Anyone who knows me knows that my mom has had breast cancer for the past 15 years. In April 2018 she was diagnosed with stage IV metastatic cancer where it had spread to other major organs. She has been such a great influence and I can think of no one stronger or more deserving of life than her. She is the most selfless person I know, raising my brother and I while suffering through treatment after treatment, all the while steadfast holding a positive attitude.
If any of us had half the strength she does, we'd be immortal.
Some of the things I've learned from her especially compared to my other relatives who have passed from cancer (her father and brother-in-law) is just how important it is to have a positive attitude and continue fighting no matter what. She has never backed down from the challenges this disease has presented, seeking novel treatments and being the guinea pig. Her cells are all over the world in likely hundreds of laboratories, likely in textbooks for generations. Everything she does is to help others, even in the fight, the research that can be done can help so many others.
My family and I are in a unique position having been exposed to the patient side of cancer research and development for the past decade and a half, and it's incredible how far the treatments have come. If the cancer were stage IV on her first dignosis, it would be a toss-up if she were still here today, but now it's no longer a death sentence. It's not without its tribulations, but it's already been two years since the diagnosis, so obviously something is working.
Today, I found out that she is in a lot of pain. The cancer has spready to her spine in this latest bout and she is in the hospital now. It's times like these that I'm reminded how fragile life is, how even the smallest things can compound and destroy everything so easily. We hope and work to pull her through, but there's still reason to prepare. I hate it, but I know it has to be done.
I'm not ready. I'm just not ready. This can't be her time yet because it's not right. It's not fair - and I know life isn't fair, this shouldn't have happened in the first place, especially to her, but this is just rediculous. And yet, somehow she still is happy through a rough childhood, divorce, and this perpetual nightmare. If tht does not command your respect and admiration, I don't know what will (now granted, I've glazed over the details, but I think even the surface level should show it).
So tonight she needs to make it, because she's done it before, and she can do it again. She just retired this week, and she deserves a break, more than anyone.
Anyways, my stream of consciousness is starting to ramble, so as a closing remark: just remember to give people flowers while they're still around to smell them.