This month, I celebrate two very special women in my life.
That’s me on the left with Denise Portner. Denise and her husband, Jeff, grew up with my husband. They’re like family. Five years ago, Denise underwent genetic testing for breast cancer because it runs in her family. She found out that she did, indeed, carry the breast cancer gene, BRCA2. While she was contemplating surgery to reduce her risk of ovarian and breast cancer, she learned, through an MRI, that she already had breast cancer. Cancer that didn’t show up on a mammogram. Denise’s quiet, dignified strength and bravery has been humbling and inspiring to watch. Even while fighting her disease, Denise was driven to bring support and education to other women going through the complicated process of living with and undergoing treatment for breast cancer. She first became involved with the amazing organization Living Beyond Breast Cancer as a patient. Today Denise is cancer-free and on the LBBC Board of Directors. This past weekend, Denise was honored at the organization’s annual Butterfly Ball, where she received the very special Going Beyond Award. Does she ever. It was my honor to be there celebrating her.
Marla Kim, second from the right in the group photo up top, was, literally, my very first friend in the world. She’s like my sister. So it’s no surprise to me that as she watched close friends around her battle cancer, she banded together a formidable group of women to form Moms Moving Mountains. Together they raise money and awareness and offer the most beautiful support to each other. They are a mighty group that should serve as a model to other mom-friends everywhere. They amaze me. Here is a photo of co-founders Karen Kleinberg Rosen(left) and Lisa Herman Goldberg(right). Lisa sadly lost her battle with cancer this year. I was lucky enough to meet Lisa—her light shined bright even when she was suffering. She was an integral part of Moms Moving Mountains and the organization will continue to grow in her honor.
As mothers, we already have such full plates. Somehow these women make room for more, to help and support other women. I hope you’ll join me in supporting them, too:
Living Beyond Breast Cancer
Moms Moving Mountains on Facebook