Let's talk about this no makeup selfie "for cancer" silliness that is going around Facebook right now. I got "called out" by the way I hate even saying "called out" because it just feels so forced and dated but that's not what I am here to talk about. I got called out and I participated because what are you supposed to do, not participate and look like a complete ass hole for not posting a picture of yourself not looking your very best? GASP! I didn't even know that Facebook allowed unedited pictures to be posted. I mean, they have filters built in now so you can easily filter the shit out of yourself. I'm surprised we can even recognize each other in real life anymore. It's all just getting a little ridiculous.
So, I posted my no make up selfie in the name of breast cancer awareness. I think it's silly because I feel like it is another "look at me" "tell me how pretty I am with no makeup on" and it sorta gets away from the point if there really is one. What are you supposed to do though, not participate and look like a jerk for not showing the world your stupid face with no makeup in the name of finding a cure for cancer, or participate and look like an attention seeking but supportive-ish jerk? Either way you look like an asshole so I opted to play it safe and play along. To who ever started this crap thanks for providing us all with a rock and hard place but whatever, it's really not a big deal.
I got "called out" via text by a good friend that likes to keep me in check. His comments to me were along the lines that it is a silly "campaign" and while it is good to raise awareness and money for a cause he isn't sure that this is really doing anything.
I think at most it maybe reminds someone to do a self exam or to schedule an appointment and that is a win and so fine...1 point for no makeup selfies.
I do not think in any way that this is a "brave" thing to do which is why I posted my picture. I'm not brave. I rarely wear makeup anymore and so it was a pretty effortless thing to do. I can also be a bit lazy.
I do however have a very good friend that is BRAVE.
All of this selfie silliness aside I want to talk about someone I know who IS BRAVE and so much more. I'm not even sure that she would like being called brave but hey, the truth hurts.
I met this chick at Gymboree. I am big on feeling peoples energy and before we even uttered a word to one another I could tell she had great energy and that I liked her already. I struck up a conversation about something that is not even memorable but what is memorable is that day...the day I met Melissa Ross. This chick just oozed good juju as she would say and I would say she had kick ass energy and I wanted her in my life. We let our daughters play together at Gymboree while we half watched them and we talked and talked and when we got booted out of Gymboree we exchanged phone numbers and kept talking. I HATE talking on the phone and we were on the phone for two hours.
We became instant friends and I couldn't even remember what it was like before I met her. She is good to the core but not that annoying kind of sugary sweet that makes you think the person is full of shit. She is just GOOD. Her soul is GOOD and she is FUNNY. She's got a little twisted sick humor that I love. We had so much fun taking our girls to the park, the aquarium, having playdates, and just being new stay at home moms and trying to figure out how it works exactly.
Then it came....the phone call. She found a lump and the Doctors were concerned. I assured her, not that she ever asked for reassurance, but I assured her selfishly for myself. Nothing could happen to Melissa.
I couldn't handle that thought.
I couldn't handle the thought of her being scared. ME ME ME.
The next phone call came a few days later. It was fucking cancer. We talked and talked and she was calm and positive. I don't remember what I said or what she said. I hope I didn't say anything stupid. I just remember she sounded like Melissa. Calm, rational, and positive. We made some jokes because we are both just that way and then the whirlwind happened....surgeries, appointments, moves, chemo...a whirlwind that I don't understand so I can't explain it.
The thing about Melissa is the chick doesn't complain. She has been so positive through months of chemo. She doesn't talk about how much it sucks and hurts and I know it has to. I've stayed fairly quiet throughout her journey because I don't know what to say. I don't want to say anything that is stupid or accidentally insulting or annoying. She has kept her sense of humor and patience and same cheery non sugary good outlook on life.
With scarves she made for us. Of course she made something for us.
I am happy to say that she is cancer free! She is not finished with her "journey" through this hell. I don't feel comfortable talking about what she is going through or has been through because it isn't my story to tell. I would love for you all to know her because I can guarantee you that knowing her would make your life better.
She is someone that has made me look at things differently and with a lighter and more fun outlook. I take things so seriously and she has always had so much fun! No matter what it has been, crazy kid phases, moving a home to a different state in the midst of cancer, planning super fun kid parties, no matter what it is she sees the fun in it. I am not saying any of this because she had cancer. She's not defined by cancer. She is not Melissa the girl with cancer or who had cancer. She is Melissa Ross and she is the bravest and most incredible woman I know because she handles everything with grace and humor.
So, posting a selfie is not brave in my opinion but maybe it raises some awareness and reminds some people both men and women to do a self exam or reminds them to make a donation to help find a cure.
Sorry for putting the spotlight on you, Melissa. I hope I haven't made you too uncomfortable and I hope you know what a bright spot in my life you are. I don't say it often because I don't know how but I love you beyond the words my little vocabulary will allow me to express. Thank you for being my friend and for allowing me to be in your life.
To all of you fighting the fight, keep on fighting! Prayers and good juju out to all of you! A cure is on it's way and in the meantime a whole lot of annoying selfies.
Here is a link to make an immediate difference and if you'd like to get to know a little more about Melissa and her journey you can get caught up right here: