Everyone who goes through chemo deserves a parade
Anyone who has been diagnosed with cancer or watched a loved one go through it knows just how awful it can be. There are the emotional ups and downs as reality of this disease sets in — to say nothing of the physical toll it takes. When a Cincinnati woman was diagnosed with stage two breast cancer in January, she knew she had a difficult road ahead of her. But she is a fighter and had one very important thing in her favor – a huge support system who was there with her every step of the way.
Amy Kleiner has been through a lot this year. After her initial diagnosis, Amy had a mastectomy then 20 brutal chemotherapy treatments. Her best friend and neighbor, Tera Kiser, was one of many by her side along the way. And Kiser had something up her sleeve to help her brave friend celebrate the end of chemo this August — a parade of family and friends there to welcome her home.
“Amy and I met about 10 years ago,” Kiser tells Scary Mommy. “We live in the same neighborhood our daughters are the same age so my daughter, Hope, and I stopped to play with them one day. We were pretty much inseparable after that.”
Kiser planned for weeks to make sure Kleiner had the welcome home she deserved. She created a secret Facebook group and alerted neighbors and friends about the parade. They made signs and waved balloons and when Kleiner walked out of her house to go to her final chemo treatment, everyone was waiting.
“When I opened my garage door and saw everybody I was just completely astonished,” Kleiner tells TODAY. “The fact that I got to go and hug every single person out there and tell them thank you — I could have stayed out there all day.”
Kiser tells us the huge crowd standing by her side is “a true testament to the selfless and caring person that she is. Seeing how many gathered around for her that day to celebrate, she’s a one of a kind!”
Kiser also had each person release a balloon to symbolize the end of her chemo, saving the last four for Amy and her family.
Knowing she had people who love and support her meant everything Kleiner tells Scary Mommy. “Tera has been with me since the beginning of the diagnosis. She organized a meal train, helped with my daughter, really anything she could to take some of the extras off of my husband’s shoulders.”
Friendship is about showing up when it matters most and letting the other person know you will be there through the good times and the bad. It’s clear these two will be friends for a lifetime.
“Amy has been such a trooper through her surgery, her chemotherapy and now she’s getting ready to start her radiation treatments,” Kiser tells Scary Mommy. “She’s never complained, not one time! She’s doing great and ready to put this chapter behind her and get on with life. Which I have no doubt that she will do!”