On Sept 16, 2001, while the country was still in shock from an unforgivable act of terrorism, my wife Jill discovered a lump in her breast. She lost her battle of Feb 8, 2006. It would be an incredibly selfish thing to, in any way, mention what happened to myself and our family’s life. It was, is, and will always be about her, her life, and how she showed herself how strong a woman she was. Not a day passes that I don’t draw inspiration from her life, the way she lived it, an the grace she showed battling her breast cancer. She lives forever in everyone who knew her.
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We were visiting Milwaukee to drop our daughter off at college and we were upgraded to the Pink Room when we checked in. I think it was a sign from my mom, who died of breast cancer when our daughter was 3 years old and I always regretted that my mom was not around to see what an amazing, talented and creative woman her grand daughter become. But maybe she was watching all along and this was her sign to let us know she’s still with us. Thank you Pink Room. What an amazing idea and we loved the room.
I found a lump doing a self exam this past December. Needless to say, 2013 has brought chemotherapy, followed by surgery and soon radiation.
What I’ve discovered about myself is that I am stronger than I thought… and so are you.
I was diagnosed with breast cancer in Sept 2010 when my son was just shy of 5 months old and my daughter was two. My husband had just started a new job, working nights and the kids and I only saw him on the weekends. So when I found a lump, I was convinced it was just a cyst – nothing to worry about. When we got the news, I was so shocked and wanted it gone immediately. I had surgery 10 days after being diagnosed and opted for a mastectomy to avoid treatment. I ended up having positive margins which in result led me to 33 radiation treatments.
In April of 2011 I chose to do a bilateral mastectomy for preventative measures. I am so thankful that I did that. I am able to enjoy my life and my kids growing up without having the worry everyday if it is going to come back. I chose to stay positive, continued to work every day, and focus on my little ones. That is what got me through. My kids are now almost 3 & 5 and I am thankful every day that I get to spend with them.
Best of luck to whoever reads this in your journey of breast cancer. Once a pink sister, always a pink sister!
The Pink Room program is up for an award from PR News, an organization dedicated to providing resources, information and training to PR and Communication professionals. Each year, PR News has an award ceremony recognizing Corporate Social Responsibility. Their CSR Awards program is designed to recognize organizations that “ took chances, made incredible strides and understand the power of CSR in public relations.” Obviously, we believe that The Pink Room program and our relationship with ABCD falls into this category, and it’s exciting to see that PR News recognizes it as well.
The PR News CSR Awards fall across over a dozen different categories from “Employee Relations” to “Workplace Innovation”; we’re in the running for the “Corporate-Community Partnership” category. What’s most exciting about this, however, is when you look at the businesses we’re up against. From Crafstmen Tools to Toys R US to the WWE, these national and international companies hold big names, and we’re proud to see the InterContinental Milwaukee & ABCD partnership listed among them.
Here are all of the 2013 finalists in the Corporate-Community Partnership category.
- ARAMARK Corp – ARAMARK Building Community
- Baxter International Inc. – Educating Tomorrow’s Innovators Today: Baxter’s Science@Work Program
- Craftsman – Craftsman House United
- Delta Dental – Delta Dental/ADCF “America’s Missions of Mercy”
- eVgo – Evs for Trees
- Golin Harris & Waters Corporation – Building a Global Network to Improve Public Health
- InterContinental Milwaukee – The Pink Room
- Pacific Gas and Electric Company – PG&E Summer Jobs Program
- Toys R US – Fighting Childhood Cancer, One Cup at a Time
- WWE – Be a Star
The Awards Luncheon takes place on Monday the 11th, and we’ll have a representative of the hotel there ready to accept the award should we be so fortunate to win. You can find more information about the event including all of the award categories and nominees here.
Most importantly, we have to thank the wonderful staff at ABCD, and all of the incredibly inspiring and strong women that have made this program possible. We couldn’t do this without you.