Tag Archives: breast cancer

Breast Cancer Awareness

24 Oct

Minnesota 3 Day Supporters 2011I hate breast cancer. Granted, most would say they don’t like it, but let me be clear: I LOATHE it.

I hate what it does to people. I hate what it does to the people who love those people. I hate that it’s taken so many lives not yet fully lived. But most of all, I hate that it hasn’t been cured—so it will go on hurting and taking more lives.

This data sheet shows all of the startling stats.

My first tangible (and seemingly unfightable) villain was breast cancer. It took my grandmother when she was only in her forties. I was seven and vividly remember Continue reading

Every Woman Needs to Know This

24 Jun

Seville Alcazar Angela SueEvery woman needs to know this before your next mammogram.

It could save your life.

1. What type of breast do you have on a 1-4 scale?

  • Ask for your mammography report. It’s in there.
  • If you haven’t had a mammogram, your gynecologist can let you know if you’re in the denser camp.
  • Most women under 40 have denser breasts. That said, one third of older women do, too. In other words, don’t rule it out if you’re older, and assume you do if you’re younger.

So why do you need to know this? Because … Continue reading

Best Friends

3 Dec

Two years ago a lot of people lost their rock, friend, confidant, and biggest cheerleader. One of those people was Mae.

Sue and Mae were best friends for more than 40 years.

Best Friend

Mae wrote a piece about her friendship with Sue, and it gives me comfort to post it on this two-year anniversary. Mae was with us that longest night. She was also the one we called when we couldn’t be at Shirley’s side in her last moments. Mae was always there when we needed her most—when Sue and Shirley needed her most.

On a personal note: When I needed an extra set of arms to comfort my baby girl while I comforted Sue, Ryan, friends, family, and even myself, she was there for me, too. I’ll never forget that, Mae. Thank you.

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Mammogram, Take 3

27 Nov

Well, I’m headed off for another follow-up mammogram this morning. The timing would be almost laughable, if it weren’t so emotionally straining.

“Uncomfortable,” I’ve heard mammograms called. Physically: no. Emotionally: certainly.

If you have one coming up or are putting it off due to fear (emotional or physical), please read what I learned from my first and callback mammograms. Hopefully it will help make room for a little courage, understanding, and perhaps even some humor.

Wish me luck.

Have I mentioned I hate pink?

Follow up: All’s well that ends well. The doctor gave me the all clear. Best gift of the season!

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3 Days With Shirley

27 Aug

Shirley, overcome with appreciation at the 3 Day.

Last year at this time, I was cheering alongside Sue’s family and friends at the Minneapolis-St. Paul 3 Day for the Cure.

Standing by my side: Szaba (well, she was crawling actually), my hilarious nephew Aaron, my sweet niece Ali, and Sue’s phenomenal mother, Shirley.

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Meaning of Dreams

23 Apr

Oh, to write again! Today I’ll be pouring words onto the page and trying to organize them in some meaningful sense for me and for you. In the meantime, I wrote this (rather eerie now) piece last week, before the shock of Shirley’s death, and I feel I must share it now.

The holiday apparently stirred up my subconscious more than I realized. It’s been awhile since I’ve dreamed of Sue. Until the other night.

It’s led me on a scavenger hunt down weird corridors of the Internet, searching for viable scientific information behind the meaning of dreams.

In this recent dream, Ryan and I were enjoying some relaxing one-on-one time with Sue. She had cancer and was resting, but we were confident that, with a little R&R, she’d be back on her feet again soon.

To my shock and horror, the doctor called and informed me that I had to tell Sue she was going to die within a few days. Could she have been talking about Shirley instead?

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Mammogram Results

27 Feb

Let’s say you’re waiting for your mammogram results, and you get a callback. What next?

First, stay calm.

I got the dreaded callback, too.

Continue reading