Seven years have now passed since my mother died from metastatic breast cancer. I choose to mark time here on the blog each March not because I am looking for sympathy, but because I want to continue talking about the lives taken by breast cancer, not just my mother’s life, but all of them. I mark time to honor not only my mother, but all women and men who have died from this wretched disease. And sadly, there are many. Too many.
Seven years have now passed since my mother’s death. Seven years. That’s 2,555 days.
My dad has always been a man of few words, but when he speaks, people pay attention because what he has to say is always worth listening to. Sometimes I think he has grown quieter still since my mother’s death. But that would make sense I guess. He’s now been alone, without his wife, for seven years. 2,555 days. When you’re alone, you become quieter in a lot of ways.
Again, I mark time not looking for sympathy, but because I want to stress once again that each year some 40,000 women and men die from metastatic breast cancer in the US alone.
This means in seven years 280,000 more have died.
The numbers are astounding to me.
Besides my dad, how many other spouses or partners have been impacted? How many other families like mine have felt this pain? A lot. Too many.
So let’s stop pretending we’ve made dramatic progress. We haven’t. We’ve made progress yes, but dramatic; I don’t think so.
It’s so easy to forget that behind every statistic was a real person who led a very real life, with a real family and real friends. The numbers are not just numbers. The numbers represent people. Loved ones. Gone. Forever.
When someone you love dies from metastatic breast cancer, it changes you.
You carry on of course, but you do not forget.
And you continue to mark time.
Thank you for helping me do that. Again.
We will not forget.
Visit my mets page for a list of organizations that support mets research and to learn more about what you can do to help others better understand metastatic breast cancer.
Breast cancer awareness without mets awareness, isn’t awareness at all.
Who do you mark time for?
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