Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. A time to celebrate survivors, remember those who lost the battle against it, and find it in our hearts to donate (however we see fit) to fight this nasty enemy. It is also a time to increase awareness for this disease.

Today I want to talk about a wonderful lady that lost the battle against cancer late 2014. My circle of friends, relatives, and family friends is very small, and she is part of the close family friends circle. My dad went to school with her husband. I remember when my dad gave me the news of her diagnosis. I was shocked, overwhelmed, and saddened. I researched again about symptoms, causes, and looked back at what the doctor said to watch for… I made sure to talk to the doctor about it again at my next annual visit – it is a scary thought and I pray that the researchers find a cure or better preventive measures for the disease.

But I am writing this post so that I can look back and celebrate her life, her joyous ways, her smiles and kind ways of being herself! I didn’t know her very well because I would only tag along when my parents would go over their house, but she left a great imprint in my heart and there are a few memories that I will always cherish when I think of her.

When I first came to visit Canada, back in 1998, both my dad and step-mom worked during the day and I would find different activities to keep me busy throughout the day. This one day, before lunch time, dad mentioned that a lady will come by and I will go with her to her house for a few hours. She came just as he had said, introduced herself, and off we went. In the car, we talked about my trip, impressions, and thoughts about “this place”, and she shared her experience of coming here and the loops and hoops she had to go through to make it all happen!

When we arrived at her house she asked me if I am hungry, and before I got the chance to answer, she said: “sit at the table, I have a really good soup for you” (soup for lunch is a staple in any Romanian family) And she was right – it was truly delicious! She also offered me something with the soup that I found a little odd at the time … feta cheese. She said that’s how her husband likes to eat the soup and I could try it if I wanted it to… let me tell you that every time I cook soup with meatballs (supa de perisoare), I have it with little cubes of feta cheese on a side. And I will forever do that.

We spent the rest of afternoon chatting and having a great time. Now, I honestly cannot remember if she drove me back home or my dad came to pick me up…

Since then, we visited their home many times and we spent great hours every single time! She also made delicious whole blueberries pie.

They had a nice raspberry bush growing in their backyard and from her I learned that trimming the bush at the end of the season will make the raspberry plant have a better regrowth and produce more fruits the next year. I took that piece of info and applied it to my raspberry bushes that now grow in my backyard.

Our paths somewhat connected when I started working at the bank. I was very excited to learn that she was working in the IT department (at head office) while I was working in-branch. We exchanged emails and internal notes for a good while, during my 3 years employment at the bank.

She’s gone now, but I will always remember her and talk about the memories we shared together.

May you rest in peace, Carmen!



You can donate to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation by clicking here and help build a future without breast cancer.


One Thought on “Breast Cancer Awareness Month

  1. Rachell S. on October 7, 2015 at 3:42 pm said:

    This is very beautiful <3 God bless her soul and may she rest in peace

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