HAPPY BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH!
The American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer is a walk that raises awareness and funds to save lives from breast cancer. This is a fun-filled event with live music, food, gear, photo booths, and so much more! This event is always fun because I love spirit! People get so decked out for this event, and to me, this makes all the fun!
My mom, soon to be sister-in-law Charlysce, and I, have been attending this walk for a few years now. But it wasn’t until last year that this event really meant more to us than usual. My mom had a few friends from church who were diagnosed with breast cancer years ago, and we have been a support system ever since. But on August 25th, 2017, my parents 33rd wedding anniversary, my mom was diagnosed with stage 1A breast cancer.
I will never forget calling my moms phone during that appointment to ask her what was going on because I hadn’t heard from her yet. I was anxious and sick of waiting. My mom and I are very attached at the hip, and we talk several times a day, so I knew it was bad when she hadn’t called yet. She couldn’t even get the words off of her tongue, she threw the phone to my dad, and all he said was “Aeriele your mom is upset, what do you think the diagnosis was?” and I just LOST it. I remember running into my supervisor’s office and just balling. But after our family went through the devastating emotions, we knew it was time to put our strong armor on. And we did just that!
My moms 10 month-long journey consisted of a lumpectomy, a chemo port installment, 4 injections, 16 chemo treatments, and 35 radiation treatments. Although her diagnosis was only stage 1A, the cancer was triple negative and very aggressive, so this meant more treatment. Throughout this entire process my mom continued to work part-time and maintain her everyday life. Some days of course, were extremely harder than others. I remember her sitting at the table angry because she couldn’t taste her food but the doctors insisted that she continue to eat. Water was the nastiest thing she had ever tasted lol. We made coffee ice cream shakes with Ensure drinks for her to get some sort of nutrition in her system. She lost 20 pounds and got mad every time the dietitican told her she needed to eat more or they would have to stop treatments. “Let me see you eat NASTY FOOD every day and then you can say something to me” was what she was thinking every time they met. She says to this day she still cringes when she sees the dietitican.
I think the most traumatizing experiences were when she decided to have my dad shave her head, watching her swallow 10 horse pills a day, and watching her not be able to get out of bed because she was too weak. But overall, so many people who ran into my mom during this process was so amazed at how good she looked. It was nothing but the grace of God that kept my mom so “healthy” during this journey. She was able to continue to work, she never got physically sick, and she remained in good spirits.
She has had an amazing support group and I am so thankful for that. This was a scary experience and even though we may never know why she had to go through this, God was still present throughout her journey. My mom is healthy, happy, and free! She is vibrant, beautiful, and full of life! And now we want to make a point to schedule more family bonding nights.
We will continue to be apart of this breast cancer walk, but now we will be chanting “TEAM SHARON!“
As always, follow me on Instagram and have a blessed day 💕