Welcome! This is the place where you will find lots of helpful and interesting information about I Had Cancer events, member spotlights, and featured connections. You will also find guest blogs, editorials about current news and much more.

We hope that what you find here will bring you closer to finding Health, Hope, and Happiness.

December 18, 2014 | by Mama_Emma
Yes, I said a "family with Cancer", because when one member has Cancer, it affects the family unit as a whole. When one member suffers, all the members suffer. We work as a group, as a team, with one goal: TO KICK CANCER'S BUTT!

The DO's and DON'Ts

1. DO reach out, by phone, text, email, snail mail, anything. Please do not be afraid to contact the family. Yes, they are busy but if they want too, they will pick up the phone, if they can't, they won't. (But don't expect a timely reply. You lose track of time in the hospital, days can turn into weeks. They will call you back when they are able to.)

2. DO leave an open ended...
December 11, 2014 | by BarbaraBurrell-...
Life after cancer is anything abut normal. Instead of focusing on finding "the new normal," Barbara believes that survivors should focus on discovering "the new life" and leave "normal" behind. Read more.

The New Normal. Those three words can be frustrating and daunting to hear as a cancer survivor. I, personally, detest them.

Like many a cancer survivor, I have proclaimed, "I don't want the new normal - I want my normal back." I know it’s impossible – life will not go back to the way it was before cancer, as cancer is an opponent that does not fight fairly. Its goal is to kill, steal and destroy. But the best revenge against such an adversary is to stay strong, make the survivor's voice heard and to not only accept that things will not be the same, but to embrace the new life.

Often times cancer survivors...
December 5, 2014 | by Mallory
Cancer is expensive. All these new costs in your life can quickly make it seem like you don't have enough money to do the things that you used to do before. Here are some tricks that Mallory, a cancer survivor, uses to make budgeting more manageable.

Let's get real for a second - cancer is f***ing expensive! Even for those who had great insurance and just paid for co-pays, cancer is still expensive! If you're paying more than just co-pays, all of those scans and treatments and visits with the doctor definitely add up (and quickly). If you're traveling somewhere for appointments and treatments, you are now factoring in extra gas, food eaten somewhere besides your own home, and lost time away from work. That babysitter job that you used to have to supplement your income, that probably has to go because of your lower than before...
November 28, 2014 | by Mama_Emma
Unlike adult patients, children require 24-around-the-clock parental care in the hospital. In some cases, one parent is trying to work still, or its a single parent situation, so that leaves the “Cancer Mama” (or "Papa") to fend for herself in the jungles of the hospital.

One must remember that a Cancer Mama's number one mission in life is to care for her child, her own well being comes second in all cases. Hopefully this will explain the following:

You spot a greasy haired woman in the washroom, she is attempting to brush her teeth with her finger. She sweeps her unwashed hair into a quick pony tail, hoping nobody will notice. She pinches her cheeks to try to add some colour to them and maybe distract from the deep circles under her eyes from days of interrupted sleep on the most uncomfortable plastic fold out chair in the...
November 21, 2014 | by JamiMayberry
Is it possible to come to terms with cancer treatment and everything that your body is going to have to endure? According to Jami, it was the best thing she could have done.

When I was first diagnosed with cancer I wasn't sure what journey lay ahead of me. So many decisions to make. When my doctor at MD Anderson in Houston, Dr. Eifel, laid out the radiation treatment plan for me it seemed rather long but thought I could do it. Then she decided to add chemotherapy as well once a week. So on Mondays I would get radiation in the morning and chemo for 5 hours in the afternoon. Mondays were very long days.

I began to feel agitated and began to suffer from the side effects. It seemed I was fighting against this happening to me. I didn't want to have cancer. I didn't want chemo and the weakness and nausea that goes with it. I...
November 7, 2014 | by CMMoore
Did you find yourself stuck on the couch while you were going through cancer treatment, and even afterwards? According to Christine, that could have been a good thing. Read more.

Never would I have imagined that I would get cancer in my thirties or that I would be on disability for nine months recuperating from cancer treatment. Many of my hours were spent lying on the couch sleeping, lying on the couch fighting the nausea monster, or feeling so weak I could barely get off the couch. During that experience, I looked at it as wasted time. All I wanted was to be at work, go places and do things, like a normal person. Lying on the couch wasn't my idea of a productive life. It made me feel depressed.

But was it really a waste?

Now, as a twelve-plus year survivor of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, I believe those countless hours,...
October 30, 2014 | by rachaelyahne
Like many cancer survivors, Rachael has endured countless dark days and periods in which she questioned why she, so meager and lost, was able to live on, and whether she was wasting a second chance at life. Read more to find out how she found hope.

I write this post not as a typical article, but as a love letter to you, reader. There can be no doubt that this burden I experienced is one anyone who has fought to survive could face. As such, I write this honestly and without restraint, personally to each and every one of you, in hopes that we might help each other see the light ahead when night is at its darkest.

    My beautiful comrades,

    I so desperately wish the truth could be different or that I could somehow, impossibly, change the circumstances for you when you needed me to, but I cannot.

October 22, 2014 | by DrZembroski
Dr. Zembroski is a Doctor Who Became a Patient and a Fellow Cancer Victor®, who hates the word "remission." Read more to find out why.

A diagnosis of cancer can be traumatic, to say the least. For most, going through cancer care can be physically devastating, from cancer itself, and the side effects of toxic and disabling chemotherapy, to invasive and often disfiguring surgery. Let's not forget radiation therapy, hormone modifiers, immunotherapy and, sometimes, stem-cell and bone-marrow transplants that can lead to graph-vs-host disease (someone else's white blood cells attacking your body).

Along with the physical effects of cancer care, there is the emotional anguish of dealing with the diagnosis, treatment, and language of cancer. Terms that we often hear are "survivor", "survival rate", "metastasis", "cancer staging...
October 16, 2014 | by Tiffany_Staropoli
Tiffany doesn't want to fight with cancer anymore. Read more to find out what she does instead.

What I am about to tell you may not be very popular. And truth be told, I've been hesitant to write about it for fear of offending or insulting others. But there's that word again...FEAR. I no longer want fear to dictate my life or my decisions or my desires to share my personal belief system with the world. Especially a belief system that seems to be working some seriously great things in my life.

So here it goes...

Are you ready?

I have given up the fight with cancer.I refuse to engage in the struggle any longer. The battle is futile and the war on cancer is a waste of my time, my energy and my talents.

Allow me to explain...

Our society has embraced one way and one way only to discuss...
October 10, 2014 | by advimed
Before you start chemotherapy, make sure you are prepared for what is about to happen. Read more for some tips that can help you prepare.

If you were recently diagnosed with cancer, and you are prescribed chemotherapy, anticipating surgery or awaiting radiation therapy, you should have an educational visit before treatment starts. If you’re not scheduled for such a visit, request one. The visit, usually led by a nurse, is crucial so that you can understand, prepare for and manage your upcoming treatment. It should be the first step of a successful journey toward recovery.

As a billing manager for a busy oncology practice, I have participated in hundreds of such educational visits. These tips should help guide you in this process:

1. Bring one trusted, level-headed person...