According to Webster’s Dictionary, the term soldier refers to “one engaged in military service and especially in the army” (Soldier). In order to be classified as a soldier, they have to be in the military service? How about having to battle against an invisible entity for a whole year with an unexpected arrival? How about fighting for life without guns or bombs but with painful injections? How about sacrificing bodily assets to save their own life? Is that not classified as a soldier? Soldiers are strong, courageous, and triumphant. Well my mother is indeed a soldier, a cancer soldier.

I never really understood the amount of energy it took to go through cancer. I thought the doctors just gave the patient medicine and all of the bad would go away. It wasn’t until my mother was diagnosed that I realized how brutal cancer actually was. I had the opportunity to join my mother on the front line of this battle. We encountered many losses during combat, hair, nails, and even appetite. Every time I looked into her eyes I saw pain and surrender, but behind that pain and surrender was strength. The strength to never give up. The strength to continue to fight. The strength to live. And with her strength, came courage.

I can not even imagine how my mother felt through the crusade. Every chemo treatment was like her losing a battle. But she never complained; she would always say things like “ Four more treatments to go.” or, “Hey, I am almost done with this, just a couple more treatments”. Watching her lay there helpless because the pain medications were powerless broke my heart. It hurt to see her hurt. She never broke down in front of my brothers and sisters and I, but one day she cried. She told me that she would never wish this on her worst enemy and that she was scared. But she never showed her fearfulness. Instead she showed determination. She strived to conquer this invader. And with that, she is a courageous soldier.

Going through this hardship, my mother never once blamed anybody for her circumstance, but I did. I blamed God. I asked Him if he was doing it to punish me for my imperfections, if he was doing it to give me a reality check, if he was doing it to hurt me, to make me watch my mother suffer. But in the end I realized that it was not to cause me harm but to strengthen not only my mother, but my entire family. This affliction started out as a curse but ended up being a blessing. It is really hard to keep a positive perception through this and to keep your faith strong. My family has benefited so much from this experience and has caused us to become a closer unit and our faith has grown tremendously. Now my mother is extremely strong healthy. Watching her triumph over this obstacle has been an eye opening reality. Even though she may have had a few casualties and lost a couple of battles, she still won the war in the end. She is a soldier. A cancer soldier.


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