Here is the letter I was asked to write for the paper. What do you think? Will it help convince the city that this is a worthwhile campaign? Will it inspire others to host a “Pink Swap?”
Thank you, City of Ludington and Pink Christmas Task Force, for making my Christmas memorably “pink” this past year.
I was feeling a little down as the holidays neared because my husband was going to work through Christmas and our extended family, who live in Missouri and Kansas, could not join our two young children and me. Then my mood began to change as store fronts unveiled pink decorations, the downtown trees began to glow with a rosy hue, and Ludington broke out of its wintery haze with a lively buzz about Pink Christmas events. As I watched our town come together, I felt less lonely.
All of a sudden, I was decorating my entryway with pink trees and ornaments. Then I corralled some friends and we joined a huge gaggle of area women at the Cartier Mansion to drink peppermint punch and share endearing stories at the Pink Christmas Brunch.
After reading about Memorial Medical Center’s Women’s Imaging Center in the paper and listening to Dr. Carol Peterson of West Michigan Cancer and Blood Center at the brunch, I was inspired to help raise money for the Pink Christmas campaign in my own home.
I gathered groups of women together on two different evenings for a “Pink Swap.” Each woman was asked to bring a $1-$5 donation for the Women’s Imaging Center (some, on their own generous accord, brought more) and an ornament to exchange. We raised $500! In the spirit of Pink Christmas, women networked with new and known faces, shared stories, and became more aware of the need for digital mammography at our area’s hospital–all of this in the middle of my living room, under the Christmas tree that I was certain would be so lonely just weeks before.
The Pink Christmas campaign changed my holiday in two ways: its events connected me with my town when I felt so far from my own family, and its purpose gave me a new perspective on the hours that my husband, who is a general surgeon, spends at the hospital. He has come home late for dinner on many occasions after spending extra time with a family during the day to talk about a cancer diagnosis–many times, breast cancer. In a small way, I feel like I helped some of the women with whom he comes into contact.
When Christmas came, I was already full of warm memories. And I charged out afterwards to buy discounted pink ornaments for next year! Anyone for a 2009 Pink Swap?