"Anna, 12 years ago I had a recurrence of breast cancer with bone mets, and I'm
still here and stitching. Keep your chin up and subversively fight! Many hugs."
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Life and all its warts
One with outward courage dares to die; one with inward courage dares to live. --Lao-tzu
Life should be fair.
That's a concept I cannot shake from my personal belief system. I'm continually disappointed in a universe that picks on certain people who have done nothing to harm anyone or anything. I expecially find it irksome, irritating, infuriating that someone who is contributing to a better world gets targeted.
Recently I was requested to run information on my Subversive Stitchers: Women Armed with Needles blog about a project a group of quilters have organized. It is a miniature quilt auction to raise funds for Anna Millea. They call it Hearts for Anna.
Anna won one bout with breast cancer and if you see her art or her smile, you know she lives a joyous life. I don't know her personally, but I know a legion of women much like Anna who have served their families, loved unselfishly, created whole worlds and lives, contributed to the community good, and maintained and elevated the moral fiber of our country -- they all faced breast cancer or a form of cancer. Some beat it. Some didn't.
Now Anna faces a reoccurance of the cancer and it has spread into her bones. She needs 12 rounds of chemo, if I understand that right. She's ready to fight. Not that she really wants to, but she prefers to live her life, so she's ready.
It is unfair enough that she's facing cancer again. But like too many Americans -- she is facing it without the benefit of health insurance. She is listed as having a 'pre-existing' disease that they won't cover. If Anna needs toe surgery, heart transplant, or her knee replaced -- she's quite possibly covered -- but the one thing she has and the insurance company knows is most likely for her to have -- is cancer. For that her insurance will not pay one cent.
Anyone who says Americans don't need anything done to the health care coverage in this country are ostriches with their heads firmly buried in the sand!
I've asked people to leave encouraging comments for Anna on my blog, as well as get involved in the project: Hearts for Anna. One person, Lisa Quintana, simply wrote:
Until I read Lisa's words there was a part of me that wasn't hopeful for Anna. My father had cancer that spread to his bones and at that time it was a death warrant. Times have changed, research has improved survival chances, the tools are there for Anna to continue creating her beautiful fabric art, loving her family, and living her life. And to have Lisa continuing to give hope and also produce beautiful art is a double blessing!
Only the money will keep Anna from a healthy future. I find that totally unacceptable that a country as wealthy as the United States of America can throw away people based on money.
Of course I'm also a believer that good healthcare is an inalienable right. Everyone should have free and equal access to that. In this case, Anna's rights are being trampled by an insurance company's profit margin.
I'm so glad the health community finally decided that pregnancy is a natural function and NOT a disease because every second child would be termed: pre-existing disease. Or maybe that's on the horizon and we'll soon see family size limits set by insurance companies. But I digress.
Please check out the Subversive Stitchers blog and find out how you can help Anna. Once you see her smile, how can you not want to help?