Mission: The Angel Pillow Project provides emotional and physical support to women touched by breast cancer while empowering cancer survivors and building community.
I was diagnosed with breast cancer in November of 2011, and received a heart- shaped pillow in the hospital after my double mastectomy. The surgery was very difficult. I was afraid, disappointed and scared. Many people were coming and going, offering local resources and information.
In the midst of all of this, I was given a pillow sewn by Lorraine Stevens, whose daughter had breast cancer. I was so touched by the gesture. It was such a wonderful and practical gift, and it really lifted my spirits.
With pain pumps, drainage tubes, surgery incisions and bandages, finding a comfortable position was extremely challenging. The nurses suggested rolling up towels to provide cushion and support, but the heart pillow was the perfect solution. It provided much needed padding and so much comfort to me in the weeks following my surgery. The pillow truly improved my recovery and was invaluable as I healed from my breast cancer treatments.
I continue to use my pillow today. It helps me get a more restful sleep at night, and I even take it with me when I travel. It's been by my side and helped me through some really rough times. If fact, the pillow helped me so much during my recovery that I wanted to share it with others.
My initial reaction to learning that I had cancer was that of deep sorrow and grief. Over time, however, I began to see my cancer as more of a turning point in my life. Change is never easy, but I began to learn that my struggles and pain would help me grow and become much stronger. I began searching for ways to turn the negative into something positive. I got involved with breast cancer advocacy groups and had the opportunity to meet some incredible survivors who were passionate about making a difference in the fight against cancer. I shared their passion, and was even more inspired to find ways I could contribute. My hope is that the Angel Pillow Project will connect breast cancer survivors together in a unique way, so that they can support one another through the cancer journey, and beyond.