Pink October Seen Through The Eyes Of The Girl Who Has The Pink Ribbon Tattooed On Her Arm
Welcome to October, well a few days late that is. Have you seen it everywhere? You know… the pink ribbon. Even when I walked into my gym this morning there were shirts right in front with the pink ribbon proudly displayed. Yesterday my freshman came home from school and was wearing a small pink ribbon button on his shirt. October pink is everywhere and there is no ignoring it.
It has been five years and six months since I myself was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of thirty-one. A few years ago I hated.. no I think I despised the pink ribbon. When you are in the midst of having breast cancer you see the pink ribbon at every turn. The baking isle on cookie cutters, even getting eggs I have seen the ribbon stamped on fresh eggs. When you are waking up from having your breasts removed I wanted nothing to do with the damn pink ribbon. It was only a constant reminder of what was happening to me.
However today I have started to feel a bit different. This morning in the gym I slowed down and actually browsed the shirts and even contemplated getting one. As a birthday present to myself on my thirty-fifth birthday I even included the ribbon in a tattoo I had wanted for years. The farther I get away from my diagnosis I have embraced that little ribbon a little more each passing year.
It is what it is… just a simple ribbon that is pink and reminds me that now I am a survivor, I was part of a club that I didn’t want to be in but was mandated to join. I also however step back and am a firm believer that cancer should be funded equally. One cancer is not better or worse than any other. Cancer sucks, any kind of type is and can be devastating for all involved. No one needs any ribbon to know that.
Though I am now five and half years passed cancer, it still follows me. Once you’re in the club you don’t want to be in you must follow the rules. You must take care of yourself, see my doctors, do genetic testing to make sure my kids are not at risk and now one more surgery. I used to hate this part too, the follow ups, the worry before each new procedure, test or appointment. Now I find myself just simply thankful for medical care and an amazing team of doctors who are looking out for me.
So today I guess I embrace the pink ribbon, because it is part of my journey my story. I am also gearing up for another surgery. Another piece of me will be gone, and how I will be when I wake up we will have to wait and see. Menopause is coming.. actually it is only weeks away now for me at the age of thirty-six. The good news… well no more periods (Sorry if that was TMI) but the bad news, well let’s just say I am hoping I don’t turn into a raging bitch!
Just one more step for me to make sure I am doing everything possible to remain cancer free. Yet I know it is a crap shoot really. Why does one get metastatic cancer and one lives until ninety? We all have no idea about our death or our lives. We may think we have it all figured out, but do we really?
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