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In Honor and Memory of My Beautiful Mom

Eric Perlman

Eric Perlman


Twenty-five years ago; a quarter of a century ago; a lifetime ago, ovarian cancer took my beautiful mother.

To this day, it doesn't seem real. She doesn't seem real. I was four-years-old when Jackie Perlman died. I still do not know or understand how to deal with the pain that has followed me since 1993. I am embarrassed to discuss my feelings with friends and even family. Due to my very few memories, my thoughts do not recollect happy times with her. I am only able to remind myself of the things she has missed and the things she will miss.

My mom and I never had the chance to make memories. I never knew what it is like to tell her that I got an A on a test, or threw a touchdown pass, or met a girl. I will never have her around to to talk about ring shopping, discuss our wedding dance, or exclaim about grandchildren.

I am pissed. I am sad. I cry. I can't get over it. I cannot explain how impossible it is to grasp the feelings that I can never understand.

This 5k is the highlight of my year; it is the only real connection I have with my mom. I don't have many photos, and I don't have much video footage - I was young, and she was sick. What I do have, though, is the ability to go out at least once a year and do something, anything, in her memory. I don't want her to be forgotten, but I am too scared to make this event public to friends and family. I hate that, but I embrace it.

I am so grateful for this event. It connects me with my mom and allows me to feel close to her. I am far from a religious person, so this event is quite cathartic.

Beyond my selfish reasons for running/walking, I hope to one day use this platform to raise awareness. Ovarian cancer is so much more prevalent than we think. The disease is incredibly difficult to detect, and its mortality rate is amplified by the inability to properly find and treat at an early stage. The irony? Even conducting tests in attempts to conquer early detection can be detrimental to women's health.

What's the solution? We need to learn more about this terrible illness; we need to fund research; we need to fund studies; we need to promote public awareness; we need to teach girls and women about the common symptoms; we need to end it!

I don't want this disease to take any more moms, sisters, nieces, girlfriends, fiancés, grandmothers, granddaughters, friends, cousins, or aunts.

I am sure not many people will read this post, and I am far too scared to share it myself, but I still like to get this out on paper - I write much better than I speak. I miss my mom more and more as the days, weeks, months, and years pass. I wish she was here. I wish I could laugh with her, and cry with her, and call her, and ignore her, and embarrass her, and be embarrassed by her. But I can't.

What I can do is raise awareness and run/walk in her honor.

I hope to help just one person better understand the disease, and I hope to help just one person better appreciate his or her loved one that much more.

Thank you for reading.

Mom... I love you.


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