should, so I did. Not long after that, Woody, from Shire Post Mint sent me a little hand stamped version of a minted coin that could be a much more affordable option for folks. I loved the idea but wasn't keen on purchasing something related to cancer and selling for a profit. It seemed different than putting my time and effort into a piece and selling it. This will sound a bit woo-woo but I believe in the positive energy that I put into the pieces I make which was part of what I was doing. Having a coin minted and selling it didn't feel the same.
I did, however, like the idea of giving them away to Oncology and/or Chemo centers but didn't have the extra funds to do it so shelved the idea for a bit.
Cut to six months ago when one of my customers sent me a photo of someone carrying the hand machined Chemo Coin he had purchased the year before. Unbeknownst to me, he had purchased it with the intention of sharing it throughout the Oncology unit he worked in. Every day the coin goes to a different nurse, doctor or patient to help get through the day. I hadn't even considered this as a possibility and I can't explain how it made me feel. My first instinct was to run out to the shop and make as many as I could just to send more over to him but I decided instead to do something with more longevity.
My goal is to give away a couple thousand of these per year and hope they spread around as needed. They aren't for sale and Shire Post Mint was kind enough to get me a hefty discount on the wholesale price in order to get more out there.
I'm not exactly sure how I'm going to do this so feel free to reach out if you're in a position to pass 10-20 around to folks. If you or someone you love is going through chemo and could pass them around to other patients seems like the best route, but I'm open to suggestions. I'd love to ship out individual coins but the shipping cost would kill me so need to batch them out. If you can help please shoot me an email. info [at] jllawsonco .com
If you made it this far, I have a little side story for you. Remember that first coin I mentioned that Woody sent my way? I had been carrying it for a few weeks when I popped into the grocery store one day for some goods. This was in the good ole pre-mask days. I noticed the checker talking to a co-worker and was choking back some tears. I asked if she was ok and she replied that she just found out her daughter had cancer. My dad had only recently passed so I held back the tears and handed her that coin Woody made for me. The look on her face made up for the loss of the coin and I'll never forget it. That's when I knew I needed to have these made in order to give away.