Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Livestrong 2012 Day - My Sister's Story

Kitties - the Mommie here.  I was not going to post while on vacation, but then realized what today was.  I certainly knew that October was Breast Cancer Awareness month, because you see my sister died from breast cancer four years ago.  Here is her story. 

My sister, Glenda, was a young mother of two children, ages 2 and 4 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.  She was 32.  She had no symptoms.  Glenda had gone in to have her annual exam.  She knew there was a problem when after the doctor did the regular breast exam, he paused, did it again, then said, under his breath "oh, sh*t".  Within a week, Glenda had surgery to remove her breast. 

The rest of this story is about Glenda's fierce battle against cancer.  She survived that round, but over the next 15 years, had two other rounds with the big C.  After the last time, because of the large amount of chemo necessary, her heart was damaged.  She immediately went on the heart transplant list.  After a couple of years of failing health, Glenda was admitted to ICU and her family was called to say goodbye.  In an absolute miracle, a heart became available the next day and Glenda had a heart transplant.  While her health was still comprised (don't believe what you see on TV, one does not get up and go dancing immediately after a transplant!), Glenda was given two more years of life.  During this time, she got to see one of her children start college and another graduate from high school. 

Glenda fought a long and hard battle with cancer.  She lost a breast to it, fought out two more round with it, had a heart transplant because of it and eventually lost the battle.  Or at least that is the way it looks on paper.   But see, I don't see it that way.  Yes, cancer did in the long run cause her death - but she refused to let it take her away from her kids when they were toddlers.  She denied cancer victory when it struck again and again as the children were in elementary school.  She survived a heart transplant to see her kids graduate from high school.  Cancer may have taken my sister, but before it did my sister slapped it around some and made it follow her timetable. 

20 comments:

Brian said...

Such a loving tribute. We must defeat the Evil C. It doesn't fight fair but I do believe that together we can whip it.

Katie and Glogirly said...

Your sister Glenda was a remarkable woman. The true meaning of living STRONG. We're remembering our friends and family we've lost to cancer today too. ...and those that are still fighting the brave fight for their lives.
xo, Katie & Glogirly

Hannah and Lucy said...

Your sister was very courageous and fought so hard to see her children grow up. We are so pleased that she lived long enough to give that evil C a good bash or two on the nose.
Luv Hannah and Lucy xx xx

The Cat From Hell said...

What a great post! Your sister is a hero!
Kisses Nellie and mommy

Cathy Keisha said...

My caps off to a brave woman! Purring hard for a cure. *bows head in respectful prayer* Cancer knows no biases. It affects young, old, rich, poor, black, white.

Laila and Minchie said...

Beautiful tribute to your sister. Love how she slapped it around fought it tooth and nail. We must livestrong every day and lovestrong too.

Eric and Flynn said...

That is a great tribute in honour of your sister. My mother died of metastasized breast cancer when she was 50. My father was 36 when he died from leukaemia. Cancer affects so many people and animals.
We purr and pray for the day when cancer is no more. Livestrong!

Sparkle said...

Wow, your sister was an amazing woman, who refused to let fate, and cancer, dictate her life. Purrs to you today - I actually think she won her battle in so many ways.

Marilia said...

I have lost many loved ones to this disease. And many others are in this battle!
Have a livestrong!

Jan's Funny Farm said...

Your sister was a courageous woman. We're glad she got to see her children graduate high school.

Rykers Boyz n Allie said...

Wonderful tribute to your sister. She was a fighter - and we're so very glad she grabbed onto life the way she did.

This is very personal to our family to - for a variety of reasons. Our papa works every day to save lives that have been shadowed by the big "C" and we're so terribly proud of him for it. Our grandhuman (our dad's mom) is a 30 year breast cancer survivor, and our mom's parents are both dealing with it now.

Hugs to all who are dealing with the Big Bad "C" - and ...LIVE STRONG.

CATachresis said...

Your sister was a courageous lady! It seem everyone has been touched in one way or another by this terrible disease xx

Sherlock, Ash and Traveler said...

Your sister Glenda was an amazing woman! Our grandma died of breast cancer and we send hugs to those fighting the evil C.

Andrea and the Celestial Kitties said...

Good for your sister! I'm sorry she lost in the end, but good for her kicking it around
Livestrong, everyday!

The Island Cats said...

Your sister certainly lived strong!

Nerissa said...

Hey there, Callie! Come on over to Nerissa's Life and check out my latest post. You won an award! purrs

Prancer Pie said...

Hi, we just popped over from Nerissa's. What a moving story about your sister. It is truly an inspiration to keep battling the evill "C". Have a great Wednesday.

Spitty-the-Kitty said...

What a story of courage! Her children are blessed that they will have years and years' worth of memories of their Mom to cherish through their lives. I wish she were still there with you and them, but I honor her for the battles she fought and won. XOXOXOXO

brandi said...

Lovely tribute.
We have given you a award, by the way. Come pick it up! It's for BOTH of you. So Callie, be nice and share! I'm just sayin.......

Willow said...

Your sister was amazing in her fight against cancer to livestrong and defy the evil C so that she could be with her children growing up. Purring that the new research they are doing now with Cancer Prevention Studies works to finally stops the evil C.