Welcome to our journey through life…We never know what is just around the corner. For me, my life changed dramatically this month. I was diagnosed with breast cancer the day before my 44th birthday. For those that didn’t know, my mother, Uela died from pancreatic cancer in 2008. Her younger sister, Sarah from stomach cancer in 2013 and their mother died in 1990 from Lymphoma.
So as you can imagine, CANCER is not a happy word in my life. Mom and Aunt Sarah were both 66 years old when they died. I remember telling my husband, “That gives me about 25 years left, so we better enjoy them and you better get used to the idea.” Well, I had no idea that just 2 years later it would be in my life.
So why am I sharing? First, for awareness. I was so busy with scouting this year that I signed my own medical form. In defense, I am a nurse (LPN) and know how to take my own weight, pulse, and blood pressure-all that is needed for a scout medical form. But 6 months ago I should have been in for a more complete gynecological screening. One out of 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her life. Let me put that into perspective. From just my mom’s side of the family from her parents there are at least 65 grandchildren, at least 154 great-grandchildren, and at least 21 great-great grandchildren. Let’s say 50% of those are girls so that means statistically 15 of my nearest relatives will be diagnosed with breast cancer. Not because they are related but because we live on earth and are women. I’m one of those 15.
Now if I can save the others from the fears that have gone through my head because they get an earlier diagnosis, you bet I want people to know! I want my family to be around and I want my friends to be around for years and years to come. Heavenly Father had to wake me up in the middle of the night for me to find my breast cancer. I am Stage 2B. 93% curable! Stage 0 and Stage 1 are 100% CURABLE!! I want 100% of you to be around to see your children grow up! Please get your screenings.
Second, I believe that I am supposed to LIVE! I believe my friends and family need to know that we can live after cancer. I believe my mom, aunt and grandmother lived courageously with cancer. They are women in my life that I hold on a very high pedestal for their perseverance, virtue, and determination throughout their whole lives. I have often wondered through the last few weeks, why me? Why me when I HATE cancer so much. But with it, I also have to ask myself, why not me? Dad use to say that cancer was a disease of love. It would make me so mad to hear that, knowing my mom was dying from it. I don’t know if I ever understood what he meant but maybe that is what I am supposed to find out.
This much I do know that God lives and loves us all very deeply. He is aware of our needs and will help us in our trials. D&C 122:9 states, “Thy days are known and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not… for God shall be with you forever and ever.” I’m planning on sticking around to raise the rest of my wild & loveable 8 children and grow old with my sweet husband. Let the fight begin!
Starting treatment at Huntsman.
Donating hair before it all goes.
New hairdo. My gem, Liza @ BYU.
Received “influential Women in Scouting” Award.