Nine-Year Cancerversary Comments from Phyllis Holder, Founder Sisters4Cure

Leave a comment

The following remarks were prompted by yesterday’s post, “Nine-Year Cancerversary.”  It was  written by Phyllis Holder, my long-time breast cancer mentor and founder of Sisters4Cure.  I so appreciate and love this phenomenal woman who has inspired, uplifted and guided me throughout the journey.

img_4002

##########

God bless you Ms. Yvonne. I love you so much. I remember the gift basket I gave you when we first met. It was overflowing with encouragement, prayers for strength and lots of love.
I couldn’t believe that Pam (and the rest of your family) trusted me enough, to turn you over to me. Combining your journey with mine has given me one of life’s best rewards.
The poem I wrote for you. The courage you mounted on wings of prayer. And grace and mercy to stare down the type of breast cancer, triple negative, that 9 years ago we knew damn little about. Just that it killed black women. No need to add the most. In all things breast cancer, black women get the short stick.
God knows I rejoice in the extra time given by our Father who loves us dearly to you, me and every woman {and black man} we have prayed for and shared strategies with. Our Father who loves us dearly said live life to the fullest. The amount of extra time? We wake up gratefully one day at a time.
Happy Canceversary Yvonne Thomas! Salute! Keep smiling. Stay woke. And keep your feet on the path. Amen and amen.

Breast Cancer: Hopelessness to Living in the Present Moment

12 Comments

In 2008, several months after my 65th birthday, I was diagnosed with Stage 1 Breast Cancer.

image

Word Swag Graphic created by SeasonedSistah2

Initially, I  couldn’t move past the negative and fearful thoughts about:

  • chemotherapy medications;
  • radiation treatment;
  • balding;
  • dying slowly and painfully; and
  • death, itself.

I didn’t see any value in expressing gratitude for the:

  • early stage 1 breast cancer diagnosis;
  • network of supportive family and friends; as well as
  • access to quality health care and treatment.

Four months after the diagnosis, I learned about a local breast cancer support group and connected with a caring group of African-American women.  Every month, we came together to:

  • listen, empathize, and support each other; as well as
  • plan activities and events to promote breast cancer awareness in the African-American community.

Five years ago, I retired and moved to Florida.  Physically, 2,000 miles separate me from my breast cancer sisters.  Emotionally and spiritually, I stay connected to Sisters4Cure.  Through them, I opened up space to receive and accept that living life to the fullest is possible even with breast cancer.

Today, I neither fear:

  • Breast Cancer, which entered my life in 2008, for it happened in my Past, nor
  • Death, which will happen, but it is in my Future.

And, I am grateful for making the Choice to let go of Hopelessness and Live in the Present Moment.