In honor of Mother’s Day, Living Beyond Breast Cancer welcomes back to two bloggers who wrote for us throughout the entirety of their treatment. In this particular entry, Jackie Roth shares what Mother’s Day means to her as a woman living beyond breast cancer.
There are so many ways that we can choose to honor our mothers, wives, sisters and friends who have been diagnosed with breast cancer during the month of May. Some people choose to do a walk, race, or large event together, while others choose things like dinners, cards, and just spending time together. Unfortunately, I do not have these options to celebrate with my mom. I cannot send my mom flowers, a card, or a gift. I cannot take her to dinner or spend a day doing one of our favorite activities, which was shopping. I cannot have her join me as I partake in the breast cancer awareness events during the month of May.I lost my mom almost seven years ago to colon cancer. She was diagnosed at the age of 48 with Stage IV disease, and passed away at the age of 49, just six short months after being diagnosed. She fought as long and as hard as she could, yet the odds were stacked so heavily against her.
It has been so difficult getting through my cancer treatments without her. Mothers have a magical touch that can sometimes just make everything better, even if that thing is your own cancer. I know that somehow she could make it all go away. Although she was not here to hold my hand during chemo or take care of me after my multiple surgeries, I know that she was watching from above and protecting me along each step of my cancer journey.
So, the way that I will honor my mom this mother’s day is by surviving. Continuing to get up and face the day no matter how sick my cancer treatments have made me feel. I will spread the word about cancer and continue to work in my job as a cancer researcher. My mom was not given much of a chance to survive, so I am doing it for her…for us. I am almost two years out from my diagnosis, and I am preparing for my final reconstructive surgery next week. This surgery represents a closing of the cancer chapter in my life and a chance to move on.
There are still quite a few days before I can think about becoming a mother myself. My husband and I will not be able to have children for another 5 years or so due to my medications. Ron and I do not know if we will face any challenges when trying to start a family because of all of the chemotherapy that I had. But that is a challenge that is far off in the future and we both have hope that things will work out just the way they are supposed to for us.
It is wonderful to have so many events surrounding Mother’s day to show the women in our lives how much we care. After I recover from my surgery, I will be celebrating with my grandmothers, mother-in-law, step-mother, sister, and friends. My experience has shown that things can change quickly, so you should take each opportunity to honor your mothers and other survivors as if every day was Mother’s day.
How are you honoring the women in your life this Mother’s Day? Visit our website, here, to make a donation to Living Beyond Breast Cancer in HONOR of the “mothers” in your life.