Wednesday, March 17, 2010

More than Hope

Good Morning Cancer Survivors:
I recently discovered cancer patients are considered cancer survivors as soon as they are diagnosed with cancer. Surviving cancer has to start somewhere and this is probably a good place to start surviving. Having attended several sessions for cancer survivors and their caregivers, provided by major support groups and cancer treatment programs of major hospitals, I found it curious and then disturbing these organizations encourage survivors to have "hope". Am I missing something? Obviously they haven't sat in the infusion chair connected to the chemo juice or laid on the radiation table for their daily tanning session of radiation or woke up in the night from the excruciating pain from the treatment or experienced the other agonies cancer treatment inflicts. Any cancer survivor in treatment or completed treatment knows Hope won't get them through it. Hope is what you need when your cancer treatment team informs you there is nothing more they can do for you.

Starting the cancer treatment journey with hope is like going into battle hoping not to lose rather than fighting to win. Hope doesn't instill confidence and a resolve to win, which is what newly diagnosed cancer survivors need at the start of the journey. So until the time for hope in your cancer treatment journey arrives, get in the fight and join the journey with the commitment, resolve, determination and mental fortitude you will need to do everything to win this fight. But when you start treatment you will need to develop a "get tough no bull" attitude which will require you to contribute everything you can to achieving the treatment's success. Getting motivated to do this at the start of the journey is easy. Staying motivated during the journey is difficult. What do you have to lose? If you don't do this, what is your alternative plan?

There may come a time on your cancer treatment journey when you will need to have hope but don't start the journey hoping not to lose, start the journey fighting to win.

Bruce E Jacobs

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