Breast Cancer and Personal Growth

While I would never recommend that someone get breast cancer, I found that it was growth and learning experience for me. I am fiercely independent rarely asking or accepting help. But breast cancer changed that. People really wanted to help. I found that it was okay to say yes. It opened my eyes to possibilities I didn't dare think before. A brief story about this exprience: I remember walking the survivor lap around the reflecting pool at Celebration on the Hill. There were all these people around the pool cheering us on, high fiving and congratulating us. I wish anyone reading this has an experience (the walking, not the cancer) such as this once in their lifetime. The absolute sense of community and love was almost overwhelming. I would be remiss if I didn't recognize a very good friend who came with me to my chemotherapy appointments. We laughed and talked and the time passed. Another part of the story is another kind of message about caring. We survivors are a luck bunch. I think we have an obligation to advocate for anyone suffering or in need, particularly it it looks like their are doing so in silence. Not only are there other cancers, but there are a lot of serious illness and neediness that we should be aware of as well. Fund raising or awareness campagins should not be in competition for scarce dollars, diabetes or poverty are equally worthy causes. So, let us stand up for humanity.
Roberta Bernstein
Concord, MA