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Sending Rainbows

I was twenty-six when I met Anita, who was a breast cancer survivor. She had a daughter the same age as mine, a miracle baby born after aggressive chemotherapy treatments that normally rob women of any hope for children. We were also the same age, something I hadn’t expected. Because of the cancer, I’d assumed Anita was older than I was, not that she looked older.

We soon became friends, mostly talking about our daughters or decorating or clothes. I was frequently overwhelmed with being a stay-at-home mom, living far away from my extended family. Anita always reminded me to be grateful I was alive to raise my children. Anita’s reminders helped me so much during the sleepless nights and tired days of raising a baby and a toddler.

We both wondered about the possibility of death and whether there really is a life after death. During this time, Anita lost two of her good friends—the only other women in the state who were in their twenties and had breast cancer. Of co…

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