WON Landing Page OCT 2022

Thinking about fishing — even when times were tough

She lay on the couch in her living room, scarf around her head, eyes sunken, looking gray as a cloudy day. “As soon as I get well, we’re going fishing again,” said my friend Nancy. She’d had chemo treatment # 8 or #9 the day before this one. We were both thinking about fishing, though — even though when times were tough.

I didn’t stay long, but promised her that as soon possible, we’d put on our waders and head back to her favorite fishing hole at nearby Bennett Spring.

Nancy and Barb copyThinking about fishing … and it happened

It’s almost been a year now since that glorious day in the little honey hole at Bennett, when Nancy and I stepped in, cast and simultaneously caught our first fish of the day … the first fish of her remission!

And, now, with October being the 25th Annual Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I can’t help but think that the thought of being able to fish again inspired Nancy to get better. It’s not about catching a beautiful rainbow lunker so much – although trout with lemon and butter in a foil packet on the grill is delicious. It’s more about being outdoors and standing there in a stream that reminds you of life and its constant changes.

Or not … somedays, it’s about forgetting about life and going into the healing zone as you concentrate on whether the fish are going to like that midge or black ant.

For whatever reason, just know that it’s never too late to learn to fish. Or, that it’s never too late in the season to fish – just put on another layer or two under your waders. And, that if you know a woman who would benefit from a Casting from Recovery Retreat, then get her hooked up with it and others that promote healing the mind and the body through nature.


  • About Barbara Baird

    Publisher/Editor Barbara Baird is a freelance writer in hunting, shooting and outdoor markets. Her bylines are found at several top hunting and shooting publications. She also is a travel writer, and you can follow her at https://www.ozarkian.com.


The Conversation

  • Women's Outdoor News says: October 6, 2009 at 6:34 pm


    Nancy is a dear friend and a survivor. Thank you for all you do to promote the WON.

  • Georgette Wood says: October 6, 2009 at 5:35 pm

    Thank you for sharing this wonderful story with us. I’m glad to hear that there are so many wonderful people in our world that are helping support the Breast Cancer Foundation; and to help find a Cure. It’s so exciting to see a lot of pink in the stores expecially in the sports world from hunting to fishing and even our professional football players aren’t afraid to wear a little pink. My grandmother was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in January 2001 and she has past away now. I’m very thankful for all the support that we have out there and the friends you meet everyday that are struggling with this disease. It’s so good to hear that your friend Nancy is still fishing with you. I would like to thank everyone out there for their continueing support and whatever you do don’t give up HOPE!!!!

  • Tammy Ballew says: October 2, 2009 at 6:45 am

    Barb, thanks for sharing that story with us. That was incredible. If that doesn’t make us all wake up and smell the roses, I don’t know what would.