Weekly Round-Up

girl_with_lassoTime for this week’s round-up of the best of the blogs which I’ve read over the past week. These are the posts that have moved me, taught me something, inspired me, and which I’ve wanted to share with you. Remember, if you have written or read a post recently which you would like me to share with readers, then please leave a comment below.

New York has been much on our minds after Hurricane Sandy, (check out Anne Marie’s Franenstorm pictures), so it is nice to read about Florence’s prom dress shopping in New York and her chance for some mother/daughter bonding.

Also on vacation is Susan of the Mainelyhopeful blog – and check out her new tattoo!

I have been enjoying reading Lori’s posts for NaBloPoMo aka National Blog Posting Month and catching up with Debbie’s Survivor Nest series.

I always think Christmas advertising happens too early each year, but here is one Christmassy idea I enjoyed reading – how to prepare chestnuts – a step by step guide from The Savvy Sister.

Yvonne has written another beautifully eloquent piece, this time marking Remembrance Day and reflecting on the divisions that have so blighted and marked the history of our shared country of birth.

It seems there is no escaping the pinkification of breast cancer – even in death. Yes, pinkification has now come to funeral homes, where pink blazers and pink coffins are on offer – thanks to Anne Marie and Susan for highlighting this latest pink infiltration.

In Welcome to Cancerland, the Pink Underbelly has written a clever, witty and oh so true observation of the stages we go through on our cancer journey:

utter shock upon being diagnosed; extreme pissed-off-edness at losing body parts and quality of life, coupled with the potential for losing my life itself; crippling helplessness and a total lack of control in regards to recurrence; unpredictable fear and panic at any given time; and soul-crushing depression at the “new normal” that follows a cancer “journey.

Whatever stage we are on the cancer journey, there is no doubt in my mind that the journey is helped by having good support and practical advice along the way. Ideally this support happens in real life interactions, but increasingly we are turning to online support. This is a topic on Dr Kathleen Hoffman’s blog this week, and she has provided a poll for you to vote on whether you agree/disagree that patient communities are an effective way to deliver care.

Hair loss is one of the cancer stages many of us have gone through or are going through now.  Nancy’s Point has written a thoughtful and helpful post on chemotherapy induced hair loss which took me right back to my own experience.

Even when we are finished with treatment, we are never finished with cancer. Follow up appointments, mammograms, and tests are anxious times and Elaine captures this in her post, Nobody Expects The Spanish Inquisition.

Cancer doesn’t just affect the individual – it is a family affair and Jackie’s latest post deals with what it is like to be a breast cancer husband.

Tami is writing about the importance of getting a second, third, or even fourth opinion and has some good news to share on her blog this week.

Sometimes – indeed quite frequently – cancer can make us re-evaluate our lives and change direction. This is very much the stage that Audrey is in right now, and one that is epitomized in the words of Teri, as she edges closer to taking her first group of volunteers to Delhi..”  after living through cancer, many of us know that we have to chase our dreams NOW. We don’t know if the disease will return or spread further; so we seize opportunities and live the hell out of life. “

And Sarah, who is going through cancer treatment again, has decided that life is too short right now not to live it on her own terms.

Finally, I want to leave you with the words of Jen from keepthecalm. I defy you not to be deeply moved by her beautiful words:

I decide that I am not only going to just observe life or will use a crutch to try to live. I’m still sick, my bones hurt and such, but today I can see and I will try to live. I get sick after I try to live. I have a cold after a weekend visiting with friends and family. I am sure I will be exhausted by the upcoming Thanksgiving celebration, but sometimes that feeling is worth the time spent living. The moment may pass of my feeling this way, but for now I will acknowledge and try, try to crest the mountains, to live.

Yours with love

Marie xxx