Tuesday, August 09, 2011
My friend Brenda has cancer. She has been handed her life back to her with a horrific diagnosis, several treatment plans and scripts for her pain management. Within a matter of weeks her life has been turned on its axis by the awful realization of just how finite her life really is.
She had previously quit a long smoking habit and started eating healthy for the last half of her life. I laughed when I heard she had joined a fitness club since I swear if there was a strong enough wind she would have blow off to Kansas. Her tiny frame would have been dwarfed by the exercise equipment alone not to mention her genetic predisposition to klutziness would have guaranteed bruising in places she never knew existed. Getting fit was her goal and as the stubborn old fool I know her to be, she would have succeeded if this had not stopped her in her tracks.
She is the Louise to my Thelma. We have gone through many things and I just don't know what to do for her right now. I am shattered by her pain and my heart aches for her fear. I have my faith and I hope I can cloak her with me in it's embrace if she will let me. I will talk and listen and do whatever I can, but I cannot begin to imagine how she feels right now.
But Brenda, the crazy, tiny, fireball that she is, had the courage to read some material that was provided to her in her new cancer care package and she zeroed in on dog training in relation to cancer. She found that there is an organization that trains dogs to detect the smell of cancer for early diagnosis and treatment. She called them.
She found out that in order to train the dogs, they needed tissue samples from a person with ongoing cancer before the start of treatment. Since she starts her treatments next week she took that small window of opportunity and invited them to take what they needed. They were on their way over yesterday when I talked to her. I held it together until I got off the phone then thanked God for Brenda.
My courageous friend wanted to contribute somehow to help train these dogs for cancer detection in hopes that she can save others from the terrible ravages of this disease. She is taking a stand and making lemon pie with her lemons.
There are no words to describe how I feel with her take charge attitude. When she should be resting and gaining her strength for the Hellacious fight ahead, she chose to do something good while she had the chance.
You often hear the words courage and cancer in the same sentence. I understand now... I see Brenda and I see courage.