Okay, everyone — Pink ribbons at the ready. We’re only one day away from the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, starting October 1. One day from remembering our mothers, sisters, friends, ourselves. Whether we walk, run, say our prayers, light a candle, wear a ribbon or simply wait for better times, we shall one day find an end to this terrifying disease. Not we will. Not we want to. But … We Shall.
Many of you know I’m a brain tumor survivor. Fifteen years now and still going strong. What most may not know is that previous to the brain thingy, I was also a double mastectomy patient. There! I’ve said it. The original girls had some problems and needed to be retired. I’m now on my second set of aftermarket parts. It’s hard to think of it now, but … whew! … after all these years I seem to be — In. The. Pink.
Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for many of my Sisters. Yes, we’re sisters, whether we know one another or not. There’s not a breast that’s been poked into, squished down, aspirated, removed or otherwise dismantled without recognizing our legion of breast cancer patients and survivors. We are many. And we’re strong.
I miss my first breasts. They were, perhaps, on the smaller side, but they were mine. They budded and flourished. They enunciated my womanhood and, later, nourished my babies. They were generous with feeling and sometimes bawdy with their behavior. A woman’s breasts are like that. When they were removed, it seemed my ability to function as a full woman was also depleted. Fortunately, I’ve since gotten over that. I’ve also gotten over the plastic surgeon who enlarged me toward today’s standard.
I rarely offer political comment on this website. I have other venues where I express these thoughts. Nevertheless, I’m watching with a hopeful heart that the millions of our uninsured Americans might be rewarded for their long and often fateful wait for better and more generous news than, “We’re sorry”. I’m holding my breath that our leaders will pay attention to the majority of their constituents who want … who need … their leaders to listen to the people. The difficult part for all this hoping and waiting and watching is that somewhere back in time, large corporations were deemed to be “persons”. That’s when real, living, breathing, people were shoved to the side. Now we have corporation people and breathing people.
Currently, the corporation people rule. Corporations have nearly unlimited amounts of money and breathing people pretty much don’t.
So, a woman with breast cancer is left in a pickle if she doesn’t have insurance, or if she once had acne she forgot about and her big insurance company has a teensy-weensy clause that indicates they can now say, “Sorry,” or if she is underinsured, or if … or if … or if.
It could be so simple. We could just take care of one another like we’re supposed to. We could be our sisters’ help in her time of desperation. We could end our disagreements with one another. We could.
We could provide this nation with health care for all.
We could easily do that.
I’ll stop now so your ears will stop bleeding from listening to my rant (especially, if you happen to like those corporation people a whole lot). But I’ll never stop caring. I’ll never stop wearing my pink ribbon for all the brave women who live with breast cancer. I’ll never stop. I’ll never stop.
Would you please never stop caring too?