This is my friend Karoline. She was recently diagnosed with Stage II/III breast cancer. She is a wife and mother to 2 beautiful little girls, Kamilla and Tamsen, and a sweet and snuggley Puggle, Polie.
Karoline has been courageously battling her cancer in a fearless manner! When Karoline found out that she would need to go through chemo therapy as one of her treatments, she contacted me to schedule 2 very important portrait sessions. The first one would be a portrait session with her family before she lost her hair. The second would be a session where her girls and husband helped her to shave her head in preparation for the hair loss.
I was blown away by Karoline’s positive attitude and ability to tackle this enormous milestone with grace and integrity. We had such a fantastic time together during our family portrait session. We walked through our neighborhood in the South End, snagged a few cute shots and then headed out for ice cream to finish the night.
Later the next week, Karoline called me. We needed to reschedule our session for when Karoline would shave her head to an earlier date because the chemo was starting to take effect quicker than anticipated. By the time we had our session (just 2 days later), Karoline’s hair was already falling out by the handful.
Karoline wanted to have her daughters help her through this phase of her battle by having them cut and shave her hair. She knew that by having them be a part of this experience, it would help them make the adjustment to a mom with no hair. I don’t have the words to describe the power of this family experience. All I can say is that you could feel the strength and love pouring from each and every one of the family members present on that balcony that day!
The girls were initially excited to dig in and play barber with their mommy.
However as we went further along through the process, they began to see just how delicate their mommy’s hair was. These little girls happen to be even braver than I would have ever expected. They were caring, kind, and delicate as they helped their mom gracefully enter her new stage—defeating cancer!
Here are some of the powerful images I captured during our session. This first image is when the girls took a picture of the back of Karoline’s head. With so much hair already falling out, she had large bald spots in back already.
Karoline’s husband, Todd, has signed up for 2 marathons in support of Karoline, the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, the Jimmy Fund and the Baystate Marathon. Please consider checking out his support page and offer your support towards his fundraising goal. Here is a link to his support page: Todd’s Support Page.
Finally, since it is Words to Live By Wednesday, I thought I would share one final powerful quote for the day:
“Cancer is so limited. It cannot cripple love; it cannot corrode faith; it cannot shatter hope; it cannot eat away peace; it cannot destroy confidence; it cannot kill friendship; it cannot shutout memories; it cannot silence courage; it cannot invade the soul; it cannot reduce eternal life; it cannot quench the spirit.“- Author unknown
For all you who either are going through cancer now, or have friends and family who are, hang in there and keep on fighting the good fight! Hopefully soon we will have the answer and cure for this horrible disease!