Monday, January 24, 2011

My silver lining

I'm not one of those people who are keen on finding cancer's silver lining. I just have too many physical problems to stick with the "valuable life lesson" storyline.

I don't begrudge anyone else's positive attitude, but I am not usually so happy this happened to me. For me cancer is almost like a car crash, I have pain and scars that are not going away.

Except for one thing. I don't complain about getting old.

Today is my 44th birthday. It's a number that to me symbolizes middle age. No longer am in in my dainty early 40's, I am in my mid 40's. Once upon a time this might have been a milestone I dreaded, fearing it marked a new watershed.

But there are too many women who didn't make it to 44, who would be thrilled to have a birthday banged-up but NED.

Last year I was just getting into the tough part of radiation, and my birthday party had a sad tinge. This year I am away from my husband working, I won't really have much of a celebration but that's ok.

Having a birthday be no big deal is kind of a good thing.


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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Black, White, and Pink

New article on the mystery of racial disparity and breast cancer outcome.

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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Personality + Reconstruction = Quality of Life?

I am really interested to hear what y'all think of this next article.

It says certain personality types have better quality of life after reconstruction.

Apparently there is an up side to being "self-centered!"

Maybe it all made more sense in Italian?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Komen Karma

First of all my disclaimer.

I recently signed up to be a Komen volunteer. I have greatly enjoyed participating in Race for the Cure and other Komen events. Also the charity supports conferences and retreats that have been life changing for me and my fellow breast cancer survivors.

The flip side.

For all the amazing things the organization does, it's seems to have a blind spot to how they look to the public.

I was not as outraged as some over the KFC promotion, but it was not good press, and the commercials kind of made me cringe. There is no real reason having a perfume is wrong, but to me it just kind of feels a little bit off.

Now there is the whole, "For the cure," trademark dispute.

I'm not sure where legally I stand on this. The phrase is kind of associated with Komen, so I could see a legal argument that they have a right to trademark it. But I think there is a larger issue.

For the second time in a year the organization is making headlines for all the wrong reasons. I'm not sure that keeping the phrase is the best thing to do even if it's legally feasible. I think sometimes when you are a charity you have to just decide to take the high road.

For some reason charities can have a blind spot when it comes to dealing with the media. I see this as a reporter time and time again. I am not sure why this is a recurring issue with Komen, it's not like they can not pay for professional PR and media relations staffers. But someone needs to start looking at how their decisions will shape public opinion.

Like it or not, Komen is so big, what they do reflects on all of us. See below.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Behind the scenes as a new breast cancer drug is developed

 I tend to go kind of light on the science articles on here, but this article from the WSJ is fascinating. It tells the tale of how a sea creature became the latest treatment for metastatic breast cancer.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

5 years clear for Kylie Minogue

You had to live in Great Britain or Australia to understand how big a star Kylie Minogue was in 1989. Hannah Montana or maybe Britney Spears would be the only comparison in the USA. It's hard for me to imagine she is in her 40's now, even though she is actually younger than me by a year.

One reason I like how she has handled her breast cancer is that she has spoken about the hard parts of treatment.  Other celebs seem to have such an easy time of it, but Kylie has spoken of her struggles with the side effects of Tamoxifen.

So cheers to Kylie on 5 years cancer free!

Stop and say Hi!

It's been nearly a year I have been working on this blog. When Deb and I started we were both not working and in active treatment. I was about 2 weeks into radiation. I put about 6 hours a day into the site and we had lots of new original articles.

Since then we have both started working full time, and the site has slowed a bit. I still try to post about 3 times a week. I write, or link to what I find interesting. On average about 35 people a day visit. Still enough I think, to make my efforts worthwhile. But if you could stop and post a comment and let me know what is useful, it would be a big help!


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