Thursday, October 4, 2007

Pink Seasons

Most of you know what's up with the pink ribbon. For those of you who do not, it is for October being breast cancer awareness month. It is a noble deed to raise funds for research and aid to those affected by it. Wearing a pink ribbon is a way to show support for cancer patients and survivors. It is a worthy subject for anyone to post on their blog. Still I hesitate to tell you what it brings to my mind.

You see, I have seen a few pink seasons. I have worked in healthcare for 25+ years. Those seasons just come with the territory. I have lost count of the number of cancer patients that I have met through the years. From acquaintances to my own family members, I have seen the ravages of the disease.

I have an aunt that is a survivor of 20 years or more. She has also survived cervical cancer and numerous skin cancers. She is a real trooper and avid supporter of the cause. The treatment for her breast cancer was a radical mastectomy, chemotherapy, and radiation. However, the cure was found in prayer and reliance on the Lord.

My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1997. To say it was a rough year of treatment is putting it mildly. For her it was surgery, chemo, and radiation. It was getting dressed and going to appointments when she was too weak to even talk. It was pain, tears, and hardship. It was a pink season alright. Every thing was colored by the cancer. Daily activities were limited. Food took on different tastes. Smells made her sick. The times were difficult but not hopeless.

Mama just took it all in stride. She held fast to her faith in God. She was certain that He would put no more on her than she could bear. Though she was off work for most of a year, she was never late paying a bill. There was always food in the pantry and fridge. Many times she had to encourage me that all would be well.

A pink season indeed. I was living 1200 miles away. Married and working full time at the local hospital. My heart ached to be with her 24/7. It just wasn't an option at the time. But thanks to some generous co-workers and a compassionate supervisor I managed to make 6 seven day trips to Tennessee that year. My faith in a loving Savior gave me the strength to do whatever had to be done.

Mama went back to work cancer-free before the year was over. She was blessed to see 3 more years before the cancer returned. Cruel thing, metastatic cancer; it was breast cancer cells, but found in her bones, liver, and brain. Floods of emotion and memories of the previous bout could not keep her down. A stalwart in the faith, she kept her focus on Jesus. She kept the faith and finished her course on August 8, 2001.

Breast cancer took her flesh but it could not take her joy. She traded an earthly home for a heavenly one. As much as I miss her, I will see her again. Yes it is important to promote breast cancer awareness. But it is more important to proclaim Jesus as the cure for the body and soul; to preach a message of hope to all those experiencing a pink season.

Note to my family: If you feel that I was too personal in this post, please forgive me. I just wanted to honor the faith of our family and proclaim the faithfulness of our God.


Rita said...

Thank you so much for sharing your personal experience with us. It is a powerful testimony of FAITH and HOPE. God bless you.

BTW, I "snagged" your ribbon to put on my blog too. ;)

Julie's Jewels said...

If people don't know its Breast Cancer Awareness Month...then they don't have their eyes open...LOL!! I'm finding pink everywhere!! Its a good cause though. Breast cancer runs in my family. My mom has had many scares with it having had to have several biopsies. I've already had to have one done..and I pray I never have to have another one done. It was negative praise the Lord...but it was a horrible experience!! What a great testimony you have given us about your mom.

Neva said...

What a beautiful and powerful post! I just know your mom would be so proud--you learned just what she was trying to teach you!

Have a blessed week,

C. H. Green said...

No, it's wonderful. I am linking to it over at The Wreath. Love you.

Shelly Belew said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story. My maternal grandmother is 15 years in remission from her bout, and my paternal grandmother shares the journey your mother made. Both women went through this while taking care of a mentally and physically challenged adult age child, talk about an inspiration!! Most people think of cancer as sickness and death, I remember strength, and grace and it left me changed. Again thanks for sharing. BTW, Miss Cyndi sent me...

Sista Cala said...

A big thank you to all who have visited here. Thank you ladies for your comments. I appreciate your support and I enjoy getting little insights into your world too.

Anonymous said...

I think this was wonderful to share with everyone.

You never know who may be passing through and needs to hear these words of faith and encouragement.

Diane said...

What a beautiful post...and beautiful way to honor your mom. She must have been a wonderful woman...for it has been said that the true character of a person can be seen in their struggle. She has left a lasting legacy.....of eternal value.


Welcomed Guests

Get your coffee and click button below

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Over 500 to sample. Enjoy.