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March 16, 2016
BENEFITING: BREAST CANCER COALITION OF ROCHESTER INC
EVENT DATE: May 08, 2016
Many of you who visit this page will already know our story, but in case you don't...
In 1995, when I was in fourth grade, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. My brother and sister were just 4 and 2 years old! She underwent chemotherapy, and lost all of her hair. My sister thought she looked like a monster. She also had a mastectomy and reconstructive surgery. Thankfully, after some time on hormone treatments, she was deemed "cancer free" by doctors, eventually was taken off her medication, and was considered "healthy" for 10 years. After 10 years of being cancer free, there's no chance of it coming back, right? At least that's what the doctors told us... But they were very, very wrong.
All those years the doctors found nothing, the cancer was slowly growing and spreading throughout her body. My sophomore year of college, she was diagnosed with a severe case of pneumonia and went under the knife in order to drain the fluids from her lungs. And that’s when the doctors finally found something seriously wrong. Even though no cancer was ever found in her routine "cancer survivor" blood work, there was a thin layer of the deadly cells coating her lungs, heart, diaphragm and entire chest cavity.
For about 8 years, she lived with Stage 4, terminal breast cancer, and it had spread to almost every place imaginable in her body. Her bones, muscles, spine, liver, and ribs had all been compromised. She had undergone countless chemotherapy and radiation treatments and suffered everyday from her ineffective immune system and the loss of use of half of one lung.
But still, she kept holding on. Well beyond any time line any doctor had ever given to her to live. She still worked hard every day to take care of herself and our family. She was absolutely the strongest and bravest woman you would ever meet.
Sadly however, on May 18, 2012, Teresa Marie Miller lost her almost 20 year battle with breast cancer. And while she is deeply missed, we are grateful for the time we were able to spend with her. She was able to watch us all grow up, something she never thought she would be able to do when they told her her diagnosis back in 1995. She watched Mariah graduate high school, Kevin become a man, Melissa marry the love of her life.
And these things would not have been possible if it weren’t for donations and events like these to fund the cancer research, prevention, and treatments that kept her with us for so long.
Please consider joining our team, Mom’s Memory, to walk in memory of our mom, Teresa Miller. We would love to have as many friends and family as possible by our side as we celebrate her life and walk together. She participated in a similar event with us EVERY year she was physically able from the time she was diagnosed, and we are confident she will be with us this year in spirit and in our hearts.
I can't think of a better way to spend my Mother's Day every year; walking to honor her memory and raise money to help a great local organization that supports others who are fighting this terrible disease.
If you can’t attend, please consider making a donation, no matter how big or how small, to help other families like ours get through this hard time just a little bit easier in the future.