Dad Dances in Parking Lot During Son’s Cancer Treatments
Ever since Aiden Yielding was first diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL), his family has been his personal hype team. The 14 year old was diagnosed at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, around the same time hospital visitation policies were forced to change in Texas.
Due to current COVID-19 restrictions, only one parent or caregiver can attend appointments with patients. So each Tuesday, Aiden and his mother, Lori, attend appointments at Cook Children's where he receives chemotherapy. During his treatments, Aiden's father, Chuck, waits patiently outside of the building until Aiden is taken into a room with a window.
Once Aiden can see outside, Chuck hosts a one-man, music-free dance party for Aiden (and anyone else who happens to see him). The two are usually on the phone, talking to each other at the time. Aiden will call out dance moves for Chuck to do, and he even does a little dancing himself. Chuck says he does it to lift Aiden's spirits.
"The restrictions during the pandemic made me feel helpless. And the only way I knew to cope was to somehow be there during his treatments," said Chuck. "When he was able to come to the window, it just came natural to me to wave and carry on, which turned into me dancing! I love knowing that it makes him giggle and smile, and let’s him know that his struggle is my struggle. I would never want him to think that he is going through this without his dad."
"I think it’s tough to break up a close knit family of four in these days, only allowing one parent to be present during Aiden’s clinic treatments and equally hard to not have his big brother Camden by his side too!" said Lori. "The population of kids present are all immunocompromised, so it makes sense, just a tough pill to swallow! I absolutely love listening to his giggles & watching him belly laugh at Chuck’s fancy dance moves. He can be having a terrible day, which transfers towards us some times too, and it’s instantly better once he sees his dad shake his booty. Aiden’s smile is contagious and can light up a room, even behind his mask."
The Yielding family is hosting a blood drive on Saturday, Oct. 3 in Fort Worth, Texas. Click here to sign up.
As a mom who had a child with ALL, I know the lengths that parents will go to support their child. My thoughts and prayers go out to Aiden and his family. Stay strong and stay tough!!!!!
You have the best support team...your family. I could feel your dad's love for you as I watched him dance. I'm sure it brings you great joy!! So glad your mom is able to be with you for your treatments. I was with my daughter for each and every one of hers. I truly believe it was what we both needed to endure the treatment. As she would say, "fighting cancer should read fighting chemo." Some days were better than others but she fought. Cancer sucks, but you got this. I see it in you!