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Look to your right – it’s not all about me! September 13, 2009

Posted by PAS in cancer, survivorship, the 'net.
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Image by koka_sexton via Flickr

When I started writing this blog, it was all about me — what I was feeling, my treatments, my surgeries, my struggles, my doctors. But as my life out loud lasted longer and moved into remission, and then recurrence, and now back into remission, I wrote here about different subjects. Some of my other passions (as you might have noticed from reading older posts) are my dogs, dog training, research, camping and cooking. This blog has become very personal, and for the most part, it’s still all about me.

But now and then I’ve written about causes which inspire me: the lifestyle study examining cancer prevention which is taking place in NY state’s Mohawk Valley; the foolishness of some proposed NY state canine legislation; Yoga Bear‘s efforts to get funding for programs that bring yoga to cancer patients; the Army of Women’s efforts to bring more women into cancer patient research. And the last few days I’ve mentioned Everything Changes, Kairol Rosenthal’s blog about living with a cancer diagnosis in as a 20 or 30-something adult.

Kairol writes a great blog, one that makes me think (in a good way) about how I’ve chosen to live with cancer. As much as I enjoy her blog, it’s only one of the links in my sidebar. So today, it’s not all about me. It’s time to spotlight some of the other folks who make up my blog roll. Those links in the right-sidebar are there because I find their blogs or the sites interesting, thought-provoking, inspiring — and sometimes they make me laugh out loud (LOL is on purpose an acronym for my Life Out Loud.)

Casa Az is my friend Azahar’s personal blog. Like me, Az is a stage IV cancer survivor. Unlike me, she’s an American ex-patriot (Canadian) living abroad in a place I’ve always wanted to visit: Seville, Spain. On her site, you’ll also see links to her beautiful photos at Azahar’s Sevilla, Azahar’s Kitchen, and Sevilla Tapas. Dealing with cancer outside of the battered US health care system is very different from what I’ve experienced here, and sometimes orders of magnitude more complex. Az inspires me daily, mainly because most of the time she lives her life and doesn’t talk about cancer.

Dr. Mike Eades’ Protein Power Blog can cover any subject that crosses Mike’s radar, but it most often focuses on diet and nutrition research. I’ve been a low-carber since 2002; some of my docs think my diet may have helped me withstand the rigors of over 75 chemo infusions, three surgeries and 25 days of radiation. I’m not going to argue; low-carbing just makes me feel better. Mike’s trademark post is an analysis of the latest hot-topic nutrition study — and he generally can make even the most complex nutritional science interesting and accessible.

The author of My Cancer Deployment calls herself ‘Sugarmouth O’Riordan.’ Be warned, this isn’t a sweet-as-pie discussion of life with rectal cancer. The subhead for the blog says it all: You’ll find no pretty ribbons here. Sugarmouth spells out what she’s feeling, how she’s feeling with the appropriate asterisks included. Her blog is gritty and real and Sugarmouth always makes me think.

Whidbey Woman is a caregiver to her husband, Ron, a recurrent colon cancer survivor. She’s been journaling about her experience at Ron’s Road to Recovery. Mixed in with observations and thoughts about coping as a caregiver are tips for survivors like how to prepare as a patient when you’re about to start chemo again.

I met Rotorhead at the Colon Club, an online support community for colorectal cancer survivors and caregivers. Rotorhead’s Waterblog is about RH’s journey with cancer, and his physical and mental return to wellness. I think what I find most appealing about RH’s blog is that he’s done as much as he can, as often as he could, to focus on living his life. And he writes about surfing in Hawaii. When things were tough for me, I’d visit RH’s blog for the sheer vicarious joy of reading about his daily adventures on the ocean.

There are more blogs out there which talk out loud about survivorship; I’ll spotlight them in another post. Meanwhile, you might find some thought-provoking interest if you check out the links in my Blogroll. There it is in the sidebar — just look to the right. Survivorship isn’t all about me.

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Comments

1. azahar - September 14, 2009

Canadian, atchly 😉

Thanks for the mentions. I’m very proud to have you call me your friend, and l appreciate all the times you’ve been there for me.

At hospital waiting for scan results as l write this. Thinking of you helps with having strong thoughts.

2. gaelenscafe - September 14, 2009

oh my – Canadian? How’d I miss that? Hope by the time you read this you’ve gotten your scan results and that they’re good news.

3. Whidbeywoman - September 14, 2009

Thanks for the link! Keep up the great posts!

4. gaelenscafe - September 15, 2009

Whidbeywoman, you’re most welcome! This post is my blog’s version of Twitter’s #followfriday. I link to what I like to read, and I figured it was time to put some of that in the spotlight.

5. Twitter Trackbacks for Look to your right – it’s not all about me! « Life Out Loud [gaelenscafe.wordpress.com] on Topsy.com - September 15, 2009

[…] Look to your right – it’s not all about me! « Life Out Loud gaelenscafe.wordpress.com/2009/09/13/look-to-your-right-its-not-all-about-me – view page – cached When I started writing this blog, it was all about me — what I was feeling, my treatments, my surgeries, my struggles, my doctors. But as my life out loud lasted longer and moved into remission, and then recurrence, and now back into remission, I wrote here about different subjects. Some of my other passions (as you might have noticed from reading older posts) are my dogs, dog training, research, camping and cooking. This blog has become very personal, and for the most part, it’s still all about me. — From the page […]

6. Rotorhead - September 19, 2009

Thanks. I am kind of awesome.
-Rotorhead


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