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Dad, Mom, and baby Meghan

Dad, Mom, and baby Meghan

Meghan through the years

Meghan's age

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Trisomy 21 trio of cuties

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Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Please, no more pink ribbons, breast cancer is a deadly killer-October 2013 post

When I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003, many very sweet and well meaning people gave me items with pink ribbons on them. That did show they were thinking of me, and I was grateful, it was a pretty hard time, no truly, it completely changed who I am as a person...  I had fitness shoes sold during October that were pink with little ribbons on them, and socks, and so many pins and key chains.

 I went to Susan Komen walks and wore that pink survivor tee and marched with all the other women who had survived, and we all cried when they talked about our sisters who did not.

I lost a body part...an amputation, people hate it when I say that, ugh please, they did a MASTECTOMY, that is not the same thing as losing an arm...I beg to differ, men leave their wives after mastectomies all the time, why, because they think they are disfigured. That amputation is so much more than losing a breast, you lose your identity as a woman, since you have had those breasts since you got nipple buds at age 8-9. By the time most of us are in high school, our breasts are simply part of what makes us young women.

They allow us to feel pleasure during sex, oh, I know, not the S word, but hey, they do.

Some of us use them to feed our babies, I did, I fed precious newborns 5 times. We had a nursing relationship for 2 years plus or minus a few months, that is 10+ years of breastfeeding. I was breastfeeding when I was diagnosed with cancer.

Somewhere around the time I lost a very dear friend to breast cancer that all those pink do-dads seemed insulting. She was an early stage gal, 90% plus survival rate, and then she found some swelling over her collarbone and BAM she is now stage 4. She did not live long after her secondary diagnosis, but she tried so hard, she researched and she changed her diet and she did everything humanly possible (which means lots of chemotherapy...) She died anyway, not because she was not positive, not because she did not try. Aggressive cancer is hard to stop, and it killed her.

Every single time I see Pinktober items my skin crawls, my Mother Laquita and my sisters in breast cancer; Sharon, Deanie, Jamie, Deb, Janice, Madeline, Perlie,  Kim, Kathy L, Kathy S; these were all women I knew and loved, I shared a breast cancer journey with these women, and none of them are alive today. They were mothers, wives, single gals, animal lovers, professional writers, advocates, and all were amazingly strong women. Their lives mean so much more than a pink wash of products in October, so very much more.

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