On the 7th of May every year, my family and I pack our bags, pile in a car, and head straight to my grandma’s house in North Carolina. When we get there, we get dressed in all pink from head to toe, while my grandmother dresses in purple. She ties up her long gray hair with a purple bow and pins a purple ribbon on her chest. We make our way to a field full of food trucks, tents, loud music, and a group of fighters. My grandmother is one of those fighters. Every year we walk all day and all night in celebration of her winning the battle over against cancer.
1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer over the course of their lifetime. My grandmother was one of them. We all know that one fighter who told breast cancer to pick on someone his own size. Breast cancer is the monster we used to imagine hiding under our beds when we were little children. You feel like it is always there, just sitting and watching, but you do not want to check and you do not want to know if it is there. I am here to tell you to check. You need to know if that monster is clinging onto your breast because the difference between knowing and not knowing can be the difference between life and death. Besides lung cancer, breast cancer kills more women than any other cancer. This monster is deadly.
But we will shine that light under the bed and reveal this monster. We will find a cure, but until then, we as women need to keep fighting. We are all warriors. But they, who fought the beast, are survivors. Statistics will say that African–American women are more likely to get breast cancer than any other race and that women under 45 are more likely to get breast cancer. But I believe that if it affects one, it effects all. If one woman suffers, we all suffer. This is a battle that we must all fight together. No one should go through breast cancer or any cancer alone. I think it is important to get involved and to let fighters know that we are right behind them. An example of this is participating in a breast cancer awareness walk or run, where all of the money will go to finding a cure.
I will not give up. I am a warrior. The question is, are you?