** This post is not written by the original author of this blog, Melanoma Warrior, Chelsea. I am Erika and Chelsea has been my best friend for the past 14 years. While Chelsea is triumphantly fighting this cancer, with her permission, I will give you a different perspective on the "C" word.
If you have been following this blog, you will know that Chelsea is currently at Memorial Sloan Kettering in New York City enduring major surgery to fight this mammoth melanoma.
To be perfectly honest, I have been in a funk all day because Chelsea's surgery. She is several states away, battling cancer, and frankly, I've been worried about her. To preface this entry, the last two sentences are not meant to be a pity party for me. They simply are meant to create a framework for the following story.
After staying in the previously mentioned "funk" all day, I decided to leave work today as soon as I could. I was ready for some peace and quiet after a long day. On my way out, a co-worker, who has been following this blog, stopped me to ask how Chelsea is doing. This co-worker's husband conquered cancer within the last year, which is the kind of news that was great to be reminded of at this point in time. While talking to this co-worker about Chelsea's fight, another co-worker overheard our conversation and asked to speak with me. While speaking with co-worker #2, she told me that 2 of her closest friends are cancer survivors. During their battles, both of these people surrounded themselves with people who were positive. One cancer survivor, when asked for her plans for the next day, simply replied "I'm going to laugh tomorrow." What a great attitude to have! Anyway, my point here is that within 30 minutes, 2 people stopped me to ask about Chelsea and to remind me of the power of positive thinking.
As I drove home this afternoon, I thought about both of these conversations and realized that there must be a reason that 2 people shared 3 survivor stories with me WHILE CHELSEA IS IN SURGERY! To me, that is a sign that Chelsea is going to beat this monster.
As I wait for updates on Chelsea's surgery, here are the 2 things that I am keeping in the back of my mind:
1) God is infinitely more powerful than this cancer.
2. "Cancer is a word - not a sentence."
Now, as you read this, I beg you to say a prayer for Chelsea. Think good thoughts for her and about her. In the coming weeks, keep encouraging her. We will all be her cheerleaders and she WILL soon be able to call herself a Melanoma Survivor.