A difficult story to tell....
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
We at the Oldham Project hear stories every day from families struggling with catastrophic health challenges, but this one still brings me to tears...
Kate (55), and her husband have been together a long time. "I'm losing my right arm." So long that he was the one to give her a 16th birthday party and next he'll be holding her as she is welcomed into Heaven to party for eternity.
Diagnosed a second time with metastatic breast cancer, she's now on her 5th experimental chemotherapy for triple negative, metastatic breast cancer.
Her positive attitude, despite the obvious, keep her, her husband and 3 grown children going. Her candid conversation is open and frank... talking about making quality time with her kids and grandkids, making memories and leaving a legacy, and some day's thinking about not buying new shoes...'because I don't know if I'll get to wear them. Some people with cancer talk about counting years or months.... I'm counting days." Doctors gave her '6 months' back in March of 2011, but here she is, Bold and Beautiful as ever!
Talking with her children, she said, "Tell me the memories that you think we'll miss." Her youngest daughter, who is 21 will miss having her Mom at her wedding and enjoying all the planning....so Kate, with her daughter, made an event of going out and choosing a wedding dress, securing a venue and even buying the accessories and jewelry for her big day.... even though she doesn't even have a fiance! Kate, thinking of her daughter, wanted to make this memory happen for her.
She's making memories with her grandkids... buying things that she'll want them to have to remember her or have later in their lives. They took a last family vacation this past spring... all of them together at Hilton Head, making memories in an overgrown cottage on the beach.
She's intent on remaining positive, making a gratitude list and having a gratitude party... counting all the blessings she DOES have. An artist, she's painted about her cancer journey and a letter to her cancer 'sisters' , which she brought to be photographed with... "hope is there."
"My kids will be fine without me....they know I'll be fine. When I was diagnosed, I told the cancer it could have that day and the day I die, but none of the day's inbetween." And she's living every day like it's the inbetween!
Labels: bald woman, bald women, Be Bold Feel Beautiful, breast cancer, breast cancer awareness, t, Terri Shaver, The Oldham Project
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