It's the phone call you dread ever getting and hope never happens to you. The world seems to stop still for a moment, while you struggle to comprehend what you're hearing. Your sobs kick in and you're crying before it even really registers that the most beloved person in the world, the one you always thought was invincible has said "I'm very sick. I have cancer and the doctors say it's aggressive"
Journal excerpt, December 2011
Before my mum was diganosed, I never really knew how prevalent breast cancer was - one in every eight women are diagnosed with some form of the disease. We caught it early; following a few months of treatment mum is officially in remission and we're celebrating with our family in New York right now. We all feel very lucky.
The treatment was hard for all of us. Nothing can really prepare you for watching someone you love be treated for such an aggressive disease in such an invasive way. An amazing person I know - E. - shared this advice, and I returned to it time and time again while I was in Australia supporting my mum and sister:
Just remember to allow yourself to feel what you feel with no judgments
Allow yourself breaks...emotionally as well as physically
Allow yourself to be a daughter
Allow your mum to be your mother
But most important to remember is that nothing you are feeling or doing is wrong. Do not beat yourself up for anything during this difficult time.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month - take the time to hug every woman you love a little tighter, remember the women who fought a courageous battle (and those who love them) and reflect on what's really important to you and make it happen so you can live life every day a little happier.
From New York, with love xox