Today I had the opportunity to share a lunch with 500 people, many of whom are breast cancer survivors. My dear friend Connie joined me for an experience that will stay with us both for a very long time. We witnessed stories of courage, and strength of survivors and of those who are now our angels.
The event was the Cure Breast Cancer for ME Luncheon, at the Holiday Inn by the Bay in Portland, Maine. This luncheon is one of the signature events conducted by the Maine Cancer Foundation, who by their tireless efforts fund breast cancer research and make cervical and breast cancer screenings available to those who have no access to insurance.
As we arrived at the venue we were greeted by large bouquets of pink balloons, but more than that, each volunteer was beaming with a wide smile, the love was so apparent. As a survivor I was given a beautiful pale pink rose to pin to my blouse, it was such a lovely gesture and really made me feel special.
This event was significant for Connie. You see Connie's son in law, Elnur Jafarli lost his Mother Sevda On August 25 2011 to breast cancer. Elnur is from Azerbaijan and now lives here in the states, you can see him in the photo with his two sisters, Mehubbehr and Aysha. In honor of Elnur's Mom we brought this photo along with us today, it was a gesture meant to celebrate her life and her courage, and to always remember our angels.
Pictured above is an amazing woman by the name of Meredith Burgess, this energetic, and vivacious breast cancer survivor is the founder of the Cure Breast Cancer for ME Luncheon. Meredith is also the angel behind our breast cancer specialty plates here in Maine, her success at this endeavor have allowed people all over the state to support the Maine Cancer Foundation, and to help fund programs like the Me. Breast and Cervical Health Program. I am in awe of the accomplishments of this brave lady and how many lives she has touched. Bravo Meredith.
Fun and very exciting !! We had the chance to meet Cindy Williams anchor of WCSH 6 news in Portland. Cindy was very gracious and has supported the luncheon since its inception.
To close I will share with you my favorite part of the day. At the luncheon there was a palpable energy, an embracing love that was ever present. As the survivors walked about the room, recognizable due to their pale pink rose corsages, it was evident that a lot of good has come from early detection. It was also obvious that when crisis strikes we woman are not alone, it was a feeling of being shepherded through the worst imaginable moment in your life. Connie then said something I will never forget, looking around the room at all the love she said, "It makes me not feel afraid"
That was a mouthful sweetie............I love your simple wisdom Connie.