I titled this post “Sixty Miles for Mom”.
It’s hard to admit.
It’s hard to write it down. To say it out loud. To inform strangers. To tell friends. And yes, to share with family.
When I read “Sixty Miles for Mom”, something deep down in me knows it’s not true……anymore.
It might have been true several years ago, while I was still in the grip of grief. Facing the memories of that hospital room and saying goodbye. Looking at the broken hearts left behind. Struggling.
But it’s not true anymore.
Those 60 miles are for me.
Some people dread phone calls in the middle of the night.
As for me, I’ve learned that devastating phone calls don’t discriminate…..they come at all times of day.
If you are fortunate, you haven’t yet experienced one of those phone calls. The ones that make you drop to your knees, literally. I hope you never get one. In my life, there have been two.
The first – well, the day I received a voicemail from my dad. I was driving at the time. My mom was in ICU, thanks to the chemo. I didn’t understand it all yet, but our lives were about to be changed forever.
The second – well, that second phone call is what this post is all about really. It didn’t happen all that long ago.
Many women quietly go in for a mammogram with all the modesty they can muster, then move on about their day, their week. Some of us, the ones who have a history in their family, wait not-so-patiently for those results.
Generally, if everything is okay (whew!), you will receive a letter in the mail. If there is something of concern, a phone call in a day or two is standard.
I’ve been known to do the “happy dance” when the envelope arrives in the mail. Oh, especially that first mammogram. Happy Dance!
In fact, a little over a year ago, if you lived on my street, you might have seen quite a sight at the mailbox. There was no waiting until I got into the garage, the house. I had to know.
“No Evidence of……….”
I didn’t need to read any further, but of course I did.
(*cue music*) Happy Dance!
A week later, I was spending the early morning snuggling with my daughter, when the phone rang.
I didn’t recognize the number, and much preferred snuggling, so I let the voicemail catch it.
It was the breast center.
I ushered my daughter into the living room, full of cartoons and toys. I headed back into the bedroom and returned the call.
The next minutes are a blur.
Two spots of concern, one in each breast.
“But I have a letter” ….I repeated over and over.
A terrible mistake. The letter was wrong. They were sorry.
I fell to my knees.
I thought of my mom. I thought of my husband. I thought of that beautiful little girl in the other room. The one with the contagious smile and Tinkerbell pajamas.
24 hours would go by before I got more results. So many emotions.
Fear and uncertainty.
Hope and courage.
Finally……relief. Sweet relief.
It’s the reason this walk come November isn’t for my mom, though you can bet I’ll be thinking about her with every step.
You’ll find me wearing my mom’s beige hat. The one with the tiny pink ribbon attached. The one she always wore instead of her itchy wig. You probably will note a few tears during the miles and I most assuredly will be honoring her memory.
But those 60 miles……they’re for me. They’re for my 5 yr old daughter. And for the hope of this disease – that it never takes another life.
Thanks to Susan G. Komen, I have been asked to be a 3-Day Blogger Ambassador. I couldn’t be more honored to share my story, my mom’s story, and help make a difference in this fight against breast cancer.
Susan G. Komen 3-Day – it’s a 60-mile walk for women and men who want to be a part of something bigger – ending breast cancer forever. Since it’s inception in 2003, it alone has raised over $740 Million.
Susan G. Komen for the Cure in 2012 alone:
- Funded more than 700,000 breast screenings for low-income women
- Provided financial/social support for more than 100,000 women, men and families battling breast cancer.
But there is so much more work to be done. And if you haven’t been touched by breast cancer yet, chances are you will, for one in eight women will hear those words “you have breast cancer” in their lifetime.
If you want to join me and others in the 3-Day, you know I’ve got some discounts!
Use the promo code BLOG3DAY – it triggers a $25 discount off the $90 3-Day walker or crew registration. Use the promo code BLOGYW2 – it triggers a $10 discount off the $40 Young Women Walking registration.
As for me, I’m in training………60 miles is no small feat, especially for one with asthma. Please keep me in your thoughts and prayers as this challenge will not only be physical, but emotional as well.
I’d love to have you encouraging me over the next 5 months too! Comments, tweets, emails, etc!
I hope that my mom will be watching from above, cheering me on. And I hope that I have made her proud.