Faded Ribbon

My little pink Ribbon has faded a bit. Just some ramblings about dealing with stage 4 breast cancer

Friday, September 30, 2005

That time of year

It's "that time of year" once again. Breast cancer awareness month. I personally do not need anyone to remind me that breast cancer is out there. It's in here too. In my chest and my back, I cannot move most days without acknowledging it's presence.

My feelings are very mixed. I have several friends with other cancers who resent that we get a month, a ribbon, and once a year a whole lot of attention. I must admit that I am grateful to have a cancer that does get the research and funding. I know that I am alive because of that.
What bugs me is the manufacturers who try to make money off my disease. Slap a pink ribbon on it and tap a whole new market. I know there are those like Avon and Yoplait who give fortunes to the cause. Those at least put the money where the ribbon is. I am more wary of those who put the ribbon on their product and then are very vague as to why. Some will say a"a portion goes to the cause . Some are not even that specific. Some specify the exact cause, some say "breast cancer awareness" which I guess could just be that ribbon they slapped on. These days I read the fine print before I buy something just because it wears a pink ribbon.

My other pet peeve this time of year are the talk shows and news bits that get more wrong than right. They say things like "Mamograms prevent cancer", Come on folks learn the difference of basic words.. Prevention. Detection. Both important, but different. Or worse are those right winged folks who say that "abortion causes it". I never had an abortion, and know few breast cancer patients who did.

I do support some products because they support the cause. I do wear several different shirts with the pink ribbon (I also have one that says "CANCER SUCKS"). But for now I will avoid the socks, notepads, and candy that wear the ribbon because it is the thing to do. Instead I will DO something. I will walk, answer phones and write what checks I can. I will share my story.



At 9:15 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

It's interesting that before breast cancer I wanted to support the cause and wear the ribbon and buy the products. Now I struggle with understanding the fine line between commercialism vs. awareness. I guess as long as it's keeping it in the forefront of people's minds, then it can't be all bad. I just dislike the idea that many are profitting from it. So do I sit back and take a break with the chocolate candies and the pink grapefruit tea after I have showered with a pink-ribboned product and put on a jogging suit emblazoned with the ribbon? Not likely. But we don't need to wear the ribbon. It's permanently etched on us. *We* bring awareness to the world. But I am glad that everyone gets the chance to contribute to cure. We all have to do our part.

At 7:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I might have to say that right now I feel like this breast cancer awareness has been commercialized too way too much. It is very important to aware the community but the way the cancer awareness is spreading is at some point a "not good reminder" for breast cancer patients. I'm a lung cancer patient myself and I wish there was more awareness for lung cancer, anti-tobacco commercials etc... but I know if it was the same way as this 'october' thing I would feel like at some point 'depressed' for having a whole month of *ding ding* my cancer awareness month... (I have struggles accepting my disease though)

But I have to give much credit because more women are detecting their cancers earlier and we are saving more lives. I think it is not about wearing a pink ribbon at all, it is about to feel it and to think about it; although for us cancer patients and for specially you b.cancer survivors the ribbon is already attached to ourselves and like Jeannette said: "we bring awareness to the world".

I hope you have a nice week, you have a really nice blog though. I admire your courage, LIVESTRONG!

At 9:50 PM, Blogger Mary said...

Good to see another with the same outlook on the awareness and overdone part of breast cancer ribbons, shirts, etc etc etc. It has gotten to be way too much. And it has really kicked off since so many celebrities have been diagnosed with breast cancer now. But like all things I guess there is good and bad in everything. I just hope that too much hype doesn't end up burning people out and making them tune out.

And yes indeed, the steroids are still running strong. Sorry that you had such a strong reaction to the chemos. That had to have been very scarey. But I am glad you are alright! You are also right about nurses. They are our rocks!

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