My oldest sister Diana was born thirteen years before I was. She married when I was in kindergarten so I don’t have an abundance of memories from when she lived at home. Fact is, we didn’t have a lot in common until I too married and had a family of my own. It was then that the years separating us in age all but disappeared.
When my daughter was diagnosed with a non-curable neuromuscular disease at age five, it was Diana that came to be with me. Every day for 5 weeks Diana was by my side at the hospital. She was there for me and for Britt. (She also kept Britt’s toenails & fingernails colorfully polished!)
Diana was a hero. Her goal in life seemed to be making people happy. She always had a joke that made everyone giggle. She always had a smile.
Diana was 45-years old when she was diagnosed with leukemia.
Within five short months she had succumbed to the disease. Diana was gone. I was devastated.
The wind was completely knocked out of me. I couldn’t breathe.
It was then that my hatred of cancer began. It was personal.
Cancer is an equal opportunity disease. It cares nothing of age, race or gender. It doesn’t give a hoot if you have a home or not; have money or not; have been healthy all your life or not. It could be waiting, just around the corner of time. Waiting to jump into our lives. Give us nightmares. I actually feel quite lucky that cancer didn’t shake my world until I was 32-years old. Way too many people have been affected by the nightmare of cancer while still a child, a teen, or whatever age. The statistics are heartbreaking.
David and I have partnered with Cancer Treatment Centers of America to learn what we can do to fight cancer and hopefully eliminate the broken hearts cancer is known to leave in its wake.
Did you know that February is National Cancer Prevention month? And did you know that there are more than 100 various types of cancers, including leukemia among them? I’d like to share a few facts specifically about breast cancer. I don’t want to scare anyone, but some of you may very well need to call your doctor to make appointments for an exam and mammogram.
- If we as women have a family history of breast cancer (mother, daughter, sister), we are almost twice as likely to develop the disease. We also have the option of discussing genetic testing with a doctor.
- If breast cancer is found and treated, 90% of us will be cancer-free after 5 years. These odds are in our favor!
- Those who are under the age of 50 should talk with your doctor about when to schedule your first mammogram.
I’ve had two mammograms in the last 10 months with results that weren’t ‘normal.’ In three weeks I have another mammogram, along with an ultra sound. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t scared. I have no family history of breast cancer. None. And nonetheless, here I am, wondering what’s to come.
I’ve been doing research with Cancer Treatment Centers of America. The website is user friendly and so far has answered all my questions. Cancer Treatment Centers of America have a number of facilities located throughout the country. Their Care Teams follow what they call Patient Empowered Care which helps you get care quickly and conveniently. It decreases the stress of scheduling multiple appointments and ensures that doctors are communicating about your care. Patients get all of their information and questions answered in a single setting. The treatment is for the whole-body, including integrative services such as nutrition therapy, naturopathic medicine, pain management, mind-body medicine, spiritual support, and so much more. They take care of every detail of your visit, from gathering your medical records, to scheduling your appointments, to booking your travel and lodging.
At a fearful and stress filled time in life, Cancer Treatment Centers of America are there to help. To comfort and lend a smile, just like my sister Diana did for me.
This is a sponsored post on behalf of ‘Cancer Treatment Centers of America’ and ‘Mom Select’. The opinions and personal experiences are all mine.