I, like pretty much everyone else, have had friends and family affected by cancer. Who hasn't anymore? Have you ever sat in prayer for a friend or a family member who is suffering from cancer or the treatment of the cancer and wished you could do more? Yeah. Me too. I want to tell you a couple of stories of people I have been inspired by.
I have an aunt who was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was still a teenager. A lot of the suffering that she endured was hidden from me to protect me, but I still remember it. I remember that she had a double mastectomy and had implants put in. I remember the day one of her implants sprung a leak and she was leaking fluid from her breast. How embarrassing. But, she endured it all with a smile on her face.
I have a friend who's daughter was diagnosed with Wilm's, a cancer of the kidneys that occurs in children. She was just a baby. She had to endure chemo, radiation and have parts of both kidneys removed. It was a very very scary time. Then after a few years she had a bad scan and had to go back through treatments again. She's doing very well now, and her mother has affectionately, (and appropriately I think) nicknamed her "Little Warrior". She has a Caring Bridge Website, if you'd like to read more.
I have a friend and pastor who has been an amazing source of strength to me. She is always thinking of others before herself, and a true testimony to God's work in her life and answering the call. She recently got married and then took on a position as senior pastor over a small church. Within a couple of weeks she was diagnosed with Stomach Cancer and had to have her stomach removed, chemo, radiation, the whole lot. It's been a very difficult road for her, but one filled with prayer and one that has touched many lives.
I have a neighbor whose wife was diagnosed with breast cancer many many years ago, and she too had to do all the usual things. She made it through and was in remission several years and then it was back again. Back to the treatments she went, and watching her go through those treatments was very difficult, but I know I had it easy. Her son is Auston's age. Last year they found her collapsed on her desk at work. After all her trials with breast cancer, it was brain cancer that killed her.
These are just a few of the people in my life who are affected by cancer, there are more, my family has a bit with skin cancer, prostate cancer, my husbands as well. The truth is each and every single one of us is affected by cancer in one way or another. I have in the past had my hair cut and donated it to Pantene's Beautiful Lengths program. I chose Pantene over locks of love because I only needed 10 inches instead of 12.
Well, this year I'm "Kickin it up a notch" in honor of the many people in my life who are so brave to fight this horrible disease, including Martha, Marena, Janet, and JoAnn. I'm going to have my head shaved to raise money for St. Baldrick's, an organization that contributes to cancer research. This event is being organized by Little Warrior's mom, so you can rest assured that the money will be used wisely. Please, if you will, consider donating to my head, and if you've been affected like I have by cancer, please leave a comment in honor of your loved one on this blog post :)
Oh, did I mention? My husband and I are BOTH doing it! We're on a team together... I'd REALLY REALLY like to raise more money than him... Can you get on board with that?????
Yeah.... and I'm just a *little bit* nervous.... Mostly because we're leaving for vacation the NEXT day to see friends and family we haven't seen in years ..... ah well... it's just hair, right??????????