“We’re all in this together. And if you’re weak and you can’t fight anymore because you get to that point in this world, well then the rest of us are gonna pick you up and we’re gonna do it for you….and we’re gonna do this until we figure it out” – Erin Remme
We all have those special people that touch our lives, forever change how we look at the world and make us a better person simply by knowing them. Sometimes we are fortunate to have had them in our lives from the start. Other times our paths may only have just briefly crossed, but either way they change us and for the better. To lose that special person is a special kind of heartbreak.
Cancer is a thief. I would hear Erin say that and see all that it was taking from her and her beautiful, young family. And like all who have been victim of this terrible disease, it is simply wrong and is anything but fair. But if there is one thing that Erin showed us, it was to not just sit on the sidelines and passively accept what life throws your way. Not only did she fight for her life, for her babies, family, and friends – but she fought for all with Stage 4 Metastatic Breast Cancer. And that my friends is power. We all felt it, how could you not…we were literally witnessing someone changing the world for the better. And we were lucky enough to be along for the ride and have our own little worlds changed alongside it.
There are countless lessons you can take from seeing someone intentionally choose each day to live life to the fullest, choosing love, advocacy, strength and faith regardless of the fear or sadness that no doubt exists alongside it all. But one lesson and approach to life that Erin embodied that keeps lingering on my mind is – I’m not done yet.
These four words don’t just represent the INDY award Erin received during her courageous fight, but they also represent how she lived her life. She packed in more in those nearly four years since her diagnosis than some would in a lifetime. To change course and boldly take a path you didn’t envision yourself taking, takes courage. Whether it was proudly watching her kids play their sports, savoring time at the lake with her family and friends or advocating for research and funding to help make her own daughter’s future world a better one, you could see in the twinkle of her eyes, the light of her smile and hear in the confidence in her voice, that she wasn’t done yet.
Even if its not something as drastic as cancer, life can throw us all off course sometimes, making us feel a little lost as we learn how to navigate new paths. But that does not mean we stop fighting and give up. Erin showed us how to not only boldly walk down an unexpected path, but to embrace it and lead the way. So for however long we’re blessed with our own health and time…..We’re not done yet.
We’re not done fighting to help find a cure for this disease and we’re not done bravely walking our own paths, finding our own truths, wherever they may take us. She taught us there is always hope and there is always a plan. To live this out in the big and everyday moments in each of our lives is to keep her spirit alive. And that’s just what this world needs.