Last weekend, I was privileged to attend the National Race to End Women’s Cancer in Washington, DC. I was more than happy to participate in this annual research fundraiser for the ongoing battle against a despicable, relentless foe many, many of my friends – and yours – are currently facing.
On this day, I was walking the mile (no, not Stephen King’s Green Mile, although I suspect many in the cancer race felt that they were, indeed, on the cusp of a death sentence) in honor of my dear friend and three-year cancer battler, Poksun Choi, mother of my daughter-in-love, Rebecca. Poksun was given a year to live but three years later, by the grace of Papa God, she’s still with us.
I say cancer battler instead of survivor – although Poksun is indeed a grateful survivor – because her clinical trial chemo is ongoing with no end in sight; if she stops, she dies.
Her test numbers have slightly improved and the tumors’ growth seem to have plateaued (all reasons to celebrate in themselves). But the price she pays is chronic fatigue, nausea, and becoming more intimate with her toilet than she ever dreamed possible.
Even so, today Poksun celebrates life. She joins 10,000 other battlers, survivors, and those who showed up in honor of a loved one who courageously fought but lost the battle, in laughing, loving, throwing their hands joyously into the air, and dancing with wild abandon at the incredible wonder of living…this day, at this moment. Regardless of what tomorrow may bring.
I am awed by the pure determination of these women. I realize that each of them with race numbers below 100 pinned to their chests are battlers. In fact, they’re battling this very moment, somewhere deep inside, probably painfully, where the rest of us can’t see.
But still, they choose to seize this day. Carpe diem. And dance like no one’s watching. Or maybe like everyone’s watching. Because we all need to share their spark. Their joy. Their hope.
I feel Papa God’s pleasure in their hope. For He created life and loves us to cherish what He cherishes. And that means each and every precious woman out here.
Can’t help myself; I start dancing too. Won’t you join us in your own celebration of life?