Connie Karol

Connie believes that being a Warrior is an opportunity to help others; to empower them to embrace their situation and find their strength to fight. She found that strength in many places—Pink Tie Friends, an angel who appeared just at the moments she needed her most, and through the power of laughter.

The day she was diagnosed, she cried and cried, but then something funny happened to her and she was able to laugh—hysterically in fact. From that day forward, laughter becomes her secret weapon.

In the days that followed her diagnosis, she joined Pink Tie Friends, surrounding herself with amazing women of courage and strength, all who while fighting their own breast cancer battles. They joined together to raise funds to help other breast cancer patients not as fortunate as themselves.

And then there was her angel, someone her doctor told her she should call, but never did. A chance meeting brought them together and from that day forward she was there for Connie. She called the day Connie lost her hair, and again the day she was sitting in her car crying because her feet hurt so badly she didn’t know if she could walk into work. And when she called again the day Connie left her pocketbook at the grocery store, she became known as Connie͛s Angel.

“Breast cancer was a reawakening. Hearing those words, ‘you have breast cancer’ stopped me dead in my tracks. Suddenly so many worries/concerns no longer seemed important. It was a time of reflection, reprioritizing, letting go. Trusting in God’s plan.”

Connie has been married to her childhood sweetheart for 43 years. They have two sons. The younger son had just started high school when she was diagnosed. The older son was working and going to college in Hawaii.

Her mother who lived in Stuart at the time was her lifeline.

Connie also received many gestures of kindness, caring and love – coworkers who arranged house cleaning during her treatments, cards of encouragement and meals from family, friends, and neighbors; an aunt from Missouri who arranged a ͞hat͟ shower when she started losing her hair. She received hats and scarves from all over the country, even a hat one young cousin made from her doll blanket!

“It’s doable. Not always easy but with fortitude and resilience, you can get through it. It is not a death sentence as I thought when I heard the word cancer. My doctor told me the next nine months would be miserable but then I would have a new life. What a beautiful life it is! (And it wasn͛t so miserable.)”

 

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