Once again, members of Team Wookie will walk in honour of our beloved Maria Christine Wilkie. As she did from the very beginning, Maria continues today to bring us all together.
It’s been a year like no other. A year of reflection, change, struggle. But I hope it’s also been a year filled with the discovery of simple joys. A year of unorthodox yet wonderful connections and the anticipation of what lies ahead. The good amongst the bad. As the world starts to change and open up again, my hope is that we are able to look back and feel grateful, being fortunate enough to have weathered the pandemic in the best way possible. Hang in there. We’re on the home stretch.
Yes, we have certainly come a long way since the start of the pandemic, but when it comes to ovarian cancer treatment, the path forward has not been so rapid. Mortality rates have declined only minimally since the 1970’s when the “War on Cancer” was declared in North America. When Maria was first diagnosed, she and I vowed to do what we could to help change those statistics. The Walk of Hope is a simple yet powerful way to do just that. A simple yet powerful way to remember our beautiful Maria, to share the light and feel the warmth. I can’t thank Team Wookie enough for being a part of this over the years. The support you’ve given from day one has been overwhelming. It truly means a lot.
There are some lyrics I’d like to share from a favourite song called Head of the Lake. The words seem appropriate to me, the idea of community in the face of adversity.
We made a circle and it helped
Smoke did the things we couldn't
Singing broke open hearts
I hold your hand without touching it
Thank you all for being a part of our community, a part of Maria’s circle. Together, I believe we can benefit from the strength of memory. Together, I believe we can make a difference.
Maria, I have learned much from you, my beautiful Snowberry, my Moglie, my amazing Manasweetie. I will continue to carry that love and wisdom forward, living each day in a way that makes you smile.
As always, I welcome friends, family, colleagues, anyone who wishes to join Team Wookie to celebrate Maria’s luminous spirit. Even in these difficult times I know each and every one of us feel the bonfire that is Maria, warming us, illuminating the path ahead.