Waiting for something to print. I apologize for not updating more frequently. It's amazing how much more difficult it is to write daily when you actually have things to do. Life certainly is different now that I am not my sitting on a hospital bed with absolutely nothing to do.
An update is in order. A major update. The past two days have been... crazy. I don't know how else to put it. It all started when BU Today ran the profile of me the day before my birthday. I started getting e-mails and messages from completely random people wishing me happy birthday and also telling me how much they liked the interview. There were lots of, "I really admire your courage," quotes, which to me is amazing. I was thinking about this, and I came to the conclusion that anyone else in this situation would have done the same thing. I've just been more vocal with my experiences. Either way. I probably received over 100 e-mails on Monday and Tuesday, both well-wishes and birthday wishes. Two e-mails are worth noting:
The first was from a woman who was forwarded my story from a BU student. She told me she is writing a book about college-age cancer survivors. Specifically, she has interviewed and been in contact with about forty survivors. She has taken their firsthand accounts of their cancer experiences and put them together for a book. Anyway, so she e-mailed me and asked if I would like to be one of the survivors in the book, which is so far nameless. I of course said Yes. We've talked on the phone, and it sounds like such a fantastic idea. The book is not just of the survivors' stories, but it also contains letters and pictures and such. I am so flattered to be a part of this and so excited that she is writing it. There are no other books out there that highlight specifically young-adult survivors, that tell their stories in their own words. I mean, really, it would have been a huge help ten months ago to know about others who were going through the same thing. So I am excited, and it is going to be great.
Part Two: I was contacted by the dean of the medical school here at BU, and, long story short, I will be speaking to pretty much all of the first-year medical students at the end of October. I guess I'm pretty good at expressing myself, and people think that's cool? Anyway, I will be talking about what it was like when I was first diagnosed, how the doctors treated me, my reaction, etc. And did I mention it will be in front of masses of first-year med students? Yes, I think I did. Pretty sweet. I guess if I ever had any lingering fear of public speaking, I had better eliminate it quickly.
So here's the thing about all this attention I am receiving: It's not that I don't necessarily want it, but I don't want it just for the sake of getting attention. I want to be able to make a difference, whether by helping increase empathy for future doctors, or by helping another twenty year-old girl just diagnosed with cancer get through the hard parts. I don't want my fifteen minutes of cancer-fame; I want to try and do something lasting. I am not sure yet how to translate all this into a "cause" though. Maybe start something at BU for survivors; I have heard from a couple, which is amazing. Maybe start a Gilda's Club or a Boston young-adult group, or something. I'm not sure. I do know, however, that now it is up to me to take this ball and run with it. Anyway. So that's been my week. Like I said, it has been crazy. I hope your week was as awesome, and I hope the weekend goes well as well. Oh yeah, still no chemo. Next Wednesday, for sure. Alright, that's all (haha, even though there's always more.) Pax.