Monday, March 14, 2011

Harley at 60

A very dear friend of our family, JB, is turning 60 this week and he loves his Harley-Davidson motorcycles. I wanted to make something really special that would reflect my appreciation for all the support he has shown my husband and I over the years (especially during my treatments). Even during the worst of my chemo, I have fond memories of the acceptance and love that JB sent our way. When my hair fell out, my husband took me out for a motorcycle ride to cheer me up and we met up with JB and others. I was quite a bit nervous as I had decided not to hide my baldness and some in the group did not know I had been diagnosed with Inflammatory Breast Cancer. My husband, bless him, also shaved his head that day in solidarity. When we met up with the group and I took off my helmet, you could see that no one really knew what to say or do. We both looked quite different and unexpected. After a moment, JB came over and gave me a hug and proclaimed loudly that now I really fit in because I looked like all the other "bikers." It was the exact thing I needed to hear and it broke the ice for everyone! As others approached with questions and open support, I realized that the struggles of a survivor can be difficult for friends and loved ones to witness without feeling at a loss of what they can/should say or do. Being able to communicate my status and the needs of myself and my family gave my friends a way to share in the journey. The ride turned into a beautiful celebration of life, friendship, and love which I will never forget. Happy Birthday JB, ride safe, and thanks!

Blessings, Jeannette
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