Welcome to the start of another week. It’s a great day to be alive! 💝
As I roll into another week I have to share a circumstance that has been on my mind a lot lately. This isn’t my story to tell but it affects me in a profound way. Other people’s struggles are tough enough to swallow but when it’s someone you know personally, it’s even tougher. I can’t even imagine being in their shoes. It’s devastating.
There is a woman I know, K, from my days working at the hospital. She’s about 12 years younger than me and we were part of a crew that frequently went to happy hour at a dive bar across the street from our building on Fridays. Toward the end of my time in that job she met a guy and fell in love and got married. I quit that job and so did she. They had a couple kids and we lost touch except infrequent communications on FB. Right around the time she turned 30, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. So young.
She’s been very public with her struggle, as a lot of people are these days. I see posts on FB, instagram, and her blog. She’s been interviewed online and not only shared very openly about the cancer but also continues to be positive and continues to share about her family life, kids and husband. I’ve watched her kids as they have gotten older. I’ve read about the ups of being in remission after treatments with chemo and radiation and the downs of discovering that the cancer is still there.
I haven’t reached out to her. There are now hundreds, possibly thousands of people following her story. At this point I’m just a follower, a stranger who has been too afraid to reach out to her. I think.. she’s got a huge support network, and I wouldn’t know what to say anyway. Then a few months ago I open FB and see a link to her blog post and as I read I was moved to tears. The cancer has now spread, metastasised, and the news was so new they had not formed a solid action plan for next steps.
It was a routine follow up check to make sure she was still in remission. She wrote about going home and talking to the kids, still too young to understand all the consequences, but old enough to know that Cancer has been stealing time from them for several years. My heart just broke for all of them. I was in my car when I read it and just sat in the parking lot and cried.
October is breast cancer awareness month and there’s a walk next weekend in Lincoln, NE. They are taking shirt orders for her on FB for people who want to join in. I’m considering it but fearful I won’t be able to handle it. I haven’t seen her for years. My fears pale in comparison to what her family is going through, which like I said, is something I can’t imagine. The shirts have the slogan “Stage 4 Needs a Cure”. It’s too much.
That folks, is why we should all thank the Universe we are alive. Tomorrow everything can change. I don’t know if we will ever find a cure for cancer, I imagine that if and when we do, there will be other things that are far more nefarious that are taking over, like the destruction of our planet. What can we do really besides try to enjoy our short time here. Life sometimes seems very long, but it’s truly a tiny grain of sand in the grand scheme.
Love the ones you are with. Do the things you want to be doing. Don’t waste time on things you don’t.
With Much Love, 🌸💕🎀💕🌸