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A Humorous Look at the Bright Side of Cancer... and There Is One

December 9th, 2015

Cancer Survivorship-3

August 12, 2015 at the University of Puget Sound
August 12, 2015 at the University of Puget Sound

I had just finished presenting “Marking Milestones” for my afternoon session at the Pierce County Cancer Survivorship Conference when the sturdy gentleman at the back of the room stood up and proceeded to tell his story:

“My milestones: In 1919, I was born. During World War II…”—here, he mentioned so many medals, I couldn’t keep them all straight—“…In 1943, I married the love of my life. In 1950, we adopted our Persian beauties. In 1961, got cancer. In 1975, had second bout with cancer….” My favorite part of the whole story was when he plunked his prosthetic leg on top of the wooden writing platform in front of him and announced, “I am alive.”

I wanted to run up to this brave man and give him a hug. Instead, I praised him profusely and wondered anew at how this disease affects so many different people from so many different walks of life.

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Marie de Haan

Marie de Haan

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