Todd and I watched Stand Up 2 Cancer last night and I found it emotionally draining. Cancer statistics are staggering. Mind blowing. Unreal. In the United States alone 1500 people die from the disease each day. One person each minute. And yet the means to end this insidious illness are within our grasp. For the very first time I’ve started thinking I may see the cure in my lifetime.
Before I was diagnosed I wasn’t afraid of cancer. It was something that happened to other people. I was young and healthy and there was no reason to think I would end up with it. But I did get it and a year later my mom got it. It changed the way I think and not necessarily for the better. My rose colored glasses shattered and no amount of duct tape will ever fix them.
If only we could find the cure. If we could stop cancer before it starts. If we could obliterate the disease and talk about it past tense like polio and yellow fever. Maybe then I wouldn’t have this niggle of fear in the recesses of my heart. The fear that my daughter or my son or my husband or my sisters or my father, ad infinitum, will hear those same words I heard a little over three years ago.
The program last night was a lot of things – sad, moving, inspiring, exciting. The individual stories tugged on my heart, the stories of children with cancer tore at my soul. How incredible it would be to have a cure and make these stories a thing of the past.
I want a cure. I want it now. I don’t want to have the nagging questions in the back of my mind. Will I get cancer again? Will my daughter or sisters end up with breast cancer? Has my family paid their cancer dues or will we have to ante up again? Geesh. Imagine a world where we don’t have those kinds of worries. How awesome would that be?
Just like everything else, research isn’t free. Which is the point of this particular organization. They talked about how the March of Dimes was started to fund polio research and find the cure. At that time the plea was for every person in the U.S. to send in one dime and that would be enough money for the research. And look what happened. Polio in America is a distant nightmare. This is the same thing.
Last night 100% of the donations went directly to cancer research. I’m not sure if that was just during that hour or if it continues even still, but if you’d like to make a donation you can click on the link above.
Some of you also read Michelle at My Semblance of Sanity. She has blogged a lot about a very special little boy named Julian Avery. Julian lost his fight with cancer in January. There was a part last night where Halle Berry, Casey Affleck, Jennifer Garner and Forrest Whitaker read a short piece about different cancer patients and their picture was shown on the screen behind them. All of a sudden there was Julian on the screen and Forrest Whitaker read a piece his mother, Mimi, had written. If it hadn’t already been personal, it sure was after that. Not that I ever knew Julian or his family, but I’d been reading about him and everything he was going through and mourned the day I learned he passed away.
As sad as pediatric cancer is – and it’s the saddest of all forms – there is hope. Hope for a cure. If you can’t pay for a cure, you can at least pray for a cure.
Crossposted at Mothers With Cancer