Staring Down Cancer

A great trip to Washington DC

Vice President Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden pose with Noreen Fraser and Michelle McBride at a breast cancer awareness month reception in the library of the Naval Observatory Residence in Washington, D.C..

Vice President Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden pose with Noreen Fraser and Michelle McBride at a breast cancer awareness month reception in the library of the Naval Observatory Residence in Washington, D.C..  (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

It was a whirlwind of a week in Washington, D.C. I was invited to the home of Vice President Joe Biden and his wife Dr. Jill Biden.

I received the invitation via email, and when I saw the words that said, "Invitation from the office of the Vice President," I almost deleted it, thinking it must be spam.

Thank God I opened it. They were having a party to honor a select list of women living with breast cancer.  Me?  Are you kidding?  The most wonderful part of the invitation was that breast cancer survivors could bring a caretaker or an individual who has been critical to "lifting you up" during this time of need and being there for you in any and every way.  

I chose my dear friend Michelle McBride, who is the president of my foundation. She works tirelessly for our cause and cares so deeply about my health.

Michelle is an outstanding champion and advocate for those of us who are struggling with this disease. Our mission is two-fold:  Early detection and research for women's cancers, so that we can find less toxic drugs and give survivors a better quality of life.  We want cancer to become nothing more than a chronic disease that can be managed.

That is why the trip to Washington, D.C. was so important.  Breast cancer is a passion for the Bidens.  Jill, in particular, has put so much time and money into helping those in treatment.  She is responsible for the Biden Breast Health Initiative in Delaware, and she has written a book for pre-teen girls that talks about breast health, cancer prevention and lifestyle risks that need to be addressed.

She is an awesome woman. Meeting the Bidens can help me meet my Foundation's goals.

I also met with Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, who is a breast cancer survivor.  We are in talks about new legislation and how I might be helpful as an advocate.  There are committees and money available in terms of directing it to specific research projects.

I hope that 2014 will be a big year for me. I want to help so many women. This disease is horrendous. I hate the side effects I live with and the medication I am on, but I keep pushing forward, trying to make a difference.  

I was never a sitter.  I am a doer.  I hope those who are reading this blog will support me.  

Finally:  Happy birthday, Michelle!

Noreen Fraser is living with Stage IV metastatic breast cancer. She is the Founder and CEO of the Noreen Fraser Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to funding groundbreaking women's cancer research. To stay in touch with Noreen, please 'LIKE' The Noreen Fraser Foundation on Facebook and follow her on Twitter.  Noreen can be contacted via email at noreen@noreenfraserfoundation.org.