December 9, 2010 is a day that will forever be etched in my family’s history. It is the day we received the devastating news that my mom, Nancy, had Stage IV colon cancer. We were all shocked since cancer had never reared its ugly head in our family before. The weeks and months ahead were filled with surgery (which took 20 inches of my moms colon and half her liver), various trips back to the hospital due to infections, followed by six months of chemo. Watching the strongest person I knew, the entertainer, the social butterfly, have to endure all of this pain was unimaginable. Holding true to the rock she is, while we were all falling apart, my mom was the one putting us together in her usual positive way. She would hold our hands and tell us it would be okay.
In order to help deal with the stress of everything I started running. In an effort to turn a negative into a positive, Team NanSan was formed and our first race (my first race ever!) was the Get Your Rear in Gear® – Saratoga. Since that very first race in Saratoga, Team NanSan has attended numerous colon cancer events and raised thousands of dollars in hopes of finding a cure.
The phrase “Get Your Rear in Gear” means hope to me. It means there is a wonderful organization out there that shares the same goal as me– to spread awareness and to find a cure for this devastating disease!
My mom has handled the last five years since her diagnosis with such positivity, grace and strength. It has been awe inspiring to watch. She is now a walking advertisement for colon cancer awareness, sharing her story with everyone she meets in hopes of having a positive effect. Without a doubt, my mom’s life motto is “live with no regrets.” She has shown us all what it means to enjoy each day since being diagnosed with colon cancer. She is committed to enjoying all life has to offer! (And that all her family and friends get regular colonoscopies!) My mom is a true fighter, survivor, inspiration and my hero.