"All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother." - Abraham Lincoln
Obviously we can’t begin a blog for May without dropping some major love and appreciation for our moms, your moms and everyone's mom, including Abe's! Whether with us in body or spirit - we love you and thank you!
A mom's love is something fierce – we mean, any female's love is something fierce - but the love of a female looking out for her family? Not even cancer has an edge.
And for our May survivor Debbie Hernandez, being a mother and grandmother were key driving factors in her push back against breast cancer.
"I was scared but my faith in God was bigger," she recalled. "I decided that I was not going to let cancer rob me of a wonderful life with my kids, grandkids, and family. Plus, my family reminded me every day of how much they still needed me."
So, in other words, not today breast cancer!
And Debbie had another maternal trait catapulting her forward - instinct!
We've discussed this in a number of previous posts but no one person (doctors included) or thing (ahem, mammograms too) knows your body better than you! So if you feel something is out of sorts – despite being told you “seem fine” it is always worth investigating further and/or getting a second opinion - even when you have come to know and trust your doctor.
Take Debbie. After nearly two decades strong with the same doctor, she didn't feel her concerns were being taken seriously. Some of us may have shrugged it off, or allowed this feedback from such a trusted relationship silence our concerns – but not Debbie. She found another doctor to hear her out and it was this doctor who ultimately diagnosed her with breast cancer. And while any diagnosis shakes your life – it’s the diagnosis that can save your life. Always trust your gut!
Though undeterred, Debbie admits her journey has not been one without its share of depression but she has found peace within her favorite hobby.
"Working with nature makes me feel happy so I choose to work in my garden every year," she said. "Planting seeds in beautiful flowers does something to my soul, because like someone said, 'nature does not hurry and yet everything is accomplished.'"
Great point, Debbie!
"They call me the rock of the family, even though I have been depressed and sometimes wanted to give up due to all the pain I endure, life is still good and I would not change it for nothing in this world," she said. “It is not my time to go. It is time for me to fight cancer back.”
Well then. Safe to say we agree with your family about that rock thing! Thank you for sharing your story with us, we are proud to call you our Survivor sister!
Before we head out we'd like to wish Angelina Killane-Sims (founder and CEO of AAngelsNJ) a huge happy birthday and also take a moment to remember our dear friend Elizabeth “Lady Sha” Ruan on her special day this month. Elizabeth is gone but never forgotten!
Catch you all next time, until then keep your Eye on Strength!