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I fucking hate cancer.

Don’t get all uppity on me because I swore. I’m really pissed. Dear God I’m so grateful I haven’t had cancer. I do what I can to live healthy and hopefully prevent it. But I know so many, too many who have fought and won, and fought and lost this goddamn battle. Whether it’s my parents, relatives, friends, friend’s children….ugh! STOP!

I wasn’t going to run in the Race for the Cure this year. My hips bother me lately when I run. But screw it. Now I am. I was thinking of hanging up my running shoes and just sticking to making donations. But darn it, life has a different plan. I’ve run 3 Race for the Cures. I have done the Susan G Komen 3 day as well. I’m tired of breast cancer. But I’m not too tired to fight. There’s so many who are fighting for their lives. So the least I can do is run dammit!

I was heading out for some errands while the kids were in school. The weather had been tempting me with some sunshine and I was dreaming of a pair of wedge, cork, sandals. I pictured them in my post this week (Welcome to the party…). They were on sale and I figured, with our tight budget, the least I can afford is a $40 pair of adorable spring sandals to get me in the mood for some warmer weather.

But then the call came from my friend. I hate those calls. Those texts. Those emails. They have that fucking ‘c’ word in them. And by ‘c’ word, I don’t mean ‘C U Next Tuesday’. THAT word is pretty harmless when you think of what the ‘c’ word is that I’M talking about. I’ve had one too many of those types of messages either by phone or computer that say someone has cancer.

So I went out to the store on my errands and got to thinking. I really don’t need those sandals. I want those sandals, but I don’t need them. What I DO need is a new pair of running shoes since the ones I own are 2 years old and have seen 100s of miles already. Not good for the pronating and plantar fasciitis feet of mine.

So I found -whattdya know, a $40 pair of Nikes at Nordstrom Rack. Hey, they have orange in them kinda like the sandals I wanted.

I resent those shoes. Not because ‘it was them or the sandals’ due to budget. But why I had to buy them. I will run the Race for the Cure. But I’m so pissed I need to.

These are them.

I’ve dedicated my races to Julie, Shannon, Jessica, My Aunt Gudrun, and now M. She’s very private, and I don’t know yet of our friends who actually know. I don’t even know if she reads my blog.

So I will fire up my iPod and make new playlists.

This one is always on there:

The reason for this race is the fundraising. If you feel compelled to give- click here and donate to my team- thanks! Race for the Cure Fundraising.

Dedicated to Ashley

It’s been two + years my dear friends, the Lefkows, have endured a battery of Leukemia treatments for their little girl, Ashley. I’ve blogged before about cancer since I know many who are fighting cancer, have lost the fight to cancer, or have lost a loved one to cancer. So this is for Ashley and her journey. Normally I would say, “Hey cancer- knock, knock, mother f****r”, but this is about a 6 year old girl so I will keep the swear words to potty talk only.

Hey Cancer, you’re a poopy headed, boogery fart-face that needs to go down the toilet!

This week marks the end of her treatment, the end of daily chemo pills and weekly/monthly  trips to Children’s Hospital to access her port. The end of a lot for her mom and dad and big brother. But the start of something wonderful. Life as it should be.

I remember September of 2009, the text I got from her mom, my good friend Christin- it said, “she has Leukemia”. My knees buckled and my head started to swim. I have no idea what they were going through on that day. I can’t imagine getting that call from the doctor. Immediately they began her treatments, surgeries and making Children’s Hospital in Seattle their reluctant, second home.

There were late night fevers and trips to the ER, oh, on Christmas EVE mind you. There was the ongoing and whole summer of surgery and C. difficile. If you don’t know what it is- Google it. Nasty stuff. There was the steroids. Which was like having a pot smoking teenage wrestler in your house in the middle of the night with the munchies- 2 am nachos, sliders, ramen noodles, scrambled eggs, hash browns and waffles, for a SNACK!

The good thing about something awful happening to your life is that there’s a bunch of people that will come to help you. The Lefkows used all their connections and community that was there for them and turned it into a foundation to help others. Within months after starting treatments at Children’s, they began Ashley’s Team. A non-profit that gets video games, dvd’s, iPods, and other games and toys of entertainment for patients and their families. It’s not research, it’s not ground breaking medicine, but it makes those 72 hours, 12 hours or even 4 hours, that much better for everyone involved with the treatment of a child. Can you imagine what it’s like sitting in a hospital for 8 hours while your child is waiting for test results and you have their siblings with you bored out of their minds? Me neither. And God help me that I never do.

They used their company, Bacon Salt to promote a Bacathalon fundraiser that raised thousands of dollars for Ashley’s Team! It was a crazy bacon-eating contest, tricycle riding obstacle course of madness and Makers Mark, but hey- it worked!

Ashley today with blond, luscious locks, and her new kitty, Payton.

Little girls should be able to play, to wear their hair long and pretty in braids and pigtails if they want to, instead of wearing non-itchy fleece hats on their bald little peach-fuzzed heads.  They should get to go to a playarea or a birthday party without worry of infection.  They shouldn’t  have to worry about the sore on their leg that’s gotten infected. (oh that’s a whole other story!) But there’s millions of families dealing with this very crap. And for that I am truly sorry.

The blessing of Ashley’s story is that all her treatments at Children’s worked with textbook effectiveness. They can gratefully say she is cancer free. Which is like telling Leukemia it’s a poopy-headed fart-face. See ya Mother Fucker. Oh crap- and I was SO NOT going to swear!

But for today, it’s hooray for Ashley and her family of Christin, Dave, and her super awesome brother, Dean (7) to say- We did it.

I love you guys.

********

If you want to contribute to Ashley’s Team check out their website www.ashleysteam.org

Families need financial help for uncompensated care, if you’d like to help with this you can donate to www.miraclehouseguild.org

If you’d like to check out Bacon Salt, they’re pretty cool too. www.baconsalt.com

Hey cancer, knock knock mother f***er!

Remember my friend Molly? Six weeks ago I posted when she started her radiation and chemo treatments for her brain tumor. Well today she finishes those treatments. Happy Dance times 10!!

How fitting for Thanksgiving week to mark her final treatments. She can revel in the gratefulness of knowing she kicked cancer’s ass.

I had the honor of driving her to a treatment session, bringing her dinner, rescuing a broken tooth stray cat from her doorstep and just reconnecting after 20 years. I’m sorry Molly that it took your 3rd brain tumor to get us together! (shame, shame on me)

Yesterday I posted about the sadness of the holidays when you’ve lost a loved one. Today I’m posting to be glad you have the loved ones near you to celebrate the holidays. Another lesson to be had from this, don’t leave it for something awful to happen to let people know you appreciate them.

There is always someone with more heartache, struggle and desperation than you. It’s the circle of life (cue Lion King music).

So today, be furiously happy, the good always outweighs the bad. Always.