These are not your typical family pictures, they are the “before” pictures of a family about to embrace a huge turning point in their eldest son’s fight against cancer. I took of them just before Camden and his mom, Jocelyn, shaved their heads.
Emotions were high but that comes with the territory. Cam was diagnosed with pre-b acute lymphoblastic leukemia, two weeks after he turned 4. His treatment will last 39 months. Children continue to die from cancer and side effects from the treatment. Still, the National Cancer Institute only allocates 4% of funds to pediatrics and protocols for his type of cancer have not changed in over 30 years.
The most poignant moment for me came immediately after Cam had his head shaved, while he was feeling his head and decided he didn’t like it because it was prickly. He looked up and asked his mom, why he had to lose his hair? The feelings flew in like a sucker punch to me. I can’t imagine what it must have felt like to the mother who had to answer the question. But isn’t that the question we’re all asking? Why? And to add to it, the simplicity and innocence of his question. Not why is he sick, or why is this happening to him. Just, why does he have to lose his hair?
The night before the appointment, Jocelyn posted on Facebook that if she could get a certain number of people to donate to pediatric cancer research she would shave her head too. She raised over $2000. That doesn’t even begin to cover the lengths to which this mom will go to fight for her son. She is only getting started.
I was so humbled to part of this experience along with Heidi from Voila Style. If you’d like to contribute to the Bataille Family, please visit https://www.youcaring.com/camden-bataille-442290 or follow along in their Facebook group, Camden’s Crusade.