|Vondakay Lofley speaks at the Relay for Life last July. She is a cancer survivor of 24 years.|
My name is Vondakay Lofley. I live in Elmo. I was first diagnosed with cancer when I was 19 years old, and I had the first tumor taken off my ovary. I was going to college in Logan. It was a very scary thing but now I am 43 years old and have had 39 tumors removed from all parts of my body.
We learned that the kind of cancer I have is called whelms tumor and it starts on your kidneys. I am still dealing with it today. It is not a cancer the doctors can take away but I am not one to let it get the best of me.
When asked to do this I thought? How can I make this different from all the ones before that were so good? Each story has inspired me, I hope, to do the same.
I decided to have my friends write something about me since they are a big part of my life and then I will follow up at the end.
"I pray that all will go well the rest of your life. You are one who can win and will win many battles in your life keep up your great attitude," Linda.
"You have an extremely positive attitude and a love for life. You are an inspiration to me," Monica.
"You have a strong heart and a great personality and you never have let the cancer run our family. Seems like you have always run the cancer. Keep up the good work Mom," Kristia.
"Way to go! Keep that positive attitude that you have. With the bouts of cancer you have overcome through the years, you have proved nothing can keep you down. Stay happy and positive," Jennine.
"I am very proud of you beating the odds with cancer. It is not an easy thing to do. You mean a lot to me," love, Fay.
"You are such a wonderful lady. I wish that I had the strength and positive attitude like you do. You mean a great deal to me and I know that you can overcome anything you have proved that and I love you," Kachae'.
"Even cancer, it never held you back~keep enjoying every day to the fullest," your best friend, Debbi.
"Pal! I hope you know how much I appreciate and love you. No one has ever been a best friend to me as you. The trips to Salt Lake to my house to take care of me when you had kidney stones but said nothing because you had come to take care of me. Now that spells out a true friend, we've been together since the beginning of your cancer and I hope I will be here to the end, 'But humÃ¯Â¿Â½ I don't know you are one tough cookie!'"Ã¯Â¿Â½ love you always, your pal, Peggy.
"Vonda you know you are like the energizer bunny no matter what life throws in your way you keep going and going and going. Hang in there and keep that smile," love Kim.
Now you can understand why I can never let this cancer disease keep me down I have so many special friends and my family that I live for each day. Some days I can certainly say have been better.
We still struggle with the financial part of cancer. Seems you have a bill from every doctor and hospital. My father used to tell me,"If a doctor walks past and looks towards your door you are getting a bill!"
Then we would laugh. Sometimes when I go over our bills I think it is true.
I think of my kids and how proud of them I am. My daughter Kristia has two little boys that make me want to live everyday. I also have two sons in the military, Sgt. Justin Lofley in Provo and Sgt. Larry RyDale Rogers in Iraq. Knowing what they are doing, I can look at my life and know that I can live on because of the freedom we have.
You know I think cancer is kind of like being in a war and we have to dodge the bullets as they come. I know that I can over come and win the "Tag" game with cancer.
I spoke at the Relay for Life last year. That was a great experience for me and I hope that I inspired others to live as I have and just say "Tag You're it" to cancer and live long and healthy lives.
All my love goes to my family and friends that keep me going everyday and thank you for the help and support. I am fortunate to have a loving husband and family that love and support me no matter the cost or how many trips for treatments or check ups.
That is why I have stayed so positive. I think we all need a support system. To the many people that have cancer or have had cancer in the past remember just say to cancer "Tag you're it."
You can email me at Vondakay@etv.net if you need support or just someone to listen to you, please write to me.
I hope to see you at this years Relay for Life.
May all my friends dealing with cancer live for today and let tomorrow come as it may.