Thursday, April 12, 2012

Relay for Life and What it Means to Fight like a Girl

Tomorrow is Relay for Life.  For those of you who don’t know, Relay for Life is a community fundraising event for the American Cancer Society.  Visit our local site hereI have participated in Relay since 2001.  I’ve been on teams, been a team captain, and worked on the Relay Committee.  I’ve been very active in Relay for the last 10 years.  This is actually my first year to not be that involved.  I can’t put my finger on it, but something was missing this year.  Maybe I missed my old team (Team Tejano).  Maybe I am burnt out.  Maybe I’m a little bit sad this year.  My Dad died in September of 2001 from cancer.  This last September marked 10 years since we lost him to this terrible disease.  But, never fear, I found a team at the last minute and I will be at Relay, walking, raising money and renewing my spirit.  Thank you Team Dylan.  Visit my personal page hereI truly believe that we have made progress in the fight against cancer.  I believe that a cure will be found in my lifetime.  I believe that more and more people are being educated about prevention.  I know that I have personally made some changes as a direct result of my Dad’s death and my involvement in Relay for Life.  If you read this blog, then you know I’m a work in progress.  A lot of what has motivated me in the past is my desire to change my lifestyle in such a way as to prevent cancer from striking me.  My Dad and all of his brothers and sisters, (except one) have died as a direct result of cancer.  I didn’t want that to be my fate or the fate of my children.  I believe that there are things we can do to help our odds.  We can eat right, we can exercise, we can choose not to smoke or use tobacco products, and we can choose to limit our alcohol consumption.  Those are the things that I choose to do that I believe are going to make a difference.  I miss my Dad every day.  But I have some pretty terrific cancer survivors in my life that make me believe in hope and progress and a cure.  Three pretty amazing women who are living and loving and surviving cancer.  They literally looked it in the eye and kicked it in the butt.  It was hard, they were so brave and they make me so proud to know them.  To Merlinda Ibarra (my amazing sister-in-law), to Lovella Desormeaux (my dear friend), and to Cecelia Medrano (my beautiful niece) – I love you and I respect you and I honor you.  You showed me what it really means to “Fight Like a Girl”. 

1 comment:

  1. We've also had a lot of people in my family die from cancer, and about fifteen years ago my mother was diagnosed with stage three ovarian cancer, which usually has a high degree of fatality. They removed a basketball-sized tumor, and now she has been in remission for over ten years. Since then my entire family has participated in Relay for Life, with the hope that continued research will lead to more success stories like my mom's.