Justin Simard has launched a postcard campaign to bring encouragement to his mother Jocelyn Simard, who was diagnosed in September of 2013 with stage four breast cancer.
The family was told Jocelyn might not survive until Christmas. But she did, and she is still in the midst of her cancer battle in Halifax. Justin Simard believes words of kindness and support will help lift his mother's spirits.
"She's doing a lot better. At this point in the game, it is really a mental battle because the cancer is not gone yet. And it's not in remission but she is really starting to kick its butt," said Simard.
"I think so much of just recovering from cancer, fighting cancer at this point, really involves just your mindset."
The P.E.I. man said he was inspired by two stories he heard recently on CBC radio. One involved P.E.I. cancer volunteers and the other was about a Christmas card campaign launched by an Island man to cheer up his parents, who have dementia.
"The two just sort of married together in my brain and I was like, what if people could just send a postcard that just says hang in there or if a cancer survivor could share their personal story," he said.
So Simard sent out the word through social media, asking people to send notes to his mother. He has called his project Hope for Mom.
Dozens of messages have come in so far.
"You know a poem, a personal story of survival or just like, 'Hey you're not alone, we are with you,'" said Simard.
"It has already meant the world to her. She said, 'I got this postcard today. It's crazy and you know it helped because I was feeling really scared and sometimes I don't feel like I can express how scared I am because I feel like I need to be brave for everyone.'"