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May 2012: A Mother’s Day Wish

A Mother’s Day Wish

With Mother’s Day just around the corner, I’m sure that, like me, many of you are thinking about all the wonderful women whose time with their children was cut far too short after a breast cancer diagnosis. For me, it was the grandmother I never met.

Since we started the Love/Avon Army of Women in 2008, I’ve had one volunteer after another tell me that they decided to sign up for the Army of Women because their mom or grandmother had had breast cancer or because they were a mom and they feared their daughter would one day be diagnosed with this disease.

There were women like Samantha who told me:

I just had a little girl last year in October. Her grandmother sadly passed away from breast cancer before she even had a chance to hear the wonderful news. I am becoming a volunteer for both of them. Let’s fight this battle together.

And women like Jeanne, who wrote:

For Pearl (my Great Grandmother), Millie (my Grandmother), Jacqueline (my Mother)….all of whom died of this dreadful disease I’ve joined this Army to fight this fight. And for Jennifer, my niece, in the hope that she will never be afflicted with it. This disease has taken a huge toll on my family and I hope to live to see it eradicated. God’s Speed

And Theresa, who said:

Being 43 and newly diagnosed with breast cancer, I can’t help but think about all the special women in my life and how I never want them to have experience this (especially my two young daughters).

It is these women, and others, who are on my mind when I think about the work that the Foundation has done and what we need to do next to move breast cancer research forward even faster. Everyone who comes to know me quickly learns two things about me: I’m inpatient, and I’m in a hurry. I want to end this disease. Now.

Lenore said...

I’ve signed up and joined with An Army of Women because the 2nd hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my life was tell my college aged daughter that I had breast cancer.
The hardest thing was losing her older sister to cancer 13 yrs earlier at age 12.
I did all I could do on my end to eradicate the disease from my body once and for all…never wanting to have to come back to her and say ” I probably should have done…”
I honor all of the women I have known before me that have had breast cancer. When my first friend died I was a very young mother, and ignorant to the fact that someone could actually “die” of breast cancer. I knew 11 more after that…none survived.
I am a 26 yr. survivor this June.(Dr. Susan Love’s Breast Cancer Book was my Bible…even way back then!) I am blessed to know so many more survivors after me.
As survivors I believe we have a responsibility to our heirs… as well as to our ancestors that have passed from it.
It’s easy to become complacent after so many years, but when I look at my 34 yr old daughter I know its the future we need to look toward.
Thank you Dr. Love …and all of the people in “the background”
Lenore Steinecke

Susan said...

I was diagnosed at age 47 in 1993. I am a Survivor! graduating with my ADN. I will be making a difference again soon! I am so grateful for Dr. Susan Love and her research efforts. When I was diagnosed I read her book and learned so much about myself and my body. Thank you, Dr. Love!

So Sincerely,
Susan Nasif

Hilary said...

This will be my first Mother’s Day without my mom…..she passed away from Breast Cancer on Sept. 8 and I miss her every single day. My siblings and I will celebrate Mother’s Day with her in spirit…….and will make a wish that someday no one else has to celebrate Mother’s Day without their Mother.

Theresa said...

I lost my mother 37 years ago from breast cancer when my son was only 6 weeks old . I miss her everyday and am sad that my son never got to know his grandmother and what a wonderful woman she was. We have made great strides in the past 37 years and must continue the fight so that one day this disease will be non-existent. Thank you, Dr. Love.

Joyce said...

I lost my Mom when she was 52 to Breast and Lung Cancer. I am now a mother with a daughter the same age that I was when my mother died. She was afraid to have her first Mammo, which she needed to have early because her other grandmother died very young also from Breast Cancer. So, I let her come in when I had my yearly mammo. Thank God she’s not afraid anymore.

Jane said...

Like so many others who have posted here, I, too, lost my mother to breast cancer, exactly three weeks after Mother’s Day in 2010. What we didn’t know at the time was that she was positive for a BRCA mutation which she’d passed along to me. Although it’s not something I would wish on my worst enemy, it was, in fact, a gift. Once I knew I had it, I could take steps to protect myself and in the last 16 months, I’ve had all the prophylactic surgeries. It’s highly unlikely that breast cancer will be a part of my future…and that’s exactly what I wish for all women!

Karen said...

I signed up as my dream is that my 2 daughters will never have to hear the dreaded words that I heard 6 years ago… “you have breast cancer”…one daughter is turning 26 later this week and the other is 14…for me its more of a reality for my 14 year old….we continue to loose to many wonderful women (and men) to this darn disease….

Ellen S. said...

For the grandmother I never knew & since I’ve had 2 biopies, I joined the Army of Love to find a cure. Or just to find out a way to eradicate breast cancer all together. I just wish more women would join us.

Nanci said...

I applaud the work you are doing and I look forward to the day, in the not too distant future, that we will see a cure.
I am very lucky that this terrible disease has not touched anyone in my family however it did claim far too many of my dear friends who I really miss.
I joined the Army of Women at the get go and I would welcome the opportunity to participate in one of your studies but so far I haven’t fit the criteria.
Keep up the good work and thank you for all you do.

Denice said...

I am the first, and I pray the only one, in my family to be diagnosed with breast cancer and I’m a seven year survivor. I have a daughter, 3 granddaughter’s and now a great-granddaughter in addition to 2 sisters. Thank you to the Army of Women for all you do to help find a cure so that I can say that cancer stopped with me!

Addie said...

My older sister died of breast cancer on June 16, 2009. She was diagnosed at stage four because it was behind her clavicle and went unnoticed during mammograms. It was devastating to her children, and to us three remaining sisters. We immediately joined the Army and are willing to go to any lengths to stop this killer of women. I hope studies are needed in the Mobile, Alabama area and I can volunteer. I miss her every day.

Kate said...

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003. I have a daughter and don’t want her to go through this often lonely battle. I will do whatever I can to help the Army of Women. Thank you for all that you do!

Lisa said...

This Mother’s Day will be my first without my mom, unlike my grandmother, aunt and cousin who are all survivors of breast cancer. My mother was taken by AML (acute monocytic leukemia) April 21, 2012. I joined the Army after meeting Dr. Susan Love because no matter what type of cancer, we need to join forces together against this cruel disease.
Mom I love you…thank you for giving me the strength to make a difference.

Nadine said...

I was diagnosed 2 yrs ago at 48 yrs old with no family history so it was quite a horror and shock!! I walk the breast cancer walks to raise money and joined this also, to do everything I can to ensure I survive to see my 4 yr old granddaughter and twin granddaughters (still in utero) never have to face this horrible disease!!!

Susan said...

I was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 56. At that time my daughter was 35 and her daughter was 15. Since I was the first in my family to have breast cancer (I also have two sisters) everyone has been advised to have regular screening. My daughter is now almost 40 and is aware that she needs to be screened regularly. Naturally my concern is for them and their future health. I signed on with Army of Women to do what I can to prevent this disease from affecting them and future generations.

Christine said...

It has been 20 years since the first breast cancer hit my family, first my Aunt, and then my Mother, both survivors, and now me. At the age of 42, in the prime of my life, did all I was suppose to do to never get it again, but it came back anyways. Now at the age of 50, I am fighting each and every day to stay alive, and will have to do it the rest of my days. During this journey I met a man who had lost his wife at the age of 48 years old, leaving two young daughters and a son without a mother. Now between his two daughters and my daughter, I cannot believe we have not gotten closer to the cure. I stand next to so many women in this fight, and more then anything in my life, I would love to know I will have 30 more years with my grandson. I am grateful for the Army of Women, and Dr. Susan Love. Please keep on with this battle, I, We, Need You.

Meryle said...

I joined because I lost my cousin to breast cancer in her early 50s. She was like a sister to me. Her mother, my aunt, died of breast cancer at age 42 leaving two children under 16. I want this to be a time when we no longer lose our mothers, grandmother, aunts and friends to this awful disease.

Katherine-Marie said...

My mother was diagnosed in 1976 and they gave her 5 years even with the with surgery and chemo. She will turn 79 this year. Over the last 36 years she has been my best friend. We have traveled the world, lunched, shopped, gossiped, read, laughed, and cried. She has cared for (and is still doing so) both of my children while I worked and is such an integral part of life, that I cannot imagine it without her. My husband lost his mother at 16 to breast cancer and still suffers the loss over 20 years later. I am doing this so other children can keep their mothers, too.

Deborah said...

I would like to pay tribute to my mother for helping me through my journey through breast cancer treatment. Words cannot express how thankful I am. She traveled from Jacksonville, FL. to Biloxi, MS. every three weeks to help me through the first week of each chemo treatment. She eased me through the hard effects I had with each chemo like forcing me to eat 1/4 of a sandwhich every few hours or else I wouldn’t have eaten anything. The nausea and vomiting were severe during that time. It never went away despite all the drugs to combat it. I later found out I have Gastroparesis and they fitted me with a gastric pacemaker. I suspect it was caused from the chemo, but no one is for sure. My mother has been my rock. Then 1 year later, one of my sisters was diagnosed with breast cancer and she again, helped her through her active treatment by traveling to Washington DC to help her. Happy Mother’s Day, Mom. I love you very much.

Jilana said...

I joined the Army of Women as soon as I heard about it at the 2008 New York Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. not only am I a 5 year survivor myself, but I lost my own mother to this terrible disease at the age of 16. My mother was only 46 and left me, my sister and my father. I have been deeply affected by this loss and I am just glad that there has been support of research on this disease so that I can count myself a survivor.

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