Cheska’s Birthday and Chlorella

Written by Father Bill No Comments

Today, my third daughter Francesca, aka Cheska, is 24 years old.  She departed our company 13 years ago when she was nine, leaving a hole in our hearts that will be filled when we catch up with her.

Until then, Barbara sends out reminders of Cheska and her adventures on her birthday.  The reminiscence for this year features chlorella, an algae product we used as a nutrional supplement because it had shown anti-tumor effects in a few human trials involving brain tumors.

So, with that intro, here’s what my wife Barbara shared with her mail list this morning …

Dear Family and Friends of Francesca,

Francesca is 24 today! As you know, I like to send along a small remembrance of her on this day. Today, I’d like to tell you a small story about Uncle Wesley and Chlorella. But before I get to that, I want to express again my deep thanksgivings about how God provided through Bill during the months of Cheska’s illness.

There is no treatment for a pontine glioma, so we were left to decide, with the consultation of our doctor of course, what treatments to take and what not to take. Bill actively took over this huge responsibility, analyzing what the research community offered as well as the huge array of recommended “natural” supplements. He did not accept merely anecdotal evidence. If a treatment did not have some objective and hopeful clinical results, he would not subject Cheska to it. It gave me huge assurance to know that someone with sound spiritual and scientific background, with only Cheska’s best good in mind, was making the decisions. Our daughter was going to get the best treatment we could possibly find, but she wasn’t going to be turned into a lab experiment.

At any rate, one of the supplements that made the “cut” was Chlorella Powder, identified on the label as a “Concentrated Nutritional Supplement, Chlorella Powder, Green Micro Algae.” Trust me, if that doesn’t sound appetizing, it wasn’t! No matter what you did to it, it still looked and tasted like green sludge.

One day, during the Chlorella era, the Wesley Mousers were visiting. (Wesley is Bill’s younger brother—a physicist and engineer with an engineer’s personality.) The brothers were in the kitchen preparing the chlorella in the blender with Cheska. The men were going to drink some along with Cheska as an act of solidarity, so to speak. And then, out of the blue, Uncle Wesley broke into song! To the tune of “Maria” from West Side Story


I just met a girl named Chlorella!

And suddenly that name

will never be the same

to me! Chlorella!

 Well, can you imagine the hilarity that broke out from all the family gathered around and especially the big smile on Cheska’s face!

I have kept the Chlorella canister in the attic with other memorabilia of Cheska. I never see it or say the word “Chlorella” to myself apart from the tune of “Maria.” Thanks be to God for those (like Uncle Wesley) who go with us in our trials and help us see and remember that they are, in fact, “light momentary afflictions.”

2 Cor. 4:16-17 — Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory,…

I love you all!

Cheska’s Mom

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