As November is nearing an end, so is my Giving Thanks series. I almost titled this last article as “Giving Thanks to Breast Cancer” and then I realized that was highly inaccurate. Not everyone – or anyone for that matter – would actually give thanks to such a horrible disease. While thinking more about it, I realized it was the opportunities my cancer has provided me that I was more thankful for.
Without my cancer diagnosis, I would not have stepped up to be the Survivor Chair for my local Relay for Life. I was toying with the idea to join the committee for a couple of years, but as soon as I was diagnosed I knew it was time. Relay has provided me with a community of not only survivors, but those who are honoring someone they love. I have had numerous opportunities to tell my cancer story to other Relayers to provide inspiration to them. Inspiration to keep fighting for cancer research. Inspiration to say, “Hey, this is my story. Look at what I have had to overcome in my life. You can too!” This Relay connection has also recently lead to an offer of participating in an American Cancer Society program called Reach to Recovery which partners newly diagnosed breast cancer patients with breast cancer survivors. I cannot wait to help launch this program in my community.
Since my sister’s diagnosis a year ago, the launch of our Sisters Beating Breast Cancer Facebook page has started to take shape. We are able to share our story with thousands of followers. We are able to provide other peoples stories as inspiration. We have had the ability to answer questions and provide much needed information to cancer patients that have no support system. The women we have been able to help through their battles are as much of an inspiration to us as we are to them.
When our Sisters page received the notice of others, my sister and I were approached to share our stories with the world. Having an opportunity like that was one we couldn’t refuse. Therefore, this blog was born! Having this opportunity has been a blessing in disguise. It’s definitely hard to relive my cancer story twice a week, but it’s worth the memories to help others who are reading them. I realize our story is not similar to all breast cancer patients, but it is similar to some. We are thrilled to be able to assist where needed.
Breast cancer has brought a huge opportunity of friendship; friends I would not have met if it was not for my cancer diagnosis. I cherish these newly developing friendships. I cherish those old friendships that are only getting stronger. With every scare or concern, or with every happy moment and success, I am happy to share them with my friends. We are walking hand-in-hand through the journey together.
It truly is amazing at what cancer brings to the table. Opportunity has come knocking numerous times and I have been thrilled to open the door.
New posts every Monday and Wednesday.