I just wanted to share here a story I wrote a while ago for the Making Memories blog. It sums up what this day is for us. I know a lot of you have your own reasons for coming to CFTC. Some are doing so in memory of a loved one lost to this terrible disease. Some have fought their own battle and won. Some simply want to support the cause. Some just want a day away to scrap and get some goodies. All of these reasons are great ones because in the end, no matter why you came, your presence helps bring awareness and funds to a very worthwhile cause.
For us, your CFTC team, this day was borne out of grief and the need to do something. I think it is still that but also so much more. While we still strive to honour our Nan, it has also become a day of fun and friends and I think that is something our Nan would be much more comfortable with. I don't think she would have wanted a fuss over her. That being said though, we need people to help us remember the real reason we started this day and the AMAZING, INCREDIBLE woman at the heart of it all.
You are absolutely right when you say breast cancer affects many of us. Too many. I have been blessed to not have had to personally fight the disease but I have been touched by it. My Nan - one of the very best people I have ever known - was diagnosed with this terrible disease. She fought bravely and beat it! She was a remarkable woman. However, the cancer wasn't done with her yet. It had spread and it wasn't long before it was too much for her to overcome. Thankfully, her battle was brief. Now, I know that may sound weird but it would make sense if you knew my Nan. She was a woman who was so incredibly full of life. She gave so much of herself through her work at the Distress Centre and Assaulted Woman's Helpline but that was just a small fraction of who she was. To us, her family, she was Nanny! She was someone who was always there with a hug when you needed it. Someone who we were never to old to crawl into her lap usually while watching some cartoons on tv. Someone who was always there with a comforting word when you most needed it. Someone who just understood without you having to say too much. Someone who had the greatest belly laugh of all time and so loved to laugh. Someone who loved us - each of us - unconditionally. Someone who I miss each and every day! Losing her left a hole in my world that has yet to be filled. I don't think it ever will be. Life goes on and time passes but that wound never truly heals. I think about my daughter who will never know Nan's love or get wrapped up in one of her hugs and my heart hurts. I am truly a better person because of my Nan. She inspired me in so many ways that I think I took for granted. I wish I had taken the time to say the words to her so she knew how much she did for me and meant to me. I take comfort in the fact that she is with me always and knows now.
Losing my Nan was the hardest thing I have to had to deal with in my life. But through dealing with it, I was spurred into action. Although Nan's fight was not lost to breast cancer specifically I still think of it as the enemy that took her from me. And because of that I strive to do my part to raise money and awareness for this very worthy cause and maybe others will be spared the loss my family feels. Each year, my family participates in the CIBC Run for the Cure to benefit the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. We put a team together and go out there and do our part as "Nan's Boobsters". It is a day of family and fun and honouring the woman we all miss so much. We also host a fundraising crop each June as a means to fundraise for our team. Crop for the Cure has had three successful years now and we are working on our fourth (June 5th, 2010). As long as I am able I will continue to do my part in memory of my Nan. I do it for her. I do it for my daughter. I do it for me. I do it for everyone who has been touched by breast cancer.
Note: This was written in 2009 so we are now actually working on our 5th year!!
Thank you for reading and thank you for your support!! Together we can all make a difference in the fight against breast cancer!!