I have several people I am especially proud of . Two of them, my mother and my friend Debbi, are battling breast cancer.
Mom has had it 3 times – she has had 2 mastectomies, radiation and chemo in her battle with this relentless disease. At 90 years old, the chemo proved to be too much for her, and she has chosen quality of life in the time she has left, verses weeks of such debilitating side effects. I applaud her strength in deciding for herself what she wants her last days to be like.
Through all this she has not lost her sense of humor, telling me that every morning. by the time she washes up, puts in her hearing aid, her false teeth, her glasses, fastens on her prosthesis and “harness” as she calls it, and puts her wig in place, it’s time for a nap! We wonder about what percentage of these morning add-ons you must have to reach android status! Now we want to get her an alert system and she sighed saying another thing to attach to my body!
Debbi has had her surgery and is about to complete her radiation, and then begin chemo after Labor Day. She, too, retains her sense of humor, saying at least with the wig she will not have to worry about bad hair days. The worst thing about it all, my mother has said, is that it changes your body image so drastically. Even at 90, she mourns the loss of the body of her youth. But these are strong women, who know what they have to do to survive, and for them, retaining their sense of humor is the key. They’ve learned to live day by day, celebrate all the moments when they feel a little better, or the sun seems a little brighter and keep on keepin on. So to them, I dedicate this poem:
My True Heroines
You are beautiful…
the light that shines from within
cancer cannot reach nor dim
your sense of humor is your strength
nothing can touch your inner grace
the body may have to take it’s blows
but as everybody knows
you are the spirit that lives within
though the body may change
you’ will always remain
a heroine to me
for you are beautiful….