It’s amazing how sometimes we are able to hear everything. It’s a Thursday afternoon and I am sitting on the porch at one of the grandmother’s homes and I can hear everything. I can hear all the leaves on all the trees. I can hear all the insects, even the ones burrowed in the dirt. My children are playing on the sidewalk with bubbles. They are laughing and talking. They are enjoying each other without any cares in the world.
They are oblivious to the fact that all across the world people are in constant fear and turmoil. They are unaware that men that look like them are being murdered by those who took an oath to serve and protect. They don’t know that they too, will later be prejudged by the color of their skin and not the content of their character. It’s really saddenning.
Moments after, I am faced with the thought that things could always be worse. My kids still have me and I still have them. And for this moment, I am going to enjoy it. Nothing else in the world matters at this moment. I am here, I am healthy and I am going to listen.
Today is the eve of my last Chemotherapy treatment and I couldn’t be more excited! As I sit back, I am reminded of so many things as I made it through this part of my journey. I will never forget the day that I actually discovered my own lump (early detection is key!). Honestly, I wasn’t purposefully doing a self-exam, it was just discovered while showering. The same night, I remember crying hysterically because somehow I just knew it was breast cancer. I am notorious for experiencing symptoms, googling and then self-diagnosis. Unfortunately for me, this time, I was right. The next 10 days went by so fast and the next thing I know, I was headed to outpatient surgery for placement of a medi-port. On the day of my diagnosis, a decision was made that a positive attitude would only be accepted. I only allowed myself a few minutes to cry about it on that day. That doesnt mean that I didnt have my moments during the process but I didn’t want any pity parties and I wanted to be vocal about it. I decided to trust God and God’s word for a complete and miraculous healing and the only way for people to witness it would be if I talked about it and I showed them. Being transparent also held me accountable for my own faith as well. I wasn’t sure of what to expect from the treatments. The doctor had prepared me for many side effects, most of which I was very blessed not to experience. My first 4 rounds of treatment were the most aggressive. This mix of medicines included the infamous “red devil.” The side effects alone were enough to make me want to run and hide but it was only by the grace of God that I experienced minimal discomfort. Sixteen total rounds of Chemotherapy and I’m done. One thing that I’ve learned on this journey is to celebrate along the way. And this weekend, I’m going to celebrate. It’s no coincidence that my last Chemotherapy session is happening the same weekend as National Cancer Survivor’s Day. This weekend will be one full of celebration and fun and I’m so grateful!
D-e-a-t-h. When combined, they are the five most powerful letters in the world. There is nothing that can save you from it. What is ironic is that death is accepted as a fact of “life.” It is what compelled me to write today.
Today, death has claimed the life of someone that I didn’t know. I’m sure you’re saying, that happens everyday, all the time; but this time, it is different. This someone was my sister. My Pink sister. Even though I never met her, we were the same. Both plagued with this fear that “today” would somehow come sooner for us than it would have under normal circumstances. Our worst fear came true for her today; A 37- year old mother of two beautiful little girls died today. Two little girls that will have to experience life without their mother. And no one will be able to tell them why.
Years ago, I used to be so obsessed with just the thought of death. I wasted time, a lot of time thinking about what things would be like after I died. My fascination was the very moment of death. I wanted to know how it felt. Would I know that I was dying, is it going to be painful? What happens after I die, am I going to be reincarnated and come back to live another life? So many questions but no answers. To be continued…
The following is information that I have included in my flyer informing people about my online breast cancer support group, “My Pink Haven.”
As one can imagine, being diagnosed with breast cancer was the worst day of my life. I, like many others, looked at my diagnosis as a death sentence. However, I was determined that I was not going to leave my babies. They needed their mommy.
I’ve met some wonderful women on my journey. Being diagnosed with Breast Cancer at the age of 35 was one of the most mentally challenging things that I have ever had to go through. I was prepared for the worst but I am so thankful for my journey. It was important to maintain a positive outlook. This was why I was inspired to start an online support group. More specifically, I wanted to connect women in the state of South Carolina, so that if they ever desired to meet, it would be feasible. With the group being online, it allows women to participate from the comfort of their own homes. I want to encourage other women and to give them a place where they felt comfortable. It’s not always easy to talk to our friends and family about what’s going on with us. Many times, they don’t understand. Other times, we may be too embarrassed to discuss certain things. This is why I was inspired to start My Pink Haven.
My Pink Haven is exactly as the name suggests. It is a place where women from all over South Carolina whom are battling breast cancer can go for encouragement, advice and support from other cancer fighters and survivors. My Pink Haven provides a platform for women to share without the fear of being judged. It’s also a place where they are free to post questions, concerns and praise reports, etc. All member information (profile names, posts) is confidential and should not be discussed outside of the online forum.
Steps to join My Pink Haven:
1. Send a inbox request to join to my personal FB account “Grace Favor Mercy”
2. Send an email request to firstname.lastname@example.org