By: FreeToBreathe – November 05 2014

Forever Changed by Love and Lung Cancer

Jessica Evans shares her story about love and lung cancer in the second installment of our Lung Cancer Awareness Month Blog Series.

My story begins as a love story—a short and sweet, funny and witty, beautiful and epic love story that ended too soon for me to bear.

I met Tim Bumbalough in the spring of 2011 and instantly knew he would change my life. He challenged me, he made me a stronger and more secure individual, and I grew to love him more with each passing day. At 31 years young, Tim was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer in the summer of 2012.

Tim was the strongest fighter I have ever known, and we lived out those next 379 days together full of happiness, warmth, laughter and love. I’m a completely different person standing here today because of him and what we went through together.

It seems bittersweet that grief has revealed in me a more centered person, a stronger and more resilient person, and a person that takes advantage of every single day on Earth. Losing him still pains me every day—a deep longing and sadness that most people have never known.

Being a part of the Free to Breathe community allows me to help give back what I can to help others facing lung cancer. I share in this organization’s vision of doubling lung cancer survival by 2022. It gives me a small sliver of peace and hope that I can make a difference in someone’s life, so that they never know the kind of pain that I’ve been through.

I’ve always been such an optimist. I never gave up on Tim, even when the facts pointed to a fate I didn’t want to imagine. I’m optimistic that Free To Breathe will make a difference in the lives of lung cancer patients—that we will all make a difference by spreading awareness of how grossly underfunded lung cancer research really is. That together, we’re going to change someone’s life.

Working together to raise awareness and funds is first step – the first step toward giving those patients their happy ending. And everyone loves a happy ending.