Tears were shed because I had just learned of an old friend passing due to cancer. She was only 34 years old with three young children. One day she’s in the hospital having survey and chemotherapy. A few short months later she had passed away. So young and to die from colon cancer this just doesn’t seem real. Doing this volunteer work each year many of us are faced with our own cancer challenges. Several ACS CAN volunteers were being remembered for their hard work and dedication. The room filled with sadness because they were no longer with us. There are many moments of heart aches that comes along with dealing with cancer. I continue to push myself in memory of all those we have lost.
My nerves get to me right before meeting with the Senators and Representatives from my district, but the training that we receive I feel much more confident to face them. The Lights of Hope ceremony is just breath taking. Spiritually you sense the spirits of those who lost their battle with cancer present. We all remain hopeful that one day soon this disease will no longer exist. The ACS CAN Opener is the fun part, because we know that we can’t get though this 3-day event without reflecting on the good times that we’ve had. Gillian Anderson once said, “Be of service. Whether you make yourself available to a friend or co-worker, or you make time every month to do volunteer work, there is nothing that harvests more of a feeling of empowerment than being of service to someone in need.”
In memory of Sherri, Charley, and Shannon, because of them and their fight I will do every step and action to be a great volunteer.
Being a mother is one of the most rewarding and most difficult jobs there is. So imagine being a mom who is also battling cancer. When I was 29 and diagnosed with Stage III breast cancer, my first thoughts were how am I going to get through this and reassure my kids I would get better? While on active duty in the US Navy, I signed up to fight for my country, but never did I think I would be fighting for my own life.
This Mother’s Day, as we thanked our moms for all they do, I’d like to make life a little easier for the moms and others dealing with cancer. Fortunately, Congressman Kevin Brady can help by co-sponsoring federal legislation to increase access to palliative care.
Palliative care is specialized medical care that applies a team-based approach to the coordination of care and the treatment of a patient’s pain and other symptoms. The goal of palliative care is to improve the quality of life for both the patient and their family.
This year in Texas, 115,730 will hear the words “you have cancer” for the first time. Some of them will be moms, and others will be their loved ones. I strongly urge Congressman Brady to support legislation to help bring quality of life and care together for the millions of families facing cancer.
Volunteer, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network
I need your help in doing something really big by August 2014. My goal is have to 15 luminaries sold and decorated in honor of your loved ones or your friends loved ones. Loved ones who have been diagnosed with cancer or lost their lives due to cancer.
Every year at the Relay races and Lobby Day in Washington DC these decorated luminaries with pictures and favorite moments decorated by you are put on display. Last year I was able to witness in Washington DC the long line of people who have been affected by cancer. It was emotional and you could definitely feel their spirits with us. No one ever wants to be told you have cancer or see someone whom you love be taken away by it. The money raised goes toward cancer research with the American Cancer Society.
I’ve been a volunteer with the American Cancer Society for a year now and I love doing what I do sharing my story and helping in the fight against cancer.
When you go online to donate make sure you mention my name “Latina Starling” as the person who asked you to purchase a lights of hope. Please share this post with your co-workers, family, and friends, thank you for reading.