The tumor was still so
small, the device didn't even pick it up.
Story # 2 Sharon, as told by her daughter, Amy Lutz
Working in the news business, we often hear of people dealing with loss and I always wondered; How do they do it?
Sadly, you only learn the answer when tragedy hits close to home and your own life is thrown into turmoil.
I can’t remember the exact day, but I remember that it was October of 2001.
I had come home from a college class, not knowing that my life was about to drastically change.
Much of that day I have managed to blur out of my memory, but what I can still recall is hearing the words of my mother telling me she had breast cancer.
The moment you realize that your parents are not invincible, is not one forgotten.
It changes everything.
It changes you.
But this story isn’t about me, this story is about the woman who brought me into this world.
The most incredible woman I have ever known, my mother, Sharon Lutz.
Instead of letting cancer beat her, she chose to fight her battle, and fight it hard.
My mother came from a big Italian family.
She’s the mom that asks you twenty times if you’re sure you don’t need anything else to eat or drink.
Pleasing others is what brings her happiness.
She dedicated her life to my father, our family, and to her students.
She taught elementary music, a job that required an endless amount of patience and dedication.
After finding a small lump during a self breast exam, she went in for a mammogram.
The tumor was still so small, the device didn’t even pick it up.
A sonogram did, and soon after, she had a lumpectomy to remove it.
Unfortunately, it wouldn’t be that simple.
During the surgery, they discovered that her sentinel node was not clear, the cancer had spread.
A few weeks later, she had a very painful surgery to remove several lymph nodes.
After recovering, she made the decision to continue teaching.
Her students needed her, and it was obvious that she needed them more than ever before.
My mom went through 8 chemo treatments and 6 weeks of radiation 5 days a week.
She would have a treatment on a Thursday and be back to work by Monday.
Never once did she show weakness, not once did she cry.
She faced one of the scariest times in her life with so much strength and courage it still amazes me to this day.
7 years ago my mother, like way too many woman, had a choice to make.
She chose to fight.
Her story is the prime example of how important it is to keep an eye on your body.
Early detection really can save your life.
I have no doubt that it saved hers.
Today is my mother’s 61st birthday.
She is far stronger and more beautiful than ever, a true testament to what it means to be a “survivor.”
The cure for all cancers may come in our lifetime, and it may not.
But it will come.
And until it does, the only thing we can do is continue to fight, just like the woman I thank God I can still call Mom.