Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Breast Cancer Awareness

It is breast cancer awareness month. I'm sure across the country you have seen a lot of pink everywhere. I want to share a very personal story with you. Last year, I shared briefly that my aunt was suffering from breast cancer. It was a really scary time. As I reflect on it, it was much scarier than I had let on.

My aunt Lisa and I have always been close. We are pretty close in age and she was the cool aunt. She would take me for rides in her camaro with her alpine stereo blaring. Clearly, I am dating myself but you get the idea. She never treated me like a little kid.

When I went to visit my aunt last December, she was starting to get her hair back. She was still really self conscious, but I asked her if I could take a photo without a wig. This is the closest I got. I didn't want to push her. She was still really scared and I think seeing a picture with a bald head would have made it too real.

I remember trying to console her with "your hair will grow back." Who really wants to hear that? All you want is not to have to go through chemo and not to lose your own hair. When she first brought up the double mastectomy I thought it was a no-brainer, but I didn't have to go through the surgery and the reconstruction. These are all things I can clearly see now but didn't think about then.

I am so glad to report that my aunt is well. We talked tonight and finally admitted to each other how scared we both were. She is now the poster child for breast cancer in her town of Kennewick, Washington. She still visits the cancer center and has been the star in a few parades. Cancer didn't know she already liked pink. She never lost her pink eye make up from the 80's!

I love you very much, Auntie Lisa. I'm glad God had other plans for your life!

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