Greetings family and friends. I chose the title, not to mislead, but to inform. On this day, 25 years ago my mother passed away from the same disease that decided it thought it had a chance against me. Stupid cancer.
So as I sit here with my bald head, I do so humbly and hopeful. I know there are more tools at my disposable than my mother had at that time: I caught mine early, technology has improved and have the added benefits that the Affordable Care Act gave me such as the ability to get insurance after my open heart surgery. She was deemed high risk and uninsurable until they finally allowed her on medicaid. By then it was too late. With that being said, I am not attempting to push politics on anyone, however that is a fact.
I learned a lot of hard lessons in 25 years. I compiled a list of valuable lessons:
- I learned that a 17 year old is not capable of coping with such a loss and consequently made a series of poor choices that seemed to snowball the older I got.
- I learned I could fight my way through those poor choices if I desired to do so and chose to no longer play the victim.
- I learned that bad choices are more easily made than good ones.
- I learned what a true friend is and their value.
- I learned what love is, by looking through my eyes at my children.
- I learned, just as my mother always told me, that if I work hard enough I can achieve anything.
- I learned that sometimes bad things happen to good people.
- I learned that those who are willing to fight for others for a cause they believe in are the strongest people alive.
- I learned to believe that there is beauty in everyone and everything. Sometimes we must dig deeper to see it.
- Most importantly, I learned that life is full of ups and downs and to appreciate the bad times as much as the good. They offer insight and perspective.
My point is this: through struggle comes knowledge, knowledge is power, and I have power due to my challenges and not in spite of them.
I know a lot of people are pulling for me. I want those people to know that they bet on a winner. I won’t let you down. I will win this fight.
It’s an emotional day for me. I lost one of the greatest people I have ever known, on this day in 1992. So in honor of my mother’s angel day I give her this gift: I will win this fight.