We hear this from friends, colleagues, advertisements and family. Somebody plans a special event and every one races to their phones to update their calendar. Whether it be this week or next month, we mark our calendars. We save the date!
I recall very early in my career, I was asked to create a “Save The Date” card for an upcoming golf tournament. I did as I was told and I sent to over 10,000 constituents. Soon after, I received a call from a friendly board member informing me that I had forgotten to put the date on the “Save The Date” card. Over twenty years ago, I still recall the exact date of that tournament.
Like so many, I carry my calendar with me now on my phone. Doctors fill my calendar virtually. It is almost impossible for me to NOT to save the date anymore.
Then, cancer sneaks in and whispers quietly…don’t put that on your calendar, you may not be around for that event. I look at my kids and I wander what is the date of their graduation, wedding, births…you get the idea.
I recall sitting at my kitchen table four years ago with my, then senior in high-school, and my husband. The conversation was hard, the decisions felt huge and the tears were flowing. I had just been diagnosed with stage IV Inflammatory Breast Cancer and at that same time we had to make a decision about my daughter’s college plans.
Should she stay home and take care of her sick Mom? Would she accept an academic scholarship to a college out of state? Should she stay close in case we needed her to help? And, the question never asked out load, will Mom make it to the graduation date?
How do you plan when you have no idea if you will be alive next month, let alone four years from now? Well, I will tell you…
You mark your calendar, you save the date and you plan to plan. You wake up every, single day and put your shoes on just like everyone else. You accept the new job, you plan the wedding, you save for college and you continue to look forward to the next year, five years, ten years, twenty years and so on. Why in the world would I allow cancer permission to rob me of hope? NO ONE knows what tomorrow brings.
As I sat in those stadium seats last weekend, listening to the commencement song and watching my senior in college walk up to that podium to receive her diploma, I couldn’t help but whisper back to cancer…I am saving the date.