Lunching at a significantly Long Table

I’ve rewritten this post a few times. It’s a heavy one for me and I want to get it right.

This weekend I am going to an annual event, a luncheon which is a fundraiser for Breast Cancer WA. Its something we’ve been to every year for the last 4 or so years, and it is a significant event for me for a few reasons.

About 6 years ago, I was with my then boyfriend, at ex mother in law’s house. The phone rang, and XMIL came upstairs and said it was for me. Instantly, that feeling of dread went through my veins. No one ever called me there. Something was wrong. My sister was on the phone, and she held it together for roughly 1/8th of a second, before sobbing out “AJ has breast cancer.” Those 4 words made the world stop and fade away for a few seconds. We were already going through one hell of a struggle with my beloved Grandad who was battling cancer, and now my healthy, young Aunty had been given a cancer diagnosis. AJ put up a major fight and kicked its ass, and we couldn’t be prouder, but the thought that we might have lost her was unspeakable. It makes the hair stand up on my arms. Some people aren’t as lucky as we were. Some people do lose their own AJs, and I just can’t imagine how a niece, a daughter, a mother, gets over that. Yet I see it, every week, in my job on a medical oncology ward. I watch wives sit by beds offering their unwavering support as husbands take their final breaths. It’s an honour, a privilege and a drain to do my job. I hate cancer. My Grandad lost his battle just over a year before Lovechild was born, and I wish he had met her. That SHE had met HIM. They would adore each other, I can picture them snuggled up on the armchair telling stories, Grandad smelling of the spring onions he would have just had with lunch. The luncheon is an opportunity to get glammed up with my favourite women in the entire world, and celebrate their success in beating this bitch of a disease. We get to honour our wonderful aunty who is now healthier than ever, and we get to do that with 600 other wonderful survivors, and their sisters, daughters and nieces. There’s even the occasional husband, and certainly a few wonderful looking male waiters.

The second reason the Lunch is significant to me is because this time last year, I was miserable. I was wearing a dress that was the only thing I was comfortable in, and it was pretty awful. I looked unhealthy, overweight, and miserable. I was self conscious, ashamed of myself. The photos of the event were the catalysts for my deciding to have my vertical sleeve gastrectomy, (aka VSG, sleeve, weight loss surgery – just throwing the terms out there for google to pick up :P) Up until then it was just a seed of an idea in my head, but after I saw those photos, I knew it was time.

This year, 40kg down and a billion times more confident and happy, I have a lovely dress to wear, and I can’t wait to get my dance on. I can’t wait to celebrate the wonderful woman I know who has beaten breast cancer. I can’t wait to see what overpriced auction item Mum buys. And most extremely importantly, I can’t wait to drink as many purple slushy cocktails as possible before they run out.

Have you all done a Breast Self Examination lately? Or to my single male reader (you know who you are, B-rock) have you done a Testicular Self Examination lately?


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Bec
    Apr 16, 2011 @ 16:53:30

    One of the worst days of my life was when my mum told me she had cancer. I am so grateful she made it but am very aware that it could have gone the other way. Have fun tomorrow xx


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