When my journey with melanoma began, I was introduced to a group of people who call themselves Bad Ass Melanoma Warriors. I am proud to say I am part of this group. These people are strong, compassionate and intelligent, and they rally around each other to give (or get) support for whatever might be happening whether it's anxiety about upcoming scans, or help with treatment decisions, or hearing bad news. We are a tightly knit community, and our community heard bad news last night. One of our youngest warriors, Jillian, learned that her treatment is not working. The doctors say there is nothing else they can do. She's 23 for God's sake. 23!
I have to tell you that I do not know this family personally, but their story is etched on my heart forever. From what I have learned about Jillian through her mom's blog "Jillian's Journey with Melanoma: A Mother's Story," she is a fighter, is outgoing, funloving, loves the outdoors and her family, and is beautiful and that's just for starters.
Here is a link to her mom's blog: http://jilliansjourneywithmelanoma.blogspot.com/2012/10/the-quest.html
You know, it's bad enough having melanoma yourself, but to be the mother of a child who has it...well, I just can't fathom the pain. As parents, we always want to do all we can to take away any pain our child is in, so to watch your child, a daughter in this case, struggle with Stage IV melanoma has to be the toughest thing in the world.
So, as Jillian's mom suggested last night, I'm going to hug my kids and not worry about the things that aren't important. Life is short. Far too short. And we all need to get out there and LIVE! I hope you will too.