“It will take a miracle for you to survive”. Those words are seared into my brain. Those were the words spoken to us from the surgeon who was about to cut away half of Jillian’s liver. From a Doctor. From someone you are trusting and looking to for answers. Those words that were delivered in such a harsh, insensitive manner.
I will never forget watching the color drain from Jillian’s face as she sat on the examination table. I will always remember looking at my kids from across the room seeing their tears fall softly from their faces. My world stopped, it was if all the oxygen was sucked from that room. The room was silent except for the occasional sniffle.
And I then I remember feeling this fierce protectiveness bubble up inside me.. And the anger. How dare you. It was those very words that motivated me to prove him wrong, and to begin to navigate my way into the belly of melanoma. It is not a pretty place.
I’ve learned much these last two years. I’ve seen firsthand the resilience, determination, and joy, coming from a young 21 year old woman who has been handed a cancer card. I’ve seen what love can do. I’ve seen how extended family members and friends rally around us. I’ve been blessed to have met so many new, wonderful people along this road as we meander along with melanoma as our partner.
I’ve also seen a darker side, and have taken some hard hits because of it. But my faith remains strong through it all, and I KNOW without a doubt that we will see the other side of this with love, compassion and a peace that surpasses all the darkness that threatens to suck us in.
I will continue to fight for my daughter and for all of those Faces that are currently battling this war against melanoma. And in doing so, spreading awareness where ever I go. That is my quest, my focus. My mission. Nothing will deter me, or my family from achieving this goal.
Fall Seven Times, Stand up Eight.