Cynthia Johnson of Midlothian, VA

I have a charm bracelet that I started after I recovered from cancer.  I am a breast cancer survivor and I have been living with NED (No Evidence of Disease) for over two years.  But I would like to make a bracelet about my sister Lisa. Two years ago I was diagnosed with Stage 2A breast cancer.  The hardest part of hearing the diagnosis was knowing that I would have to tell my mom and dad, and my younger brother and my cousin Lisa.  See Lisa is more than my cousin.  She is more like my sister (charm #3186) and I think she knows most, if not all, of my secrets.  

Lisa and I grew up together in a small town in South Carolina (charm #3137).  I was older by one year but we did everything together, even both choosing to play the clarinet (charm #1624) in the high school band.  Once we graduated from college, she settled in Atlanta, Georgia (charm #3729) and me in Virginia.  In my job, I travel frequently and more than once Lisa has tagged along when I visited San Francisco to ride the cable cars (charm #8256) and New York to attend plays. After I was diagnosed, I had a waiting period before I could undergo surgery.  During that time, I had trouble sleeping and needed someone to talk to, but I didn’t want to worry my parents and brother, so I turned to Lisa.  Countless times I have telephoned (charm #1165) her in the middle of the night to have her calm me down by reassuring me that everything was going to be alright.  She would always talk as long as necessary, sometimes into the wee hours of the morning, until I was ok.  

When I underwent surgery, Lisa was right there with my parents and brother.  The morning of my surgery she gave me an angel necklace and told me that my guardian angel (charm #3387) would be right there beside me.  And when chemotherapy forced my hair to come out, she suddenly decided that she wanted short hair too.  So she cut her hair and then purchased us both matching caps with the pink ribbon (charm #3448) embroidered on them. I have fully recovered and I am preparing to travel to Europe for an extended period for work.  And Lisa has already told me that she has her passport (charm #3895) ready and she will be “tagging along” for a couple of weeks.  I thank God everyday for my recovery and my family and their love and support. And for my sister who has been there with me and for me as long as I can remember.

Cynthia Johnson

Midlothian, VA

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