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…in response to the reporter’s question.

The smile, the touch, the words spoken, the connection that goes beyond anything else that matters in that moment.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month here in Midland has grown, as it has in much of the country, to not only celebrate the successes of beating cancer, but also making sure that those whom are dealing with it on a daily basis are not forgotten. Up until last year, I remembered my mom’s battle with breast cancer in the late 1980’s, and imagined how much had changed through the years. She was a brave soul, whom never complained about any of the side effects, the pain, the suffering, and the loneliness that a cancer diagnosis brings. A few months ago, many of the unpleasant memories came back when my sister, Alicia, was diagnosed with breast cancer. I’ve said and written that my blog is about raising awareness and educating about Parkinson’s Disease. It is, will remain so, but I feel it important enough to share something that I’ve come to realize in the last few months.

Parkinson’s Disease and Breast Cancer are very much alike. How so? They are both vicious and relentless in their attack on the mind and body.

When I was first diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease at 42, I was convinced that my life was over. I projected myself to the latter stages of the disease because I didn’t know any better. I didn’t care to know any better until which time I felt ready to get in the proverbial ring and start the fight. Breast cancer, I feel, is much the same way. A diagnosis that hits to the core of your being, blind-siding you, and making you feel like there is nowhere to turn.

“You’re embraced” by the community that lives with the same disease, condition, illness that we have, and that means the world to us. Many times we don’t need to be told how to feel, when to feel a certain way, or how to deal with certain situations. The mental anguish of constantly thinking of what can happen is enough to make the strongest person cringe.

Embrace the many women and men whom live with breast cancer and are dealing with inner fears and anxieties by praying for them, listening to them, and, if needed, offer a helping hand..
because these are the same people, when they have beaten cancer, who will embrace those around them to make the fears and anxieties less painful.

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