Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Lung cancer

Do you know anyone who has been diagnosed with lung cancer?  How can you not; it seems like an epidemic anymore.

Has someone that you love died of this terrible disease?  Again, how can you not - it's every-frigging-where.

Have you ever been involved in a conversation with someone when you've related the information about this friend or relative who is struggling with the disease only to be asked "was he/she a smoker?"

If you were to answer "yes" does that mean they deserved to be stricken?

I had a friend some years ago that said she was a bit jealous of all the attention that breast cancer got.  Not that it didn't deserve it but she felt as though lung cancer was put on the back burner cuz - well - they smoked so what did they expect?

I said "had" because my friend isn't around anymore to have discussions with - she's dead and I miss her very much.

I wish everyone would stop smoking.  I hate to see people drawing poison into their lungs.  I hate the smell.  I hate to see butts thrown all over the damn place but do those people deserve to get cancer?  Hell no!

A doctor friend of mine told me that it used to be just men that he saw in his practice that had lung cancer but recently the number of women had increased alarmingly.  Non-smoking women.  

Someone else I loved very, very much died 10 months after being diagnosed.  A non-smoker.  I thought we would spend many more Christmases together.  Never in a million years did I see that coming.

My point is - the next time you hear of someone living with or has recently died because of lung cancer, please hold yourself back from asking the "were they a smoker" question because it translates into "they got what they deserved."

Oh, and while I have your attention - I wish we could abolish the phrase "he/she lost the battle."  That one makes me cross eyed.  No one's a loser - they led the fight.

1 comment:

  1. Ellen, I am late reading this, but agree with you here. Some cancers, like breast cancer, do seem to get more attention. I have a dear friend whose then 7 year old daughter has was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a brain tumor. She survived the surgery and 8+ years later is doing well. Prognosis for something like this is usually grim. Recurrence within 5 years is common, and almost always more difficult to treat. Pediatric cancer gets a lot of face time (look at all the promotional material from major cancer societies). I mean, who isn't impacted by the images of children suffering? BUT, look at where the money goes. Not to pediatric cancer research. Research is significantly underfunded. While they use the images to hit us square in our emotional core and raise money, they don't spend as much on it, because fewer cases occur each year. Bait and switch tactics. I'm careful with where i donate.

    Your last paragraph hit home. My father died from pancreatic cancer. He led his fight. And when he was done, he passed the torch to the next one, to further the fight. The fight continues to this day.

    Todd in Destin