I remember a long ago episode of “Law and Order” when Anita van Buren (played by S. Epatha Merkerson) said of breast cancer, “There are two kinds of women, those who have survived and those who have not been diagnosed yet.” Funny, I can’t remember anything about that episode, but I remember that line of dialogue so distinctly, even after all these years. Every woman over the age of 40 knows the anxiety that accompanies the annual mammogram — not because we are adverse to having our boobs crushed between two freezing pieces of plastic, we are adverse to what may indeed prove to be our own battle call, our own quest to vanquish this insidious demon that grows in our breasts and if not defeated, takes our lives.
I’ve seen my fair share of cancer. Women that I know well and hold dear have battled this disease with warrior fierceness; most survived, a few succumbed. This is an emotional topic for me, so I’m not going to serve some profound words of wisdom about inner strength. Instead I’m going to provide a link to Deborah Doucette’s “Huffington Post” article, with her permission, after which I will light a candle in remembrance of those who lost the battle with the big C, and sing with joy for those who survived.