The funeral for Diem Brown was yesterday and from the information that was given out to the media, it sounded like it was a powerful and emotional ceremony. Because isn’t that what funerals are ultimately about? Celebrating life? I think when we aren’t in the thick of things or personally affected by the death of a loved one, we tend to view someone else’s passing as a time to gather with those closest to you and reflect on the life of the departed. Yes, it can be emotional but if it has not happened to us directly, it doesn’t hold the same weight. Although I did not know Diem Brown, her fight and passing has made a forever impression on me.
I have been a fan of the Challenge shows for years and I especially look forward to seeing her compete because not only was she fierce, but she was a true fighter in more ways than one. I remember the first season when viewers were first introduced to Diem Brown. A beautiful, blonde, athletic girl with legs for days, telling her challenge partner about her battle with ovarian cancer. She was in her twenties at the time and it seemed so unheard of that someone her age would develop such a horrific disease. Time passed and so did the challenge episodes, each with a larger glimpse into the ongoing battle that Diem was experiencing. Probably the most memorable moments in the show’s history was when her castmate and then boyfriend, CT, told her to take off her wig that hid the regrowth of her chemotherapy. Diem, hesitant to relieve herself of her security blanket at first, eventually conceded and stripped herself of the long glowing locks that surrounded her face. That moment, for me, took back the curtains and revealed her true personal struggle with the disease. Cancer not only stolen her health and some key moments in her life (like carrying children) but her identity as well. Though in that moment, she was ready to embrace a new one and it was amazing to see it unfold.
Unfortunately for Diem, cancer struck a third time late this summer. I mean honestly, this girl couldn’t catch a break. From the information that was being released, the cancer had taken over her body and it would be weeks or even days that Diem would have left to live. Although this was extremely heartbreaking, it was truly amazing to read her tweets and posts about never giving in and fighting no matter what. This young 32 year old woman was and will always be a true definition of a warrior. Not because she went down fighting but no matter what, she smiled, she remained strong, and made those around her believe in what she was fighting for. We can all hope for a legacy like Diem’s to leave behind. Grace, hope, and an overall love for life. Cancer is an absolutely horrific disease but I hope Diem’s resilience inspires others going through the same to keep fighting no matter what! Her life has inspired me to reevaluate what I stress about and if it really truly matters because life is short to not live it to the fullest.