$3,410 of $5,000
57 donations

This fundraiser ended on 11/17/12

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Funds raised here will be used for Lois's medical costs and related expenses not covered by insurance.

My mom grew up on a family farm and got her early education in a one-room school house. Things that seem so common were exotic to her. (She still talks about the first time she tried spaghetti, when she was twelve.) But it was the work ethic she learned that stuck with her. At 71, my mom still has not retired.

Growing up, watching my mother type to earn a living taught me an important lesson—much can be done through sheer force of will. Mom has a tremor in her hands that makes movement unpredictable. The same neurological condition that affects her hands leaves her with a voice that is sometimes hard to understand. It took decades to get a diagnosis, and she tolerated it all with what can only be described as an endless supply of grace.

Instead, in a life that could have been defined by a tremulous voice and hands, my mother has worked as a phone operator and a medical transcriptionist. When she turned seventy, she self-published a book and joined Curves. And she taught by example never to let your weaknesses define you. You should take what you shouldn’t be able to do, and do precisely that.

But now she has cancer. Despite the fact that she’s now got six weeks of daily chemo plus radiation ahead to treat her colon cancer, what is worrying and consuming her is how she’ll pay the bills. Her insurance leaves her a 20% copay for everything (every dose of chemo, every drug administration, every test, and for surgery after). She still types for a local ophthalmologist, but during treatment, she won’t be able to work at all.

I look at this woman, one who defined courage for me, one who so unrelentingly modeled what it means to overcome, and it makes me sick inside to hear her worry about money when she should be gearing up for a fight to keep her body whole.

My mother taught me to type, to sew and to stand up for what I believe in. I inherited her wild laugh and slow to rise (but fierce) temper. She taught me to fight for what matters. Your donations will help her fight cancer, and your help will give her peace of mind.

Thank you for giving whatever you can.

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