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Tuesday, October 2, 2018

The Cancer Warrior

Anyone who has faced a cancer diagnosis will have strong feelings about being called a Cancer Warrior.

As we begin our 31 Day series, I feel the need to clarify and speak softly over a tender subject...

The Cancer Warrior.

I used it often as a term of endearment for friends struggling with a cancer diagnosis.  I used to think it was an encouraging word... but that was before Pancreatic Cancer came to tear up our family.

The Cancer Warrior.  This month we will find many in our cancer circle using words like warrior and fighter to express their heart.

It's true that some will rally to the Fighting Call of the Cancer Battle and embrace the Warrior in themselves...

Just as many will cringe at the Label and refuse to be coerced into the Fight.

It is a subject that mom and I talked about many times.  She was willing to fight, and she fought harder than anyone I know, but to be called a Cancer Warrior left her feeling exhausted.

She shared that more than being a warrior, most days she just felt as if her body was a battleground.  No heroine here she would say...

The doctors, the treatments, the cancer - each one brought its own misery...

The pancreatic cancer fight is daunting and ruthless.  Every cancer patient fending off treatment side-effects, pain and fatigue can understand.

At times the call to be a warrior is simply too much.

And the truth is, that when the cancer wins, the warrior has lost.

Mom didn't want that to be her legacy.  So we rarely called her Warrior.

But every moment she fought that cancer, she was fighting for more time with us, and that will always make her the most beautiful Warrior in our eyes.

When she laid down that last time, her body so fragile and ravaged from the cancer, we just held her and called her loved...

If you are walking this cancer road today, please know how entitled you are to fight this beast in any way you choose..  If the thought of being a Cancer Warrior is more than you can bear, we so understand.  May you offer your family and loved ones the grace to call you Beautiful Warrior, for that is exactly what you are to them.

Fighting cancer means fighting for more time with those you love... that will be the legacy that matters most when all is said and done.  It is the sweetest of privileges to cheer you on each step of the way.

You will always be a Warrior to us...

... and so very, very Loved.

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