Monday, 2 March 2015

The Flu Gave Me Insight

I'm sitting here writing this in a towel as I try to recover from a nasty flu. Just let that image sink in for a moment. Mmmmm. I'm sick to my stomach, my body is sore and I'm mentally fatigued. The best part of this flu is that this is a completely foreign feeling to me.

Why am I telling you all of this? I want people to know that curing cancer is not the only reason you donate to cancer fundraisers. The treatments involved in curing cancer or, at the very least, staving it off are extremely taxing on the body. You can get worn down and feel absolutely miserable making the treatment often worse than the disease. This leads to poor survival rates because some folks opt to forego treatment because of how awful they feel. 

In recent years, however, such incredible developments have been made that they don't have to completely obliterate your body to treat your cancer. Rather, these new targeted treatments are bothy more effective and less harsh on the patient. 

As I lay in bed thinking about how miserable I feel I am filled with a profound appreciation of those that have gone before me. The ones that fought through illness. The ones that offered their bodies up to improve treatments. And the ones that donated to places like the Alberta Cancer Foundation and the Canadian Cancer Society. 

I was lucky enough to get a behind-the-scenes tour of the Cross Cancer Institute and see the amazing work they're doing there. One of the resounding themes I heard was that the advances are directly related to the donations to these charities. The government only funds so much. To truly make a change we need the private citizens to contribute to these events. 

Every one of you that has contributed in any way has really made life better for people like me and I thank you. Going forward, don't think the only measure of success is a "cure for cancer." Every day they're getting a little better and treatments are a little easier. 

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