Sunday, August 12, 2007

Why I Wore Lipstick for Think Pink Dana

My first completed book for this challenge is: Why I Wore Lipstick to my Mastectomy by Geralyn Lucas, from Think Pink Dana's original list. She actually chose another book after this was a choice, but this is the one I found first. I'll try to catch the other one, The Five Gifts of Illness, another time.

I've known Dana online for several years now, and for the longest time all I really knew about her was that she was younger and cuter than I am, that she mothered little girls as do I, that she was a minister's wife as I was---and that she was a breast cancer survivor. Her email signature line has always said something like, "Young women can and do get breast cancer...and survive! Surviving and thriving since 1996." I've read her blog with her cancer story, and it is nothing short of amazing. Through the years I've learned more about her: her strength, her hunger for God's word, her desire to serve God, her compassion, her intolerance for silliness and unnecessary drama. She challenges me often to reexamine what I think and believe about things. I am proud to call her my friend.

Lucas's book was, in many ways, an echo of Dana for me. I am glad I read this book, because I feel it gives good insight into what it is like for a young woman in today's society facing the loss of something profoundly and foundationally female: a breast. I have always had respect for Dana, and this book only served to remind me of what she has gone through.

Cancer, that evil in a cell, manifests in many forms. It claims lives like my friend Nattie's; it claims breasts and portions of breasts; it crops up in the most unexpected places. But it can never conquer the human spirit, and it will never, EVER, conquer God.

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