Monday, July 12, 2010

The Luck of Betty Godby

If ever there was a lesson in the value of early detection, it belongs to Betty Godby, who walks about in some very lucky shoes. Betty, whose cancer was discovered during a mammogram, is a co-worker of mine, and for my part, a friend. Like so many of my co-workers, she balances the many demands and deadlines of her job with the responsibilities of a family, including two children. On every occasion that I have needed to ask Betty for assistance, she has responded with unfailing patience.

Many tributes appear here in honor of brave and selfless individuals, but when I heard that Betty had been diagnosed with breast cancer, I was, to put it plainly, heartsick. Her tribute is the first I've written about someone I know personally with the disease.

Can you imagine finding out you have breast cancer, and calling yourself "lucky"? That's how Betty sees it.

I am really and truly very lucky for the type of breast cancer I have. It is called DCIS (Ductal Carcinoma In Situ), which is a very common type of breast cancer and is very treatable and curable . . . not that that takes away from the devastation of having breast cancer, but I could be in a lot worse shape, and there are people out there that are in a worse case then me.

My cancer is a stage zero which is really good; the doctor told me if I was going to get breast cancer that this is the type that you would want. So I am very thankful for the condition that I am in....

Betty had a double lumpectomy on June 21st, 2010, to remove two 2mm tumors and seven lymphoid on the right side, and a third tumor on the left side. Later in the summer, she had a second surgery to remove additional suspicious-looking tissue. Yet, her optimism remains intact, and she has determined that "this is not going to beat me!!"

So, to Betty Godby, whose shoes are lined with good luck: tomorrow, I will borrow them for just a little while. With each stride of the run, I will be grateful for your good fortune, and hope that every stage of your breast cancer journey is paved with zeros!

Here's to the next mile!

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