Our local paper, the Hampshire Gazette, did a feature article on Bender’s Mender this week– a two page spread with a slew of pictures! My daughter, Sophie, appears in one of the pictures which was great fun, to watch her excitement about being in the paper. And I don’t deny it, it’s been pretty exciting for me, as well, especially as I get to receive people’s responses. Today, as my Wednesday morning running group passed a stranger on the path, she shouted, “I saw you all in the paper yesterday! Good luck this weekend!” And later, I went for a check-up with my radiation oncologist, and everyone in the office–receptionists, nurses, doctor–greeted me with joy. “That’s our girl!” they said. “We put the paper in the break room, we’re all so proud of you.” More gratitude for me. 🙂
As for the article itself, I’m grateful to writer James Heflin for putting together a piece I feel so good about. (One never knows!) I am particularly grateful for two places where he quoted me:
Bender is clear on one thing: She doesn’t want hers to be “another pretty breast cancer story that says, ‘Fight hard enough, work hard enough, and you can beat it.’
“Fighting,” she says, isn’t what got her through. “I’m one of the lucky ones–not because of hard work, but luck. I want to acknowledge that. Part of why I’m running is for the women who can’t.”
This is SO IMPORTANT to me: that we celebrate the “success” stories like mine without ignoring the all too many stories of women who fight just as hard as I do–are just as committed to survival as I am–but simply haven’t been as lucky as I have been (so far, fingers crossed).
Another especially significant quote, since it pretty much sums up how I’ve approached breast cancer: “Many people just want to get through treatment and go back to their old life. I wanted to use it as an opportunity to change and grow.”
To read the full piece, visit http://www.gazettenet.com/Bender-s-Mender-1806879