I was asked by Mercedes to write a blog about last year’s Gala for Breast Cancer Warriors. I normally sit in my private space and time and write or type how I’m feeling. It’s therapeutic for to me to release through writing. Well, usually I can be grammatically incorrect, misspell things it doesn’t need to make sense to anyone but me, yet when I’m asked to write for someone it almost becomes a heaviness. Well this time it wasn’t heavy……why? Well first, to know Mercedes, she is awesome in herself so you can’t say no to awesomeness!! Right!! Then I thought about what she was asking me write; my experience at the Gala, an event that allowed me to feel like a sun kissed swan when I had just spent the last “umpteen” months looking like a feeling like an ugly duckling. No, I am not my hair, but the bible says a woman’s hair is her glory and my curly glory one day was falling out of my head in clumps at a time.
I put on a ball gown that my Auntie sent me 2 years prior, because she always lets me know you never know when you will need what God has told me to give you. The gown was brown like me and fit to perfection. I put a faux flower in my new hair that had grown back and my beautiful mother accompanied me to this Gala. She had earlier that year in April lost her husband to the ugly “C” word. My mom put on her suit and she is naturally fly so she didn’t need to do much more ….and we walked into the Buffalo Convention Center.
WOW is what crossed my mind as soon as I walked in the building. To my left was a beautiful HOT PINK Mustang!!! Amazing, is all I could think! This is what I see when walked in the front door and it’s going to get better than this (side bar: I love cars). To the left were vendors and straight ahead was the room where you could forget about feeling like you were different. The room where there was a community of women that have walked this walk and a room full of supporters that held us up in prayer and in deed as we fought to be labeled warriors. I entered the room where the Gala was taking place. My WOW’S became external as I looked around the room For Our Daughter’s logo had been crafted out of balloons and beautiful baskets for days!!!!!!!! Things I can’t even recall were in the baskets, a silent auction, the cake, the glamour!!! The ballroom had transformed into a warm, glamorous event. We sat at our table, some were family, others were strangers that had been affected somehow and someway by cancer.
The performance of the song Superwoman made me smile as the spoken word artist flowed and Mercedes sang the chorus, I felt like I had an S on my chest because when you are a warrior, a woman, a mom, sister, auntie, and a friend, you are a superwoman. The most touching part of the night is when the keynote speaker got up and spoke. She began to speak about her (my) journey on a stage in front of all of these people. The tears ran and I began to sob uncontrollable, not because I was sad but because someone knew my pain, my struggle, my memory loss, my speech was no longer the same. I wasn’t the only one who struggled to translate what was in my mind. I stumble and sometimes stutter over the words. I was in a community of women who silently sat and knew what she was speaking about, not just to empathize but knew and experienced the struggle. The night was not over for every survivor a bracelet was hand crafted for every one of us warriors, to show us we were special and we are loved. The baskets were handed out and the silent auction was completed. The Warriors were gathered together to take pictures all dressed up and we had somewhere to go!!!!! The night was full yet I will never ever forget the little girl who was an honor student with the sash across her body, who stood like a little lady and she spoke to me about her mother who she cooked for and helped, because her mother was a recently diagnosed warrior. She was brave, she was smart and she was beautiful inside and out.
Mom and I exited the event full from the experience and in anticipation for the next gala. When I took off my dress I may have had the scar from the lumpectomy, but when I looked closely I saw the “S” on my chest. I was reminded through this Gala I am a Superwoman!!!!