Do you know Dana Bell?

She’s beautiful. She’s strong. She’s a single mother of three. She’s performed in Expressing Motherhood. She is a sister, a friend, a colleague…a daughter.
She has breast cancer.

Dana at Expressing Motherhood

Maybe you don’t know the Dana Bell. But, I’m sure you know a Dana Bell. I certainly knew a Dana Bell. My mother was a Dana.

Our audience in January of 2011 had the distinct pleasure of hearing Dana tell her story on stage. Dana is an amazing woman. The courage she has still today and had nearly two years ago to stand in front of hundreds and talk about her diagnosis, is amazing.

Dana and her mother after her performance

More courage than I can stand. Courage that cuts to the very core of me as a woman, a mother, and someone who lost a dear loved one to breast cancer.

I remember our first rehearsal with the January 2011 cast. It was a hard one for me. When Dana rehearsed her piece for us, I sat listening as focused as everyone else in that room was. As she spoke, my tears fell ferociously while the memories of losing my own mother to breast cancer came alive.

When Dana stepped off that stage in our first rehearsal, I had to run to her. I hugged her while sobbing and she hugged me as tight as any mother would and told me it will all be fine. I knew…I KNEW…her children will be ok, no matter what happens.

Every woman who steps foot on the Expressing Motherhood stage does so with the knowledge that she’s exposing her true self and a moment in her life with strangers in seats. Dana’s story is so powerful, I am still drawn to tears while thinking about it.

Dana is doing okay. As alright as she can genuinely be.

She been living with stage 4 breast cancer for quite a while, I’d say she is exceptionally strong. Dana has been on my mind since our last show closed. A dear friend of hers came to see Expressing Motherhood in Burbank and filled me in on Dana’s current health status.

She needs prayers. Her children need prayers. Women everywhere who are fighting this thing they call breast cancer need prayers.

This is the list of women I know…or knew with breast cancer:
Mom. Susan, Sharon, Grandma, Carrie, Patty, Terrie, Santa, Terry, Jana, Gail, Phyllis, Theresa……Dana.

Way too many.

I will continue to raise money for this disease, because I can. Because I truly do believe cancer will one day be a ‘chronic disease’ we treat but live with. October is only one of the twelve months I consider “Breast Cancer Awareness Month.”

And to all the Dana Bell’s I know….keep fighting the good fight. We are all behind you.