Because we look healthy on the outside, we must be healthy on the inside? Well, I know for a fact that you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, and you damn well shouldn't judge a cancer by it's body.
The show had one purpose and that was to raise money and not to address other issues in the cancer continuum. The questions raised in my mind while watching the show were just from me reading between the lines.
Life is complicated. Life after a cancer diagnosis is even more complicated. It can hit you hard, so hard that you find yourself gasping for air. It is never something you can be prepared for, and it leaves you confused, puzzled, and disoriented.
One thing cancer cannot do is lessen the courage and fight a person has in them. Now I'm 17, a year we weren't sure I'd live to see. Not only am I a childhood cancer survivor, I am still standing.
It's not like that any more. I didn't hate the friends I met at the party last weekend for not knowing. After all, it's been almost four years since my diagnosis.
That evening when we got home, Sean said something that became a game-changer. Instead of worrying about the "what-if's" in life, it became clear to us that we were the decision-makers.
Every time I can give someone their confidence back is like winning a battle. I am fueled to move forward to change the industry, to draw attention and to find a solution. When a wig works for someone its contribution to their well-being is undeniable.
There are many times during my little skirmish with cancer that I gave in to the physical beating. Friends would call and ask me to do things, and while my heart wanted to say yes, my brain would say "No. I'm too sick."
What's in a word is more than just language -- there's assignment of culpability, patient personhood, a world of feeling that is often, and for critical reason, removed from the linguistics of medical speak.
Sometimes through the darkest skies the brightest stars reveal themselves and shine. Although I never asked to be in this situation, being confronted by the darkest of fears, and accepting, confronting, and overcoming that fear enabled me to learn, grow, and be even more mortal.