Last week, I ran some tallies on the Cancer Girl donations: dollar amounts, who and where the funds had come from, etc., and I found the most interesting thing.
People are good.
I mean, I already knew that people are good. ... But what I found is that people are AMAZING. I have been humbled and inspired, not just by the generosity of my own circle of friends, but by the kindness of strangers. Read: My mind has been officially blown.
Get this. The PayPal donations were split almost down the middle, with funds coming from friends/family v. people I had never heard of prior to June 2012. The Wells Fargo check deposits were an even split: 33.3% friends/family, 33.3% friends of my parents (people I don't know, but who know my folks) and 33.3% total and complete strangers. The cash, I can't track, but the numbers and percentages that I can see tell the tale: People are good. And kind. And generous.
When I was running the percentages, I couldn't help but think back to my last appointment with Dr. G. We'd had a rather lengthy discussion about my blog, and I thought he would find the percentages interesting (also, I had a point to make), so I shot him an email to give him a report on the current state of affairs. For fun, and to create a permanent record of his response, I've copied and pasted the email chain below.
Subject: People are good
I wanted to let you know that I thought of you tonight as I was researching and tallying up my PayPal/donation totals. At my last visit, you'd asked about my blog and we talked a little about the traffic (current readership varies from 75-200, depending on what day of the week I post) and the fact that I'd thrown myself a fundraiser - by pointblank asking my friends and family (oh, and anyone else who wanted to pitch in) to donate to a benefit account and/or through PayPal - came up. You asked how much had been donated. At the time, it was *$X,XXX. I remember you sitting back on your stool, and with a dazed look, saying "I think you may have disproved my theory". I asked what your theory was, and your answer was "People suck!"
I'm here to tell you, Dr. G, people are good.
I ran the numbers again tonight. The donated amount has more than doubled since we talked about it at that office visit. The goodness and generosity of people is astonishing to me. ... And the real kicker is, a good portion of the people who've donated are people who have never met me. I've had 47 PayPal donations in the last twelve weeks. Twenty-one of those donations came from names that I had never heard/seen before they showed up in my account history. The cash donations at Wells Fargo are untraceable, but I would assume that the same trend (strangers, or maybe friends of friends, giving to someone in need) would hold true there.
Isn't that amazing?
When I ran the numbers, saw the total and realized that almost half of the traceable donations were from names I didn't know, I couldn't help but think of you and your theory. I'm very sorry to have to disprove your, I'm very sure, well-thought-out and researched theory, but I think you'll have to agree with me here. Not all people suck. Some of them (a lot of them, really) are totally awesome.
~ Laurie Evans
PS - Thank you. For having saved my life by cutting me open and taking cancer out of my body. ... Here's hoping we never have to do that again! ... But really, thank you. For saving my life. I owe you one. ;-)
PPS - Just in case you'd be interested, I'll give you the link to the post that started it all. I'm sure you'll find it very compelling reading. I mean... a heck of a lot of other people did! (Just don't tell Dr. H that almost 2,500 people have read this and know that I have a crush on him. I wouldn't want the celebrity status to go to his head.)
OK...some people are good!
I won't lie, I was a little disappointed that Dr. H didn't email me, too, if only to thank me for making him an international symbol of cancer-curing love. But alas, it seems that Dr. G really didn't tell Dr. H about my email and/or the blog in which I tell the world - on a semi-regular basis - how dreamy my oncologist is. Go figure.
I'm not sure which is the stronger emotion, the gratitude towards those who have helped me in my time of need, or the pride that I was able to talk Dr. G around to my way of seeing the world. (At least a little bit. I think it's a lot more than "some" people who are good, but I'll take whatever concession I can get from him on the matter. He did, after all, used to have a theory about all people that I simply cannot support - even if it did make me laugh out loud when he said it.)
*$X,XXX is not a real number. Many of you, I am sure, recognized this fact. For privacy and security reasons, I don't feel like I should disclose the actual dollar amount that was donated. (I did, however, give Dr. G the real number. Mostly because I find it amazing. Also, it was part of disproving his theory. I figured he needed to know, but the rest of the world does not.) Just know that you all impress and amaze me. I will ALWAYS be grateful for the life lesson this summer - this fundraiser - has been. Thank you, to all of you out there in the www, for having shown love and compassion in whatsoever way that you could. I am deeply beholden.