After all this time, it’s still about control.  Making decisions, being your own advocate and at the same time, having some one close to you, some one you trust to make decisions if it’s necessary, to be by your side.  Taking control of your treatment and having a say in what the treatment will accomplish and what’s the goal at the end of the line?

That’s the message that came through loud and clear today as I listened to two cancer patients talk about being a cancer patient.  Both are breast cancer survivors.  Both had come through long, hard treatments that included surgery, chemotherapy and radiation.  One was much farther down the survivor trail than the other but they both agreed that learning to take control of their disease and its path was so important.  They said it gave them the mental toughness they needed to keep going.

We all agreed that when the diagnosis is made, the first thing that falls away is control.  “YOU have cancer” robs a person of their strength to stand up to this disease.  Slowly, with knowledge of what you have, how to treat it and taking an aggressive approach to treating it, brings back that control.

Both of these women are strong again.  They give of themselves to others who are in the battle now.  They have been warriors.  They are passing along their knowledge of what it takes to fight and they start with lesson number one: staying in control.

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