GLORIA BUIE, SURVIVOR
Jun 11, 2020
At the BCRFA, we value stories. From words of inspiration from survivors to stories from the research labs, we’re proud to share the experiences of those who are active in the fight against breast cancer.
This week, we’re kicking off a new series called “Spotlight On,” which explores the stories of those who have had firsthand experiences with breast cancer. From patients and survivors, to volunteers and more, we’re excited to begin offering you new perspectives on what it’s like to join the fight against breast cancer in our state.
This month, we sat down with Gloria Buie, a breast cancer survivor from Sylacauga, to learn more about her story.
TELL US ABOUT YOU!
I’m a mother of four, a grandmother of one, and I’ve worked at a job that I love with Alabama
Power Company for over 30 years. I’m a member of Greater New Hope Baptist Church in Sylacauga. Recently, I’ve also taken up sewing. Making masks during the pandemic has brought a real sense of pleasure and purpose for me. I have a passion for helping others, especially women – a passion for mentoring and motivating. I love to travel, read and spend time with family and friends.
I’m also proud to be both a student and a teacher. I’m a certified yoga teacher, as well as a Zumba instructor, which I got certified for during my last round of chemo. These platforms allow me to pursue my passion for mentoring and motivating women.
WHAT’S YOUR CANCER STORY?
I was diagnosed on 9/11 – of all days. I couldn’t believe that was the day I got the call from my doctor. It was very devastating at first. When you hear that word, “cancer,” you always think the worst. But I’m a strong believer in my faith, and I decided to go on the journey with a positive attitude.
Of course there were highs and lows on the journey – when I was about to start chemo, I had prepared myself and was ready to go, only to be told that I wasn’t ready yet. That was hard. I also thought I’d be able to work, but I couldn’t – it was just too draining. But thankfully, my job allowed me the time to take care of myself. And things got better.
Throughout that time, I knew I had so much to live for. So much on this earth that God had for me. That was my attitude as I went through it all. I had an amazing support system in my family, my friends, and an awesome doctor and medical team. I also surrounded myself with a lot of good people praying and rooting for me. With them, and with God, I knew I’d be able to get through it, get over it and get on with my life.
HOW DID YOU BECOME INVOLVED WITH THE BCRFA?
I was asked to be involved with the You Are Beautiful Luncheon and Fashion Show earlier this year. Being part of that – knowing that I wanted to work in that community for breast cancer research and fundraising – was just amazing.
After that, I knew I wanted to be part of the mission. That group of women was just phenomenal. We gelled! I knew that was the kind of space and atmosphere I wanted to be in.
WHAT’S YOUR ONE-SENTENCE INSPIRATION?
My one sentence inspiration is: “Just get through the process.”
As someone affected by breast cancer, you have to understand that it’s all about getting through the process. Settling into it and understanding that not everyone’s journey is the same. You’ll have a unique testimony. After you get through it, you have an obligation to fundraise, to speak and to advocate for others, just like people did for you.
I know that everything happens for a reason. We’re all going to go through something – we just have to remember to let God’s light shine through us during it. I like to say, “Let it Glo,” to remind myself to let that light shine through, no matter the circumstance.
I truly hope to be an example for the next person that will go through the same things I did. Because if I can get through it: so can you.
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