When I was about 10 years old, my paternal grandmother became very ill. Unsure what was wrong, the doctors performed an exploratory surgery. They discovered cancer. In fact, she was riddled with cancer. The official diagnosis was liver cancer, but they didn’t know where it had originated. She was too sick to go through any procedures to try to determine it’s origin. She went home and suffered a long, slow, cruel and painful death.
Years later, her daughter was diagnosed with breast cancer. Fortunately, my aunt’s cancer was caught early and she was treated successfully. But we now believe that my Grandmother’s cancer likely started in her breasts.
It’s strange how some people can go through treatment successfully and end up cancer-free, but others can’t. I am sure there are reasons for that, but I don’t know what they are. You would think that age would have something to do with it, but that’s not always the case. My aunt was in her sixties when she was diagnosed & successfully treated. However, a friend of mine that I’ve known since Kindergarten was not so fortunate. She was only in her mid-thirties when her breast cancer was found. She began treatment and fought for nineteen months. When I reconnected with her on Facebook and learned of her cancer, she was very upbeat about her treatments being successful. On her profile, it said “I can’t wait to say that I’m cancer free. My family deserves that!” She was married with three young children. But her wish did not come true; she lost that nineteen month battle just last month.
I want to live in a world where this doesn’t happen. Where cancer doesn’t steal Mommies from babies. Daughters from mothers. Wives, sisters, aunts, friends…and fathers and sons. Let’s not forget that men can also get breast cancer, as my friend LouCeeL reminded me. He also lost a friend – a male friend – to breast cancer. To quote him: “A friend of mine died of Breast Cancer. A man. Most people lose sight of the fact that men get breast cancer, too. And when we do, it’s more often fatal because we find it later than women usually do. Please. Man or woman. Do self exams. If you’re a man, ask your wife, girlfriend, mother or doctor how to do them and do them properly. But DO THEM.”
We need to find a cure. But until we do, take care of yourself and do your self exams. Early detection is so important. Give yourself a chance to fight.
YOUR family deserves that.
Thank You For Sharing This, Cyndy.
You Can find Cyndy blogging at Putting The Fun in DysFUNctional