Tuesday, June 2, 2009



*a person or thing that survives.

*a person who continues to function or prosper in spite of opposition, hardship, or setbacks.

*to remain alive or in existence.

*to carry on despite hardships or trauma.

*to cope with (a trauma or setback); persevere.

This Saturday, June 6, 2009, is the 19th Annual Susan G. Komen North Texas Race for the Cure. Komen's Promise is to save lives and end breast cancer forever by empowering people, ensuring quality care for all and energizing science to find the cures. Komen is the largest source of nonprofit funds dedicated to fight against breast cancer in the world. Saturday is all about the SURVIVORS. We race for them. We race so that they can continue to SURVIVE and so that others will never have to get the diagnosis that they have breast cancer.

I have volunteered with Komen North Texas Race for the Cure for the last 5 years, but Saturday is more than just volunteering for me. Saturday is about my mom, Katie Stevens, who is a TWO TIME BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR. Saturday is personal.

My mom found out she had breast cancer for the first time in March 2000. She had inflammatory breast cancer and had chemotherapy, a mastectomy, more chemo, and radiation. I was a sophomore in college and lived four hours away from home. It was very hard to be away from my mom during her treatments. It was a very scary time. You always think cancer happens to other people. That it couldn't possibly affect you or your family. That is until you are affected by it. We all breathed a sigh of relief when the doctors told mom that she was cancer free after all her treatment. I had always heard that if someone who had cancer SURVIVED to five years without a recurrence that was a very good sign. I breathed a sigh of relief when mom hit her 5 year SURVIVOR anniversary.

In June 2006 we all participated in the Komen Race as usual. We were SO thankful that mom had been cancer free for 6 years. Then of course, like it always does, cancer snuck up on us again, and mom found a lump in her remaining breast in July of that year. The breast cancer was HER2-positive and required a mastectomy, chemo, radiation, and a years worth of Herceptin, which studies have shown lower the risk of cancer returning in people whose tumors have too much HER2 protein, and which had not been available 6 years prior. I could NOT believe this was happening again. What in the world? She had already been through all this. I was so upset. But in the true fashion that is my mom, she told me that I could only be upset for a little bit and then I had to stop. She would fight this just like last time.

Fighter is definitely a word that describes my mom. She never let her diagnosis get her down. She trusted God through everything. She did everything the doctors told her to. And she always had a positive attitude. Because according to my mom "Attitude is Everything", and I do believe it is. I believe that everything happens for a reason, but we might not know what that reason is, at least not right away. Mom has been a wonderful counselor for others who have been diagnosed with breast cancer. She is able to provide them with information and support. Maybe this is what God needed her to do.

Saturday is for my mom and others like her. They are people who are not letting a cancer diagnosis stop them. They are fighting and SURVIVING! We celebrate and honor them.


  1. Katie along with all of the other SURVIVORS of breast cancer are such an inspiration and encouragement to us all. Please know that I will be celebrating with you on Saturday. I plan to spend a good part of my morning in prayer for those who are facing cancer, those who have and their families, as well as the doctors and researchers who have dedicated their lives to finding a cure. I will "Pray for the CURE"! Love you!! (((hugs)))

  2. What a great post and tribute to Katie as well as the many others who have dealt first hand with cancer. I have always admired her from the first time I met her. She's special!