starting in early this year

For many of us who have dealt with breast cancer, October is a month of pure torment. We steel ourselves to deal with an onslaught of light pink (side note: Why is this the only cancer/condition with a pastel color? We are not weaklings or children who must be carried!) and pressure to “contribute” to ending this scourge. Believe me, I have contributed. I signed over all the tissue taken from me (otherwise known as my breasts and some lymph nodes) for testing. The results of only using surgery with no follow-up Tamoxifen were also shown when I could not tolerate the drug without losing my sanity.

I do not want to be rude, but I have the right to deal with this in my own way. That way is to avoid it as much as possible. I do NOT want to buy or wear things in that detested color. I am NOT being selfish when I say “No, thank you”. I am trying, as best I can, to maintain my composure and dignity. Do people think I have forgotten what happened? To them, I say, “I remember it every morning when I look in the mirror. It comes back to me when I come across evidence of an event that occurred which I do not remember.”. I will never forget and I will never be the same. But, I will not let this become me. I will not center my life around this single event.

So, what brought on this semi-rant? This morning, when the alarm went off, there was a program interviewing a rather perky woman about her experience. There is much pressure on “survivors/victims” to play nice and be permanently cheerful when discussing this topic.

I will NOT play nice. This is not a nice topic. This is a war. I took heavy casualties in the battle. I will not forget, I will not forgive, I will not surrender. Please, can we keep the organized reminders confined to October?? Remember, you are wearing our pain.–TSG

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