Pink is not my color. I remember the first pink ribbon pin I was given from a friend when I was diagnosed. I put it in my jewelry box and left it there because I don’t wear pink. Now I treasure that pin.
Several years ago when I was asked to participate in a discussion with women who have metastatic Stage 4 breast cancer I was momentarily frozen and couldn’t find words to explain the fear that struck in my heart. I was certain I would not know what to say or add to the discussion. I just sat and listened to them.
These are the women I am writing about today. Many of them do not think pink. Awareness is something they know 24/7/365 and most of them are in treatment every day.
I have over 20 friends who have lived for years now with the discovery of amazing chemotherapies. I have a dear friend in California who is treatment and disease free for the first time in 7 years. I have a friend in Kansas City who goes for IV infusions every month and is 14 years past her metastatic disease diagnosis. Both of these women are NED – no evidence of disease in their bodies, and treatments keep them that way for now. I have lost 5 friends.
This year I want to salute these women, the ones who shout the loudest that they are aware, and we all need a cure. These are my heroines in the pink life. They are mothers, wives, grandmothers, sisters and friends.
I will leave you with this thought. Mammograms save lives and the timing of a getting a mammogram saved my life. Get yours annually and regularly. If you have a feeling that something is not quite right – get it checked. You know your own body, listen to it.
There is an organization that has put the medical research world on notice – January 1, 2020 – that is the deadline for a cure. They did the research on what it would take, how long it should take, using the amount of brilliant minds in the world. The clock is ticking.