Our next Remember & Celebrate story comes from Brittany Singleton, Business Analyst for the Predict solution in the Birmingham, Alabama.
I remember it like it was yesterday, I was in 5th grade and it was a Friday afternoon. Both of my parents worked so my dad picked me up from my after school babysitter. All of my friends were going to a last minute sleepover and I gave my dad a hard time about not being able to go. After asking, begging and doing some annoying whining, he finally told me the news. He said, “We want to all be together tonight, your mom found out she has cancer.” I will never be able to describe how hearing that felt.
My mom had been diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer. Even though the tumors were microscopic, the cancer had spread to her lymph nodes and so she had undergo both chemo and radiation.
I remember getting home from church one afternoon after the chemo started and my mom standing in the yard running her fingers through her hair. My mom had the most beautiful amber brown hair that caught every inch of sunlight that it would almost glisten. I remember watching it fall out and be swept away by the wind. She was discussing with our neighbor about going to get it shaved soon. I do not know why, I attribute it to age, but that is one of my saddest memory from her cancer journey, as it seemed she was losing a part of herself.
My mom would barely let us see her without her wig or a hat. During Christmas time one of the local churches decided to stop by to sing Christmas carols, as they did to everyone sick in the community. They unfortunately chose the one night my mom decided not to wear a hat, her wig or makeup. I can remember her frantically running around the house trying to get her hat and make sure she had on her makeup. This is probably one of my fondest memories from the whole experience, as mom still wanted to present her best.
My mom fought her breast cancer with bravery and poise and has thankfully been cancer free for about 13 years now. She has been able to use her experience to help mentor other women going through cancer. My mother, Lisa Singleton, is an incredibly strong woman, we are now an incredibly strong family and the experience taught me to not take people or moments for granted.
Thank you, Brittany, for sharing your story!