By Maryann Makekau


Last month, I shared my imaginary vision for awareness billboards along highways nationwide. Billboards with colorful, bold, obvious and to-the-point messages that spark people to get fired up and stay fired up, beyond October; “Eternal-Pink until it’s just a color—not a disease!” I’ve been reflecting more on those imaginary billboards over the last couple of days.

My reflection was sparked by watching a documentary on cancer. I learned that President Nixon had declared a “war on cancer” back in 1971. I immediately thought, “I WANT THE WAR ON CANCER TO BE OVER!” I want billboards that say “isn’t it time to end the war on cancer?” Billboards that say, “STOP, LOOK, and LISTEN—isn’t a 30-year war long enough?”

I felt my emotions surge again in receiving an email from a young survivor who’s facing a recurrence, less than one year after completing treatment for triple negative breast cancer. In its wake, the first battle took her home due to uninsured medical expenses. It took her breasts and knocked her off her feet. But it didn’t take her faith, her family, or her determination! She is exemplary of hope; the power of hope says “YES,” when odds say “no.”

I have no doubt that she will maintain her exemplary faith as the battle begins…again. Her recurrence makes me want to shout even louder for an end to the war on cancer. Certainly, there are many complicated pieces that are beyond a simple billboard. Yet, when I look around there are so many things that appear complicated. Then suddenly, when the dots connect, it’s so painfully obvious that one would wonder how it could have been missed in the first place. I’m hanging onto Exemplary Hope—to end the war on cancer. That somewhere, somehow, someday, there will be a painfully obvious discovery that will leave us all saying, “why did it take so long?” That is a day I continually pray for, as I sit now praying for my young friend entering the battle yet again.



Maryann Makekau, Author & Inspirational Speaker

Founder of Hope Matters Productions






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