It really got me this year
Felt like a gut punch
Here we go--
Breast Cancer
Pink News
Pink Ads
Pink Washing

Companies making PINK money
Using OUR Ribbons
but not funding
OUR research
for a CURE

WE are expected
to fund our own cure
with runs and rallies
while Pharma
spends our money
on finding more treatments

Because Treatment
Equals profit

Clinical Trials
practically impossible
to gain access
Especially if you have
Real Breast Cancer
The kind that sticks around
Until it kills you.

Clinical Trial Criteria:
Carried over from
one FDA approved trial
to another

Never a reflection
of the actual people
living with
the actual cancer

Clinical trials
Should be called
Clinical Trials and Tribulations

Hoop-jumps through fire
Schedules that work for them, not you
Randomized and double-blind
No one can see straight.

How I miss the Mundane World
And my life before those three shitty words:
You Have Cancer

1996 - Before Cancer
I was just a mom of two little kids; a beautiful son and daughter and I had a kind and decent husband. And a fabulous career. I was not carefree; I was stressed trying to juggle and manage it all. Kids, work, husband, social life, pre-school, private school, synagogue life, volunteering, PTA, play dates, baby sitters, plan some travel, plan some dates, buy everyone’s clothes, buy birthday gifts, stay in touch with family, send out holiday cards, cook dinner and manage the house. Collaborate with my then-spouse on some design projects and don’t forget to engage my own clients. SUPERGIRL! Federal Express allowed my career to flourish. It was so very long ago, right after fax machines were invented.

By accident, I chose the hardest road; work part-time and mom full-time. My design career was the busiest it had ever been. And if I could bill it, I would do it. My end game was to remain a self-employed design and marketing consultant. I loved my work and I loved my family. I ate healthy, I exercised, I got fresh air.

At age 38, the last thing I expected was Breast Cancer.

85% of cancers have no family history. I have no family history

But I did have an aggressive little fucking breast cancer drop into my life like a nuclear bomb.

The ripple effect
Went straight through me
Hit my family
Hit my friends
The mushroom cloud still darkens my days

My life would’ve been so much easier
if I’d only known that I would survive for 24 years!

But that’s not how cancer works.

You get three months at a time
Scan to Scan
Check up to Check up
I’ve learned to live in
"This is the Day I Am Given"

Often scared when making plans
Always wondering
Will I be here to see milestones?

And here we go-
Pinktober once again.

Raising our own funds,
Moving the needle through
Unpaid Advocacy Work

Hash-tagging each other to death
Watching our friends die
And wondering if we’ll be next

A vaccine nearly ready for COVID
But for Breast Cancer?
Still NO CURE.

©Flori words & art
October 6, 2020