The artwork provided by her granddaughter above (©2010 PharmKid) contains a subliminal message about the significance of today's birthday. I will have the pleasure of delivering the original work of the artist to the birthday girl this weekend.
For those of you who don't know PharmMom, she's nothing short of incredible having raised my sister, then deciding when we were in elementary school that she wanted to serve the greater good as a registered nurse, earning an AA degree while she also worked nights in the ER.
She closed the books on a three decade career in nursing a couple of years ago and retired with my stiefvater to Santa Fe, Mew Mexico. She worked in emergency medicine, urology, cardiac intensive care, and completed her career working in clinical trials coordination for patients with HIV/AIDS. She continues to do health screening in her new community for the Lion's Club and other organizations.
Being a parent now give me even more appreciation for how hard this must've been for her to be so dedicated to her patients and be a great Mom, involved in our activities and pushing us academically.
Mom's also a 26-year breast cancer survivor and her example - and personal cancer pharmacology experience - led me to pursue my career in cancer research. Much of what I am today is due to her example of strength and persistence.
So, Happy Birthday, Mom! I can't wait to see you!