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Goalielocks & Debbie actually sounds like the name of a television show, but its actually two of my favorite people for whom I’m eternally grateful. Goalielocks always had an affinity for Debbie. He loved her like a second mom. Moreover, he had a profound respect for her. He was devastated when she was diagnosed. He actually knew before us as he had figured it out from comments TK had made at school. However, he didn’t mention anything to us until after we had told him. It was hard for him to wrap his head around the fact that she had done “everything right,” but was diagnosed with stage iv cancer.
He didn’t understand how someone who didn’t smoke, drink, eat poorly and exercised regularly could get cancer. My mother-in-law was diagnosed with Stage IV triple negative breast cancer in 2011. At the time, Goalielocks was in fist grade. Undoubtedly, it was hard for us to tell the kids that their Grandma was so ill. Nevertheless, it made sense to him. I’m sure that was weird to read that, but stick with me here. Once we finished talking, Goalielocks said “it makes sense given she smokes, drinks, doesn’t eat right and doesn’t exercise.” Strangely, as a six year old child, he had a pretty good handle on major diseases and their causes. He was sad, but since the diagnosis made sense to him it wasn’t as scary.
Flash forward four years and the tough questions were coming our way. While he could make sense of his Grandma’s diagnosis, he couldn’t wrap his head around Debbie’s. Truth be told, I think many of us felt similarly. It didn’t seem fair that someone who had followed all the rules ended up with this diagnosis. Since the diagnosis didn’t makes sense based on behavioral patterns, the diagnosis was very scary.
Cancer is a scary disease. Debbie, however, showed Goalielocks and all of us what true strength was. Moreover, she showed us what it means to be brave, to persevere, to love, and to live fully. We were honored to be able to help their family while Debbie was on hospice. Consequently, my boys spent a lot of time with her those last weeks. In what was the most difficult season of her life, she continued to show us all what it means to love selflessly, to live fully and be brave. I am forever grateful for the time my kids, the hubby and I were able to spend with her. While her neither her diagnosis nor her passing make sense to us, she will forever serve as our inspiration to love selflessly, live fully and persevere.
There’s only thirteen days left to the Purple Stride Event in Broward-Palm Beach. While we’re still $4,000 away from our goal, I am hopeful we can close the gap in the coming week. To join our team or donate in Deb’s honor, please click here. Currently, there’s no panacea for Pancreatic Cancer as survival rates remain around 7-8%.
Tonight’s song “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”