As I leave Burgos and head into the flats toward Leon, I am keenly aware that today is the first day of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and that it’s probably time to get more serious about the subject.
Many people, here and at home, have asked me WHY I am doing the Camino. My answer depends on how much I want to get into it, and how deep of a conversation I really want to have, or if there is time to explain. So sometimes I just say: for the adventure, to do something cool, for spiritual or religious reasons, or even to satisfy the slightly independent wild hair I have always had. All of these answers are true actually.
But my REAL WHY is much more than that. It’s about that thing nobody wants to talk about. It’s about that thing we all dance around. It’s about that 40,000 number. It’s that 40,000 women per year die of breast cancer in the US. Just imagine what the worldwide figure must be.
My REAL WHY is about kids without moms, grand kids without grandmas, and widowers without wives. It’s about careers unfinished, potential not met, and dreams not realized. It’s about lives cut short, and all of the hurt that goes with that.
My college sorority sister and roommate, Toni Mark, died about a week ago from breast cancer. She was hilariously funny, very smart, a good leader, and incredibly musically talented. She was taken way too soon. Those of us that lived with her will miss her always. She was also a great mom to two teenage kids and a loving wife. What a loss on many many fronts. I can’t even imagine the devastation her family is feeling.
To think this happens 40,000 times over every year, is heartbreaking.
To think that there is a way to detect MANY more breast cancers earlier when they are curable, that is FDA approved and commercially available, but is not available to most women is unfathomable.
So that is my REAL WHY for doing the Camino. So there can be more kids with moms, more grand kids with grandmas, and less widowers without wives. So careers can be finished, so potential can be met, and dreams given a chance. This is my REAL WHY.
The next step is to fund the Density MATTERS multi-site study including 3,000 women so that we take one step closer to Molecular Breast Imaging becoming available to all women. This is the technological advancement we all want.
I hope you will join me in making the next generation of breast cancer screening available for our mothers, sisters, wives, friends, and daughters.
100% of your donation goes straight to the study, no cuts, fees, or administrative expenses taken out. Plus each dollar will be matched by the Foglia Family Foundation. Double your money!
One of my favorite TED talks – Simon Senek, Start With WHY
Here is the link:
Dr. Deborah Rhodes from the Mayo Clinic, who started with WHY and wound up inventing a life saving technology.
Here is the link: https://www.ted.com/talks/deborah_rhodes
The Mayo Clinic for allowing their doctors to create, invent and research.
To the many who have donated so far. Thank you so much!
To those MBI early adopters – for being forward thinking!