Bernard's Blog: So, my sister has cancer - CBS46 News

Bernard's Blog: So, my sister has cancer

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Last Sunday I was in Barrow County covering a story about the alleged abuse of mentally disabled adults at an unlicensed group home.

It was a really disturbing story, but in the course of doing the story I met a woman who I was hoping to interview. She declined to go on camera because she was not feeling well. She mentioned that she was feeling sick and was just not up to it.

Being the nosey reporter that I am, I asked her if she was going to be okay. She said she had breast cancer and she was a fighter.

What struck me about this woman was her strength and spirit. Although you could tell she was sick, she was upbeat, outgoing and uplifting. For some reason I felt a connection to this woman, (I won't mention her name out of respect for her privacy) as she reminded me of my sister.

The woman complimented me on the breast cancer ribbon I was wearing and when I told her why I shaved my head, she offered encouragement and prayers. She also told me I should have my family checked to see if we are genetically predisposed to breast cancer.

Needless to say, I was outdone. Here she was fighting for her life, and all she cared about in that moment was helping me, a stranger, feel comfort and arming me with information that may save a life in my family. We chatted for about 15 to 20 minutes before my photog gave me the..."It's-time-to-get-back-to-work-look-so-we-can-finish-ou-story look." 

I didn't want to go, but I had to. My new friend and I shared a hug and when we did, I thought about Barbra and what she and this woman deal with on a daily basis.

Both women are fighters and I respect and admire them for fighting while also remaining upbeat and positive. I am not sure I could do the same in their position.

Barb update:

On Tuesday, Barb had her next chemo treatment and it was a difficult one. The process took a little longer than usual and it took a lot out of her.

When she left the clinic, she was in pain, weak, tired and nauseous. The tough thing is the next day she had to go back to clinic to get her shot to ensure her white blood cell count remains in a safe zone.

Needless to say, she was not feeling well. The good news is my brother in-law, ever the trooper, continued to pick up the slack and took care of her. He also had much needed help from his mother and father who flew in for the Thanksgiving holiday. 

Thanksgiving:

I talked to Barb today and as usual she looked great!! (I hope she is not reading this because I don't want my compliment making her dome even BIGGER than it already is!!!!) I often have to catch myself when I talked to her and see her on Skype. She looks and acts "normal" so it's easy to forget she is in a tough battle.

I have so much admiration and respect for my sister and ALL breast cancer fighters. I can't imagine what it must be like to get up everyday and have to fight, fight, fight such an insidious disease, while also living your life and trying to remain upbeat.

Barb was laughing and joking while we talked. I made fun of her bald head, big smile and anything else I could think of. I told her she was lucky that her husband was cooking thanksgiving dinner all by himself so no one in the house would get sick from her cooking.

Barb listened intently while my oldest daughter played "Mary Had a Little Lamb" on the violin.  It was a good time.  My mom, dad and kids spent time talking to Barb and her family in Phoenix. It made our Thanksgiving dinner that much sweeter to know my sister is hanging in there and remains positive.

I told Barb about all the prayers and well wishes I have received from people and she was really surprised and touched. She told me to tell everyone thank you for thinking about her and offering prayers.

She said every little bit helps.

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