To help or to hide….

We all handle a cancer diagnosis differently.  Do we share in this experience or do we keep our doors closed and make it a private affair?

Leroy made the choice to share his daily life while living with cancer because he truly believed he could help others who were going through the ups and downs of the disease.  His blog not only talked about treatment and care but how he felt his life was impacted after his diagnosis.

His was a public account of a terminal diagnosis and it was open and honest and at times, even heartbreaking.

Then there are those who don’t talk about their cancer.  If they’re lucky enough to survive their disease, that’s when they sometimes step out of the shadows to make a difference.

I’ve met so many cancer survivors at the Kimmel Cancer Center who have taken their experience and turned it into a crusade to help others.  Some help other patients who are currently going through treatment.  Who better to take the hand of a patient than some one who has walked that path?

Other survivors raise money for research.  They have an appreciation for all the hard work that went into the time spent at the lab bench: the work ultimately turning into new and aggressive treatments that may have saved their lives.  Fundraising is the way they give back.

And sometimes it’s left to the care givers to give back.  We walk, we run, we swim, and we ride bikes to fund raise.  We talk to newly appointed caregivers who never expected to become care givers in the first place, just so they know we were in that spot once too.

What we have here is another piece of the complicated world of cancer; Always challenging who we were, who we are and who we’ll become.





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