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.

Thanks to an ongoing battle with  insomnia, I was able for the first time to take part in the #BCSM twitter chat on Monday (you can read a transcript of the chat here).  The topic was metastatic breast cancer and quite a lot of the talk was about how best to support a friend with MBC. It isn’t always easy, as often we are dealing with our fears and we are afraid we might say the wrong thing. I have written here before about how Rachel of the Cancer Culture Chronicles was the first person to really educate me to the realities of living with metastatic breast cancer, and since then, I have found a host of other vocal, passionate, bloggers on the subject – bloggers like Katherine of i hate breast cancer. This week Katherine has been discussing the things people say to you when you have cancer “if you have breast cancer, you will have heard at least one of these clueless comments” writes Katherine, but she does concede that it’s  “not easy to know what to say and in most cases, the responses are truly heartfelt if often unintentionally hilarious”.

Dr Matthew Katz who is an informative and supportive presence on Twitter (@subatomicdoc for my twitterati readers) has written an interesting article for Oncology Times this week:

Cancer is an illness of transformation. Biologically, it represents a change in growth and homeostasis. Metaphorically, a cancer diagnosis can transform how you see yourself and the way you experience life afterward.  Even after successful treatment, patients live with continual uncertainty, leaving them in a limbo called NED because confirming cure is difficult.

Nancy has another of her thought-provoking posts this week as she ask the question what is a typical cancer diagnosis? And what does it do to your life?Well one thing it does, is it “eats up about a year of a person’s life by the time all is said and done.”

Breast reconstruction is one of the decisions and further surgeries that we face as breast cancer survivors and Bringing Up Goliath is dealing with the topic on her blog this week.

Also writing about surgery and squeamishness is Jackie at Dispatch From Second Base, and also reflecting on patient empowerment.

Of course we know that cancer doesn’t just affect us physically, but emotionally and psychologically we also have a battle on our hands, and it is this emotional side of cancer that Britta Aragon addresses on her blog this week.

In Decisions, Decisions, Oh My, Anne Marie is weighing up choices and wondering what the likelihood  is that she might develop a SECOND breast cancer, whilst also wishing for a pair of Dorothy’s ruby red shoes to click.

In a week which saw a new report launched which finds that although the survival rate for younger women with breast cancer has improved over the last two decades, their cancer treatments can seriously affect quality of life and other health outcomes, Catherine’s latest post is very apposite.

Jeannine Walston, co-founder of EmbodiWorks, a non-profit organization providing integrative cancer care resources emailed me during the week to alert me to her latest article in the Huffington Post about how she healed after her second brain surgery.

Gorgeous pictures of snowdrops on Being Sarah’s blog and I so enjoyed reading about these hopeful, delicate, beautiful signs of spring.

Florence is taking a break from blogging while she undergoes a mastectomy and I am sure you will join with me in sending her healing thoughts and wishes.

The Pink Underbelly has been musing on what and how much you should your child when you have been diagnosed with cancer

 Having cancer is a full-time job, as is raising young kids. So I never found the right answer, and decided to just wing it.

I can imagine how scary it must be for kids when a parent has cancer,  but it seems to me that she is doing a great job winging it.

I always come away from Jody’s Women With Cancer blog more enlightened and informed about the key issues of patient advocacy and this week is no exception.

Debbie has a week’s worth of great posts on Where We Go Now, including a cancer poem, tips for yoga, and my favorite, Mindful Monday.

I always find it fabulously exotic when Phillipa goes on her adventures and this week she is sharing with us her experience of Mrauk U at Christmastime. And another dear friend on her own adventure is Terri – check out A Fresh Chapter for the latest installment.

Memories of Christmases past are haunting Jan’s reveries this week and my heart was deeply touched by her latest post.

Another blog tugging at my heart-strings is The Accidental Amazon’s Musings From Limbo. I am sure many of you have visited the place described by Kathi so eloquently this week, so why not pop by her blog and show her your support.

From one amazon to another…

I love this line from the Becoming Amazon blog and hope it may also offer some light and solace to Kathi, as it did me.

I work again to honor the Divine in me – the blessed wound that keeps bringing me to a place of compassion and presence and examination of what is true.

Honoring the Divine reminds me that Katie of Uneasy Pink is joining the Sharon Salzberg 28 day meditation challenge, starting February 1st. Who is going to join her?

Finally, regular readers will have heard me talk about author and blogger Therese Borchard and how much I admire her courage and honesty in shining a light into the darkness of depression. So it was with shock and dismay that I read on her Beyond Blue blog that because of health and personal reasons, she will no longer be maintaining it. I feel as if I am losing a friend – her compassion and her insight sustained me through many a dark time of depression. I do of course understand Therese’s reasons for pulling back and I admire her wisdom in knowing what the right thing to do for herself and her family is, but gosh, I will miss Beyond Blue. It has made me think of how much we come to depend on things and people staying the same and knowing they will be right in the same place we left them, don’t you think?

Until next week, keep working on honoring the Divine in you by being compassionate and present to whatever you are experiencing in your life right now.

Marie xxx