Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I am sure that you have been seeing those little pink ribbons pop up in random places (clothing, bumper stickers, grocery bags, facebook profiles, etc).  Everybody knows what they are.  The ribbons have become so common that people don’t even stop to associate them with sickness, suffering, and death.  To many, they are simply a cute marketing scheme that does not affect them personally (thank goodness!)

But to cancer survivors and our loved ones, these ribbons symbolize strength, patience and bravery.  They represent our dark moments, despair and grief, and also our pride and accomplishment.  Although nobody thinks that they will be unlucky enough to get breast cancer, let these pink ribbons remind you to be your own advocate when it comes to your body and health.  Become educated, overly cautious, and persistent, because nobody else is going to fight for you.  This is true not just for this month, but throughout the entire year.

Lately I have been thinking about how much I have changed since my diagnosis/treatments, becoming a mommy, and supporting my mom through her own battle with cancer (all in the same year).  I think that the most important lesson for me has been to become at peace with the fact that I will never know what the future holds.  With true acceptance of this, I value each day for it’s miraculous beauty without feeling worry about what may or may not come.  The future isn’t an issue, because right now, in this moment, I am loving everything around me and everyone here with me.  When I leave the future up to God, I am free to fully enjoy the moments of my life as they happen.

The other night I actually gave myself my own Lovenox shot in the tummy.  Yes, it hurt and felt like bee stings for about ten minutes, but I barely noticed because I was so proud of myself for overcoming my biggest fear that I have had since childhood.  This personal accomplishment may not sound like much to some people, but I know that I have come a long way from being a needle phobic.

I strongly believe that anyone can do anything that they set their minds to.  I know it sounds cliché, but I have learned from experience that our minds are so much more powerful than we give them credit for.  Positive thoughts can make all the difference in determining whether your situation is a hopeless tragedy or a life-changing opportunity for personal growth.  I think that if we can gain this perspective while we are young, it will make the rest of our lives much more enjoyable and fulfilling.  


  1. Great post Dana! Before BC, I was such a planner, but my diagnosis & journey has taught me that some things you can't plan for! I too am just enjoying the moment.

    Great job overcoming your needle fear. I had to do daily injections when I did IVF & I couldn't bring myself to do it, so my husband stepped up to the plate.

  2. I think it's huge that you gave yourself a shot. I have no fear of needles but the thought doing it myself freaks me out. It's amazing how young you are and how much you went through and how strong that made you!

  3. @Alexis- Wow, I don't think that I could give myself DAILY injections either! But I feel like if I need to do IVF (in the future) I will be able to handle it better than I would have before.

    @Elena- Thanks! I do feel like I have completely changed as a person after all of this.


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