Last February, we held the first “Forget for a Moment” Makeover event. Thirteen women came together all touched by breast cancer. Many had just finished their treatment, a couple are metastatic, and one who is far too young to be going through this, was starting chemotherapy the next day. They came to be pampered, to get their hair and makeup done, to enjoy a soothing spa treatment. They wanted to have fun, relax, and rejuvenate.
But what I saw was a group of women who came together to share their stories and experiences, to support one another, to laugh, to cry, and to simply live their lives. These women know how to live, to savour the good moments, and to weather the not-so-good ones.
That day, the weather was dreadful, the kind of day that started with snow and then turned to freezing rain. By dinnertime, the roads were icy and full of accidents. But most of these women made it out anyway, some car pooled, others had their husbands drive them (bless their souls), one ubered, and still others drove themselves. A few said to me, “I was determined to get here”. It’s that determination that gets them through, keeps them going. I am humbled and honoured to know each and every one of them.
I am also proud of the local business owners who generously donated their time, expertise, and products and services. Despite all the bad news we encounter on a daily basis, I choose to believe the world is made up of good people and this just reinforces that belief. The generosity and spirit of giving is alive and well.
A few people on the giving end of the evening said to me, “I learned a lot tonight”. And I thought, this is what this event is all about. Women living with cancer sharing their stories and experiences so others can learn. Not only those with cancer but those without, or those who have loved ones with cancer…so they can learn and see first hand what it’s all about…ordinary people living under extraordinary circumstances and doing okay.
At the end of the evening as we were cleaning up, the owner of the salon said to me, “Do you want to make this an annual event?” To which I replied, “Absolutely!”
The beautiful photos were taken by Melanie Mathieu, http://www.mathieu-photo.com.
To see the complete photo gallery of the Forget for a Moment makeover event, please click on the following link: http://mathieuphoto.pixieset.
This article was originally published on February 25, 2016.