In the last couple of years, I have read quite a bit about survival, and I am not sure where I read this, but somewhere it talked about celebrating milestones and how important it was to commemorate important moments in your life. There are several dates that we kind of mentally remember in relation to my cancer diagnosis--the day I found the lump, had my mammogram, diagnosis, my first chemo, my last chemo, my last radiation--these we haven't really made a big deal about, it has simply been a matter of usually one or the other of us remarking, remember last year, remember the year before, where we were, how exciting it was to finish, etc. But there is one date that I think we will always celebrate and commemorate in a big way--September 19--this is the day that the cancer was cut out of my body and this day in 2009 marks 2 years that I have been cancer free. As I type this, I am pretty full of emotion. I remember going through treatment and just not knowing what the days ahead would bring--would I make it to my 1 year anniversary and I don't know that I even allowed myself to think about the reality of TWO years, it just seemed so far away. And yet, here I am, alive, still cancer free and life has returned to "normal"--whatever that means! Micah and I are both fairly sentimental and we like to have traditions and in particular, we like traditions that center around food. :) Last year, we decided that we were going to remember and celebrate every year by making a pink strawberry cake. So, that is exactly what I did this year. We have a dinner at church tonight so we did our official celebrating last night. Micah took the night off from studying and we invited some friends over and we had a great time. Today, I got up early and headed to church to meet up with my TNT group from Awana. They are 3rd through 5th graders that I work with every week and the leader Angela put a team together to walk in support of me. A few weeks ago, when she was introducing it to the kids she had asked me to go up and talk a little bit about what I had gone through. I was a little nervous at first just because I didn't really know what was going to appropriate and inappropriate, what they would understand, be confused about, etc. But, it was fine, they were really attentive and very sweet and I got really emotional at the end just thanking them for doing the walk in my honor. Today was really special. It is always very overwhelming for me to be at the Race for the Cure, just because I am confronted by a sea of women wearing pink shirts which I know all too well what that represents. Those who wear a tag that says they walk in memory of and then there is not just one, but a list of names, they always break my heart because I know that each of those names represents a family that has lost a loved one. Today not long after we crossed the finish line, I watched an older woman who had been being pushed in a wheel chair, get up and push her wheelchair across as her two friends walked carefully next to her sides. It was so much fun to do the walk with the kids and to see how impacted they were by the number of people who were there and who were wearing pink shirts. Here are a few pictures that my friend Angela took on her phone:
The whole group (we were looking directly into the sun and
it was really hard to keep your eyes open!)
With the kids that I was responsible not to lose during the race! :)
My sweet girls holding hands at the start line.
with our friends (and the cake) from last night!