CROWNED EDITION: MEET LATRESE
November 2012, my life had changed forever. I remember lying in a hospital bed just out of surgery and the doctor coming in the room telling me I have stage four cancer. I instantly felt numb, and all I could think about is my ten-month-old and three-year-old son at the time. I didn’t want them to be without a mother. I battle a rare sickness Neuroendocrine cancer that most people don’t see or understand. Some people find out that they are terminally ill and just automatically give up on life. They stop showing up to family functions, school events, or activities they love. They think what is the point of me doing these things, I won't be around much longer. See for me though I looked at it as well since I was given six months to five years to live that I was going to live my life to the fullest. As a 23-year-old female my life that meant for me “Turning Up”. I wanted to be far from the reality of Latrese the WIFE, MOTHER, DAUGHTER, SISTER, SOLDIER, and FRIEND who has cancer. One morning I woke up at my best friend house after a crazy night of partying and I looked at her and said: “I can’t keep living like this.” See in the mist of all that was going on in my life I found God. Yet, I questioned myself and Him a lot of the time that if I didn’t have cancer would I have ever given my life to Him. Why me? Why did I have to lose my dream of being in the Army for 20years because of this cancer? It’s hard for me to know how much God truly loved me but also have to battle my mind about having this cancer and not being healed. When people look at me they don’t see the pain I am experiencing. They just see a normal 28-year-old female because of my ability to push through my sickness. It took me a while to realize that this journey I am going through is not mine alone. To get through this battle I needed God in my life more than ever. Every morning I wake up and I thank the Lord for blessing me with the gift of life. I get up and get my kids ready for school no matter how bad I feel. Being a mom is such an amazing blessing and seeing their faces give me an amazing boost to my attitude. They make it effortless for me to continue to push through my sickness. The one thing that I have realized since being sick is that I was not as appreciative of my good health until I got ill. So every day no matter how bad I feel, I look at things from a positive perspective. I am alive and know that I am lucky to see another day because there is someone somewhere who did not get to wake up. There is someone’s family somewhere mourning the loss of their loved one. So I get up and smile knowing that there is nothing but memories to be made today.
"So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while. 1 Peter 1:6 NLT