The Weekly Round Up Returns

girl_with_lassoIt’s back! Welcome to the round-up of the best of the blog posts 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. I am a bit out of practice at putting this together, so if I miss your blog this time round, please do leave a link in the comments below. 

What happens when you drop the “cancer” label? Eileen reflects on moving on with life after four years with cancer. And while we want to drop the label and move on with our lives it’s hard when the legacy of treatment is a constant reminder.  A True Journey points to this with her post on osteoporosis and the trials of Tamoxifen are up for discussion on both the Hen Backtalk and One of 300 Men blogs. Diane writes about the reality of living in a post -treatment body on her blog and Jamie about the constant fear of recurrence than stalks us. Kay has even coined a word “denality” to describe the cancer survivor’s experience of being in a place between denial and reality.

Being told that your life is about to end is one of the most devastating events people will ever experience. No matter how shocking and painful it is for those around us, their grief is no match for our own. We grieve for a life cut short, the future we planned, the milestones we will miss.

These words written on Lulu Change’s blog are a powerful reminder of the devastation wrought by Stage IV cancer.  When faced with such catastrophic pain, how do people respond? Read the blog and find out; it’s not how they ought to! And speaking of inappropriate responses, check out Nancy’s latest post Ten Reasons Why Breast Reconstruction Is Not A Boob Job! Then read Anna’s thoughts on misguided expectations around hope.

You get a real bang for your buck this week at Elizabeth’s blog – lessons on mindfulness, self-care and a gorgeous summer salad recipe.

Self care is also the topic for discussion on Rachel’s blog which includes a link to download a 10 minute meditation.

Justinewriting about infertility, nevertheless speaks to that person inside all of us when we feel we have to justify (to ourselves? to others?) about how much we’ve suffered.

My fear that I will be judged that I didn’t try enough. That I didn’t lose enough.

We put so much pressure on ourselves to be “more than” in our lives.  Renee addresses this with her powerful statement:

I have to realize I am doing all I can, all I need to do and I am doing enough. I am enough.

A beautiful tribute by Tracy to the breast cancer community – the “club none of us wanted to join is populated by people who are smart, loyal, determined, compassionate and empathic” – and how we hurt each time we lose one of its precious members. Sharon writes on the same theme on her blog Why Is A Question That Will Never Have An Answer. And Debra’s recent posting focuses on learning about her friend and cousin’s metastatic breast cancer diagnosis while attending this year’s ASCO meeting.

Elsewhere in the blogosphere….

There’s no stopping Jo who has been on a charity bike ride in the midst of her chemo regimen.

Lisa reflects on the importance of cancer peer support.

The Cancer Curmudgeon is on a blogging hiatus..but still thinking of you all.

Sharing humor through the pain – the latest post by Knot Telling.

The Luna Tech Chick is celebrating her five year cancerversary.

Loved learning more about Anne Marie, Beth and Jennifer’s writing process.

Excellent post by Nicole on barriers to healthcare.

The bloody conflict in Gaza evokes memories of Yvonne’s childhood during the war in Northern Ireland.

Jackie continues to share lessons she has learned through breast cancer – this week: how to holiday with no hair.

Loving healing thoughts go out to The Pink Underbelly as she recovers from her recent hysterectomy.

Ismena is squeezing the most of life with a trip to the beautiful Amalfi coast being a recent highlight.

Audrey writes about health inequalities and a more equal society in which to be well.

Good news from Catherine whose latest scan shows nodes are shrinking.

A lovely post by the cancer brat (great name!) on the healing power of love – both the human and the animal kind.

Katy reflects on a year since she received her diagnosis of cancer for a second time and her words seem a fitting way to end this week’s round-up.

This year has been cold and dark and hard, but not all the time. It’s always colder, darker, and harder somewhere else. There will be another time in my life that will be ice and blackness and Sisyphus’ stones compared to this.

But I’ve said it before in this forum and I will say it again–not yet. Not yet.

I’ve said those words to myself every single day of the last year, of the last four years, really. The ability to say them is a privilege denied to many. So what can I say but enjoy your years, and the age they bring. Live in the skin that holds you, not the skin that holds someone else or the person you might have been.

It might be different next year.

Until next week.

Yours with love

Marie xxx