Celebrate My Life

Marti Davis

So, we all know that a photo is worth a thousand words, but what about those photos that mark a pivotal point in our lives?

This is that photo for me:
Marti Davis

I woke that morning ready to chill and waiting for my hair to get that perfect curl. School had just started and I was ready to really get focused and just live my life. Maybe I would post a little more on Instagram or even try to be a little more adventurous, or I guess “Get Busy Living”. The worst part about that weekend is that I can’t even remember what happened before that Sunday. What was I doing? What was I thinking about? Why was I holding an Isley Brothers Vinyl Record? It was the start of my spring break I was going to hang with my best friend Cassandra to go over some fashion ideas and maybe even our other friend Michelle. It was also the week of my mom’s best friend’s birthday and my best friend’s mom’s birthday. (A lot of Tammy’s born that week). I officially hate the idea of Spring Break. It was tarnished by the fact that I was in a hospital bed for pretty much all of it, getting diagnosed with a blood cancer, CML. It’s this one photo, this one moment in time when I didn’t have cancer, I didn’t need to take any drugs or have a team of doctors. My life was simple. I was single and okay with it; except there was still that one guy that I had a little thing for in the back of my head, but lets be honest, that became a Biz Markie song "Just a friend."

78 weeks ago, I was just "Charlie JoAnn," loving fashion, creating new and amazing pieces of art through clothing and being carefree. I could drink what I wanted, stay up late and not be tired, play in contact sports and be independent (somewhat).

I have lost friends and gained some in the process. I have even lost family members who just couldn't deal, which I could understand. My family has been through a lot. Cancer has come through my family like a mass murderer and taken away the people we love most and look to for the most guidance in life. My Aunt Sandra was and still is one of the greatest women in my life. Cancer took her husband away, my Uncle Mike, while she was still battling the beast. I my heart, cancer wasn't the ending to her book. A broken heart was the last chapter in the book titled "Jesus Never Fails" by Aunt Sandra.

I will not die of cancer. I will die of a broken heart. Because that means that I had a great love in life and that I found my other half or as some would say my "Soul Mate." I'll die when I'm good and ready. Cancer will not be the last chapter in my book, it will not be the last photo in my lifetime, and it will not make me weak. 

Today, I am still "Charlie JoAnn." The only difference is my voice is louder and the beat of my drum is just a little bit crazier.

About Marti: Marti is a vibrant young adult pursuing her degree in Fashion Design. She is also working in the Sports Apparel industry and hopes to one day design her own line. Marti was diagnosed with CML at the age of 21. Today, she and her mother, Tamara, serve as the NCMLS California State Representatives and are building CML Connection groups in their state. This is her story in her own words. 

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