Saturday, September 18, 2010

Staying Strong and looking Ahead... and holding on to Memories....

As most of you know, our family is going through a difficult time with the passing of Mike's mom, Roberta Mellon on September 15th. Thank you to everyone for the love and support. Cancer SUCKS! That is all I can say. We love you and will miss you, Bobbie.

Since my last post...

Went for my first follow up checkup with my oncologist at Dana Farber since ending treatment earlier this year. It was strange being back as someone just being followed, but not being treated. Scary thoughts tried to come up, but I reassured and rationalized with myself. I am healthy and cancer free. There is no evidence to the contrary.

I looked around at all of the other women young and old that were in the midst of it all. You could tell the ones that were there for initial consults by the paperwork they were filling out and the one's going for scans and the ones there to meet with their oncologist and go for treatment. I looked around at the support systems they brought... - the husbands, the friends, the family - each dealing with it in their own way. So many people go through that center in one day - just on the breast cancer floor -- it is unbelievable.

I sat there looking out the window of the 9th floor of the building with all of these thoughts running through my head. I was looking at the new Dana Farber building that they have been in the midst of building since I started going there. I have watched that building be built from it's foundation. Each appointment I had, some new phase of the building project was being started. I saw all of the inner beams of the building as the cranes lifted them and put them in place. On the main beams in neon paint are names painted big enough that you can see them from a ways away. I believe they are the names of children affected by and being treated at the Dana. I had the opportunity one day last winter to sign a beam in memory of my mother. The beams are all but covered up now. Now you can see the workers inside the building working in the stairwells and all over the building. I believe the building is slated to open in 2011. The Longwood Medical area in Boston seems to be thriving - it is so sad - the construction of new wings and new buildings to accommodate growing numbers of patients. Cancer patients. It is hard to believe how far that building has come in what seems like such a short time -- I feel the same way about myself and my journey. I am now more put together than I have ever been, I am strong, I have a bigger capacity to give of myself and I see a bright future ahead.

Are you wondering what is up with the Tough Warrior Princesses? We are having a reunion tomorrow (Sept. 19th) at Vicky's house. Although some of us see each other all of the time, there are others I haven't seen since our walk. I can't wait to feel the magic of what happens with the 10 of us get together. Good times!

We are working on the Oct. 1st "Pink Carpet Premiere" party to be held at the Lafayette Club at 7:00 p.m. in Amesbury. We have learned that our documentary is now complete and has been sent off to New Balance. There is a 10 minute film which will be posted on YouTube (will post the link once we have it) and used at Komen events for which New Balance is a sponsor. There is also a 90 second teaser film for New Balance Retail Stores and a 30 second spot in the works as well. They will be released on Oct. 1st and the Tough Warrior Princesses will be seeing it for the first time at the party! We hope that you are able to come join in the celebration of a beautiful journey with us. Please bring your friends. There is a $10 suggested donation at the door, as we are already fundraising for our 2011 60 Mile / 3 Day walk. We are hearing that our friends from the advertising agency, Marketing Drive will be there along with representatives from New Balance, YouTube and possibly Element Productions. The people that created this are truly spectacular and we hope to remain friends for a long time.

We are running a 5k as the Tough Warrior Prinesses on Sept. 25th in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in Boston. We have all been training and have a lot of first time runners. It has been so much fun watching friends and family that had never run before take on this challenge and I can't wait to witness them conquer it. I have a new respect and love for each of you. Determination and a goal - you can do anything! If anyone is interested in joining the team and running or walking with us that day, please let me know. The more the merrier!!

The next day, Sept. 26th is Katie's walk for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Katie has raised over $1,000 towards her cause this year and we are so proud of her!!! If you ever want to see someone with strength and determination look no further than Katie. She is my HERO. Since the day she was diagnosed with Juvenile Diabetes 2 1/2 years ago, she has been dedicated to the cause. So far in these 2 1/2 years she has raised $8,500. She deals with constant blood sugar checks, highs, lows - nurses, doctors and parents who sometimes suffocate her. She handles it all with grace and rarely complains.

I will post another blog update soon letting you know how we fared at our Reunion, the 5k Race and the Juvenile Diabetes walk. And... to remind you again on the Pink Carpet Premiere.

Thank you for all the love and support!!

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