Camilla – Sacramento, CA

July 2016

Camilla was diagnosed with stage II breast cancer at age 33.  She shares the many lessons she’s learned throughout her journey below.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself that has nothing to do with cancer.

I went skydiving when I was 19 years old. 😉

What brought you hope as you faced cancer?

My faith, my 4 year old son, my partner, my family, my friends, The Young Survival Coalition, and your awesome team- Hope Scarves…along with everyone I’ve encountered who’s shared their story of hope, love, faith and inspiration.

How do you live life over cancer?

I focus on living. I look around at what’s in front of me and thank God for giving me the strength to live a new day, each day. I take it day by day, moment by moment and learn to appreciate everyone and everything around me. I do my best to take care of my body, my health, my spirit and my soul. The more “good-ness” I feed it, the better…and the more strength I give to my good cells so we can overcome the bad ones, so to speak. 😉

How did you become connected with Hope Scarves? Whether you received, sent or donated a Hope Scarf, what did this experience mean to you?

Someone from the YSC group mentioned the available resources out there for breast cancer patients. As I searched online, I found Hope Scarves and learned about the Hope Scarf story and mission. When I provided my basic info to your team, I thought- ok, we’ll see what happens next. A few weeks later, my Chemo started and I forgot all about my request for a scarf. My hair began to shed quickly and things “got real” and grief kicked in. Then, one day I found this big envelope in my mail and like a little kid. I couldn’t wait to open it. Once I read the letter, I cried. For that moment, I felt whole again. I felt love, kindness and gratitude (I’m crying right now just thinking about it). Because when all is said and done, it’s the little things in life that counts and goes a long way. That’s what this experience meant to me. 😉

What do you wish other people knew about Hope Scarves?

That your mission is priceless. You truly give hope and shed light at times of darkness through a simple gift and a simple message- that to me, made a world of a difference. Thank you…

What would you tell someone who is thinking about sending a Hope Scarf to a friend facing cancer?

Do it with all your heart.

What is one of your dreams or goals for the future?

To pay this forward and help someone else in need.

What is your favorite inspirational quote?

C’est La Vie (Such as life).

If your friends or family had to describe you in a couple of words, what would those be?

Compassionate and courageous.

Please share something you learned facing cancer.

I learned (and am still learning) that it is ok to ask for help. Especially when everything feels like it’s caving in on you.

I learned to work on bettering my relationship with God.

I learned to let go of petty things that take up unnecessary energy.

I learned to be more grateful.

I learned to be wise with my energy.

I learned that many loved ones really do care and want to help but have the hardest time showing it or don’t know how to help someone with cancer.

I learned how important love is and the impact it has on this fight.

I learned that this process and experience greatly affects me mentally and emotionally- that on those days I feel like dying and giving up- I tell myself over and over again that I can’t give up and that I HAVE TO get through this and that I have to keep fighting…so don’t give up…

My list can go on…

In essence, I also learned that I still have so much more to learn about myself, everything, and everyone around me…😉