Anyone who knows me knows that I am not really a reader of books. In fact, I much prefer to be a "doer". I have never been able to just sit and do nothing but read, and really, it is quite difficult to try and do anything else while reading. I can multi-task at any other activity except reading. I can talk on the phone while folding twelve loads of laundry and I can whip up a 5 course meal while unloading the dishwasher and making a grocery list, but isolate me from my normal flurry of activity to sit and concentrate on a book, never. Not unless it is a riveting book, one that absolutely draws me in and won't let me go!
Well, a few days before this trip, I received just such a gem, the book, "Promise Me", by Nancy G. Brinker. It is the story of how the bond with her sister, Susan G. Komen, began the global breast cancer pink ribbon movement. Nancy Brinker is a gifted writer, accomplished at literally everything she has undertaken in life, and is fiercely devoted to protecting the memory of her beloved "Suzy". In it, she details the years and travels she had with her sister, the polar differences in their life choices and yet the ultimate respect and admiration for one another's talents, the painful and tragic breast cancer her sister developed, the agony of losing Suzy to a disease that she herself was struck with years later, and remarkably survived. The choices, the treatments, the fears, the judgements, and the realization that many women do not have options or treatments because not enough was or is being done - this is what grabbed hold of me throughout her story. It made me realize that much of the treatment I received was a direct result of the work done by the Komen foundation, and yet as I read her words I felt as though she was my friend, sitting right in sofa beside me telling me her story. She is that transparent, that real, that honest and that caring. She truly has a heart for women like none other. I cried at many points throughout the book with just sheer gratitude for all this woman has done and the fact that I can call myself a survivor today because of it!
Everything that Nancy Brinker has set out to do in the 30 years since Suzy died, was in response to the promise she made to her in her dying days to find a cure for breast cancer. And in 30 years, billions of dollars have been raised, advances made in diagnostics, surgical options and chemo therapies developed that were not available back then. All because of the Susan G.Komen Foundation, which is the single largest breast cancer fund raising organization of all time.
A sister's love.
A will that found a way.
Now the torch is passed to me and to you...it is a promise we must commit to for our daughter's, our sisters, and our friends. Check out The Army Of Women, a global force working to enlist participants both survivors and women never diagnosed, to participate in various clinical studies with the purpose of finding the CAUSES of breast cancer, which is now believed to be the only path to a 'cure'. Scroll through the studies currently offered to see if you can participate, forward to everyone you know. Research is great, but they need volunteers willing to cast themselves into the fight. I registered, won't you? Promise me?