I lost a friend last night. I found out this morning. Well, I didn’t “lose” her. Linda didn’t leave me outside of the Apple Store to head out to the mall bathroom and get lost.
She had The Cancer. And there was nothing pretty, peppy or Pink about it.
Linda was a part of my Wednesday morning knitting group at my local Cancer Wellness House. In her darkest, most pain filled, hopeless days, she lifted us. She brightened us. She made us want to be better human beings. She had no husband. No children. She had her loving sisters. She had the most piercing, enviable eyes, calming demeanor and positive , fun things to say. She was a wonder. A Shaking My Head How Is She So Positive Wonder.
Linda died way too young. Way too painfully. No pink ribbon helped her. No (insert whatever color of ribbon is assigned to lung and esophagus and recurrence cancers here) ribbon helped her.
No one waved pom poms for her while wearing a tutu and lapping around a high school track at 2 a.m. Even if they had, pom poms, sleep deprivation and good intentions, even if cancer color appropriate, wouldn’t have helped Linda.
And that pisses me off. And makes me horrendously sad. Because, (oh hi broken record of our message here on SOP) folks are giving their money to the wrong agencies because they aren’t getting the real picture of what Cancer is. What Cancer does. What Cancer truly looks like. “Charities” (like Komen) cancel fund raising, pom pom shaking walks when not enough people register (where is the profit in that?) yet spend money on first class airfare and six figure salaries. And focusing on the color pink. Because, I guess, boobs are money makers. Not more research and affordable drug development.
Not lungs. Or esophaguses.