For Me

Pink ink…

One day she woke up and her world was changed forever. She was faced with a reality she never dreamed possible. *

A 40 something black woman comes home from a breast advocacy meeting to find a lump in her breast. Viewers learn she had a clear mammo just months prior. Chemo, double mastectomy, radiation with 3rd degree burns and more are captured in a blog she creates with her “sister”.

“Crazy! You wouldn’t believe it if you didn’t know it was a true story!” –California
“It leaves you wondering, when will it end!” –Illinois

A year ago TODAY, my life changed forever. A year ago TODAY, I found my lump. A year ago TODAY I entered Life in the Cancer Lane. Little did I know what a year it would be.

When I awoke this morning, I didn’t know what I would feel. Would I cry? Would I not feel…anything? What would this day look like? Well, the day has started off the same as every morning, except it’s raining…in Phoenix! Lol! Big B and I gave each other an extra long hug and reflected on the fact that we made it a year. Then we sent Lil B off to school.

I remember finding the lump that could have killed me, would have killed me, like it was yesterday. I knew it was cancer, immediately. If you knew me then, you will remember that I was calm. Deep inside, I must have known it was about to be a rollercoaster ride. As I sit here trying to capture what I was feeling, what I am now feeling, the only word I see is…CALM. That is a blessing, as I face yet another surgery in 3 days.

I will face many “anniversaries” over the months to come. It will be interesting to see how they affect me, and my love ones. For now, I am happy for the calm.

Determined not to be a victim to…anything
She decided to set a new course for her life.
She never dreamed
The devastation she…faced
Would be the refiner’s fire
That turned her life around
She is now the epitome of a true survivor.*

Today, I CELEBRATE this anniversary. I celebrate the day I saved my life. I celebrate the fact that I had the courage to tell somebody, to immediately call my doctor. I celebrate that I am ABLE to share my story! I celebrate that I chose, that I STILL choose, to FIGHT!

Ironically, today is Stand Up To Cancer Day, replete with a concert & telethon! (Check your local listings!) The SU2C org asks “who do you stand up for?”

Today, I stand up…for me!

*Suzy Toronto (abridged)

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Andrea Smith
    Sep 07, 2012 @ 17:05:59

    Wow! So encouraging and so glad you have chronicled this past year. It is really helping me with my perspective on so many things. I still have my struggles, but every post encourages me. So proud of you Barbra and so grateful that you came into my life.


  2. helen imes
    Sep 07, 2012 @ 20:39:28

    Beautiful video. I will be part of a Sista Strut here with the Kappa Karavan on 10/06 to heighten the awareness of breast cancer in women of color ‘.Know that we are always with you in prayer now and especially on Monday for your surgery. I read your blogs and share with you as a SURVIVOR. I will never forget my day of the discovery either, but it remains just that ….a memory of 11 years ago. This, too shall pass and for you, too. Love you MONA


  3. Regina Spellers Sims
    Sep 08, 2012 @ 11:32:11

    Yes you are a survivor! Much love Gina #14


  4. TME
    Sep 08, 2012 @ 15:08:31

    Love you, BWats. Calm, cool and thriving! I STAND UP 4 U!


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