Where I take a moment from Christmas festivities to reflect on the connection to lung cancer.
This one is easy! When I think of Maids a-Milking, I think of nurses and others who draw blood, start IV’s, give flu shots, and other needles. What an important job! Dealing with people who have bad veins, or are nervous present even more challenges!
My experience as a lung cancer survivor participating in a clinical trial was a lot of needles poked into me at regular intervals. I tried to keep perspective, that this is part of the clinical trial which was keeping me alive and I was tremendously grateful. Now I’m also grateful that I’m not poked two or more times every three weeks.
I’m also very grateful for those who do the poking. In my experience at my cancer centre, they are very skilled and caring. Occasionally it hasn’t hurt much, and a few times I didn’t feel a thing.
Cheers to the people who poke needles into people with skill and care! We are grateful to you. We understand it can be very challenging and even the best don’t always get it right the first or second or third try, but we are grateful that you take your responsibility seriously and do your very best.
Here’s to nurses everywhere!
Here’s to my friend Kathy, the nurse, who called to sing to us and made our Christmas merrier! 😀 Thank you!
Lung cancer is hard, but if you’re open you can meet some outstanding people that you wouldn’t have otherwise. There is grief, to be sure, but it is paired with the good gift and honour of knowing amazing people, the graceful swans or “silver linings of lung cancer”. So grateful! Research is helping more of us live longer. Please donate so more awesome people can live longer!
What is the connection between geese and lung cancer research? Why did “research” immediately spring to mind for the Sixth Day of Giving to Lung Cancer Clinical Trials?
The connection is the goose that laid the golden eggs. That is research. It may not feel like it to some researchers working away in their lab, but it is true!
This is a fabulously exciting time in lung cancer research! New treatments are being approved and people are living longer and better. We are expanding the horizon of the possible.
LUNGevity put out a compelling video last month with stories from people directly affected by lung cancer clinical trials. The link is below. Please take three minutes to watch it. “In the last three years, the FDA has approved more lung cancer treatments than in the last three decades, thanks to clinical trial patients.” The survivor stories are gripping.
I’ve been to just a few of the many conferences where lung cancer research has been presented this year, and it is phenomenal! There is no rush quite like the realization that thousands of brilliant and dedicated people are working hard all over the world to find cures for people affected by cancer.
We are seeing success! The research is working! New treatments for lung cancer are being approved at record rate! People are living longer and better.
We’re not there yet.
Research keeps laying golden eggs. Let’s be generous in our support.
Research works. Research matters. People matter. We need more research.
If you were thinking about giving me a Christmas present this year, or making a tax-deductible end of year donation, please give to lung cancer research here. Thank you.
Click here to see the video It will open up to another page where you can click on the big picture to watch it. You can also see individual stories if you click on the smaller pictures below. It was an honour to be part of this project, because clinical trials matter. Thank you, Linda, Jack, LUNGevity and the whole team. You did a great job!
#12Days of giving to #lungcancer #clinicaltrials #Hope #Care #Team #Support #SilverLinings #Stories #Awareness #Early Detection #Treatment #Research #Survivorship #ThankYou
What do you think of when you think of lung cancer?
Before I was diagnosed, I did not know much beyond the connection between smoking and lung cancer.
For decades, an enormous anti-smoking, lung cancer prevention campaign has been waged. Huge amounts of energy and funding have been invested, but prevention alone is not enough. In spite of prevention efforts, the Canadian Cancer Society estimates that 29,300 Canadians will be diagnosed with lung cancer in 2019. That’s the size of a town.
A town-full of people diagnosed with lung cancer each year.
Clearly a prevention campaign is not enough.
Candid conversations which evaluate the past and examine the present shine light on paths into the future.
It’s time for lung cancer to shift to a well-rounded campaign which dedicates appropriate resourcing to five pillars of lung cancer:
Awareness, Early Detection, Treatment, Research and Survivorship.
When we allocate funding appropriately, we will drive change in lung cancer survivorship.
A town full of people each year! Who will get lung cancer next year?
Anyone can get lung cancer.
The research we fund today might extend your life.
Here’s to all those who bravely share themselves, who share their stories. It can be hard to be vulnerable, to open up and reveal your authentic self, to share difficult details, engage in courageous conversations. It can be hard to go public with your story. Stories matter. Sharing stories shifts culture, drives change, changes the face of lung cancer. Here’s to all who brave those challenges who share their own stories.
Here’s to all who share lung cancer stories, hospital communications teams, writers, photographers, videographers, sound technicians, cancer centre public relations people, reporters, and all kinds of media and behind the scenes folks. Cheers to all those who are supportive and work hard to tell our stories well. Thank you for helping get our stories out, for they are important and need to be heard. You are changing the face of lung cancer, and we are grateful.
Here’s to Lizzie and Kayla, two brave young women who changed the face of lung cancer through sharing themselves, their stories, and fundraising. They knew the importance of sharing their story and the importance of raising funds for research. They were also both lovely people, kind and encouraging, loving and inspiring, deeply missed. What an honour to have known them.
Cheers to all those who join online lung cancer communities, who authentically contribute and genuinely care. That is another kind of brave and important story sharing! Online communities are powerful for support and information, and also fundraising.
I’m involved in several online groups, including one international ALK+ group. ALK is a rare kind of lung cancer. This group has almost 2000 members, and held its second annual summit this past August in Atlanta. Thanks to a generous family, I was able to go and meet some of my ALK family in person, and what a celebration that was! This group is so supportive and encouraging, and tremendously knowledgable. We heard from world leading oncologists at the summit, because this group highly values research. We know our lives may depend on being informed so we can gain access to clinical trials and latest treatment options. We know very well that research is life, and we fundraise for research into our particular kind of lung cancer (as do people with other kinds of cancers). The ALK+ group raised $500,000 USD last month alone, and this month they have secured matching grants up to $200,000 USD.
Research matters. People matter. More research means more survivors. Money = research = life.
Here’s to all who bravely share lung cancer stories! Here’s to all who tell them so well. Thank you. Stories matter.
Thank you for giving generously, for supporting lung cancer research, for opening pathways for more people to live longer and better!
To celebrate stories and survivorship, please give generously to lung cancer research!
All it takes is two. Put two lung cancer survivors together and anything could happen! Get three together and it could be a support group!
There’s nothing like meeting someone you really connect with! It has happened time and time again, the spark, the recognition that someone else gets it, they understand your experience, and they care.
Two survivors together is powerful. There is strength in numbers, and two is enough. Get three and now we’re really cooking! There is no telling what could happen!
Two survivors plus a social worker or psychologist, or any third who is willing to lead, and all kinds of good could come of that. Just ask Alyson and Christine about what happened in Winnipeg less than a year ago. The lung cancer support group they started in Spring of 2019 stood up and clapped with gratitude for them. They just celebrated the holidays with a party this week! What a difference this support group is making! Way to go, Alyson, Christine, Mike, Kelly and team!
It may seem hard to start a support group, but it’s not too hard. People do it all the time. Support groups are best practices and they do good for people around the world. It’s not too hard to start one. There are courses in leading groups, lots of books, experienced leaders, and other resources to learn from. Right in cancer centres all over the world, there are loads of trained, caring people working in psychosocial oncology. It’s not too late to learn. Alyson and Christine asked a lot of questions when they were getting started, and a social worker here in Ottawa helped them connect with teammates in Winnipeg. Reach out! Ask questions! Support groups are best practices, and lots of people could benefit if we had more of them.
We’re very grateful for the lung cancer support group in Ottawa. It was started (in October 2017) by Social Worker Diane Manii and a team here in Ottawa, with Lung Cancer Canada and the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation. It continues with their support and the support of The Ottawa Hospital. There is much generosity toward the Ottawa support group, and strong support within the group. The group has also started reaching out at the Cancer Centre with monthly hope tables (since August 2018) which are greatly appreciated. The group participated in Ottawa Race Weekend (#LungCancerStrong) in May 2019, raising funds as “Lung Cancer Team Canada” for Lung Cancer Canada, and growing numbers are participating in political advocacy for lung cancer.
I’m very grateful for the women and men I’ve met through our Ottawa support group. They are silver linings of lung cancer.
If you don’t have a support group and you would like to explore starting one, please start looking around and asking questions. You may be in an area where it may not look like there are enough people or resources for a lung cancer specific group, but don’t let that discourage you. People are willing to help; reach out!
Once you have three, there’s no telling what you can do!
To celebrate support groups and survivorship, please give generously to lung cancer research!
Here’s to all the care givers, whether family or friends, and neighbours and even strangers who reach out with care, knowing that people going through lung cancer, or any tough time, need extra care. It’s not good to be alone. We all need team. Cheers to the people who reach out with kindness, compassion, care, comfort, empathy, gentleness, grace, support, understanding, muffins, meals, encouragement.
We all benefit from from kind words and actions. How much better our world is when people are uplifting, inspiring, cheering, caring and giving.
Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King said, Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
Cheers to all the people who shine a light. Cheers to everyone who makes this world a better place by walking – even part of the way – through the valley with someone who has received difficult news like a lung cancer diagnosis. Cheers and THANK YOU.
It’s not good to be alone. We are better together, stronger together. #TeamMatters
Cheers to everyone who makes a difference through caring!
To celebrate care givers and survivorship, please give generously to lung cancer research!