Writing about cancer taught me that I’m not alone

When I became a writer I always wanted my writing to touch people’s lives. As a daily newspaper reporter my favorite stories were those that caused readers to feel emotion, whether joy or sadness. I wasn’t a fan of writing the big crime story or covering a mayoral or town council announcement. I really liked those stories about people fighting to survive everyday life. In many ways those were the everyday heroes that we forget about.

One of my editors at my first full-time job would challenge us to make him cry with our holiday story idea and he was a tough man to get to shed a tear. Now several years removed from my life in journalism I find myself back at that goal of touching people’s lives and making them feel emotion. Only this time, the topic isn’t a family in a nearby town, but it is about me. I want people to understand what it means to have cancer.

For months I’ve been writing about my battle with breast cancer at HelloGiggles, and in wrapping up the year, I’ll be wrapping up this column. (I’ll continue to share my experiences on my blog Cancer Sucks.) Writing about the intricacies of my experience on HG has taught me that I am not alone. I’ve received many comments from both supporters and from those who want to share their story about battling this disease.

For those reading this who have not faced cancer please donate your time or money to fighting this disease and supporting those going through it. There are truly no words to describe what it is like to sit in these appointments and have a doctor tell you that your whole world will change. I just had an appointment like that with my radiologist who needed to explain to me why I can’t even use the same deodorant while going through radiation treatment and how my skins will literally peel off my body with each visit. But I guess that means the radiation is doing its job.

I am not complaining, but rather hoping to show people why this disease is tough and why we should fight for a cure for all types of cancer. It impacts everyone, of every age. And it’s never something you’re prepared for. There are days that suck and days where you wonder: “How much more of this will I have to take?” It is important for people to have someone they can talk with, or articles or blogs they can read that show them that they will get through this, and they will be stronger in the end.

I and so many others will continue to fight the disease. I wish everyone a good holiday and to my fellow cancer patients, please do not give up. You are strong and beautiful, no matter how this disease has affected your lives.

(Image via Shutterstock)

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