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Last Thursday I completed the final session in my twelve-week “Livestrong” program at my local YMCA. This was a program that had come highly recommended to me from other members of my cancer support group, many of whom have continued with the alumni program which is offered under slightly different terms after the initial twelve-week session.

After completion of the program, I heartily agree with the endorsement of my sisters in the support group. I thoroughly enjoyed the sessions, so much so that I rarely missed one—which is a pretty good testimonial right there. I would say they even exceeded my expectations, because they not only helped me make another advance in my post-treatment recovery, they helped me reconnect with my old athletic and slightly competitive self.

I think it’s been fairly frequently acknowledged around here that once we have cancer, we have to deal in one way or another with a sense that our body has betrayed us. Never mind that (in my case, anyway) the betrayal was if anything the other way around—I had once been fit and active, but those days were long ago and far away. More recently I was surviving on 20 oz. bottles of Coke and small bags of potato chips while driving from work to home, with very limited opportunity for any physical exercise beyond walking. Something was bound to give, though I didn’t expect it to be cancer or to come so soon. Someone else with cancer who had always been extremely fit would have to comment about that circumstance, since that wasn’t my personal experience—but I expect in that case a diagnosis of cancer would really seem to be a bolt from the blue.

For me, all the slow and careful steps I have made in the past two years toward reclaiming my health, in whatever condition it will be, have indeed included a process of forgiving myself for the lack of care I have afforded myself, and the adoption of new habits that I hope will serve me better. And that, of course, is where the Livestrong program came in.

I hasten to add that I had not been entirely sedentary since my diagnosis, because (apart from my neuropathy, which fortunately for me subsided after some solid weeks of acupuncture treatments) I have had no cause to limit my physical activity. In fact, I started regular restorative yoga classes at around the same time I started my chemo treatments, and I think the former helped me get through the latter with as little harm as I did. Shortly after ending chemo, I started studying qi gong, which added another beneficial routine to my physical recovery. But of course neither one of these disciplines incorporated much aerobic activity for the sake of promoting cardio fitness.

Our Livestrong program at my local YMCA included both a cardio component and a strength-building component. During our first session, the personal trainers who were our professional guides for the twelve weeks had us complete a series of assessments that provided benchmarks for our cardiac capacity, our overall strength, and our flexibility and balance. Over the next twelve weeks, we learned how to set up the strength machines and to track our progress on them. (Here is where my long-dormant competitive drive manifests itself: I really feel motivated to keep increasing weights and reps. Funny how such a simple thing can keep me going.) During the 75 minutes of each session, I typically did 17 minutes on an elliptical machine, then all but the last 15 minutes on the strength-training equipment. The last 15 minutes were devoted to group time, so that the trainers could introduce other kinds of equipment (free weights, balance aids) and take us through a cool-down stretch.

During our sessions we really didn’t have the time—at least, I didn’t—to talk a lot with each other about what kind of cancer we had or what we had gone through by way of treatments. One of the breast cancer survivors has serious lymphadema, so she has to wear a compression sleeve and glove, but she was the only one who had any obvious markers of cancer—apart from those of us whose hair was still very, very short. For the most part, that made sense to me. How we got there was not nearly as important as what we were going to do now that we were here.

I will admit that sometimes I just didn’t feel terribly motivated to go. Perhaps I had something I wanted to do at home, or another activity that had to be rescheduled for the sake of attending the workout. But I will also attest that I always, always felt better (at least in terms of my mood) after I did go. Hooray for endorphins! Now, some days I would also come home very weary, so much so that I’d need a nap. That did make me wonder about the overall net good it does me—though not for very long. It was clear over time that having the regular workouts has improved my energy on the short term and my stamina over the long term.

I have one very homely anecdote to demonstrate that efficacy. A week or so ago, I took a carful of dirty linens (bedding and towels, mostly) to the laundromat. Our machines at home are just not big or sturdy enough to handle the oversize items even in good conditions, and lately they’ve been suboptimal. (We need to get our landlord to clear a plumbing block. Long story.) I was actually apprehensive about taking all that laundry over there because it’s a big job to get it all pushed through, dried, and folded. As it turned out, I had three extra-large (4x) loads, two large (3x) loads and two regular loads, so that was a lot of stuff. It took me about four hours of steady work, during which time I was almost always on my feet, to get it all done. But I did it. I wouldn’t have thought twice about it in the old days, but at this juncture it feels like a big accomplishment. I’m glad for that kind of validation of my efforts these past few months.

For the most part, our trainers (all women) were old hands with the whole process. Only one of them was new to Livestrong, and at least one of them has been with the program for the entire six years of its existence at this particular YMCA. (Ours had one of the first in the country, and at this point they’ve had 25 groups complete the intro session.)  Interestingly enough, all but one of the participants in our initial group of twelve was female, and the only man wound up dropping out only a couple of weeks along. Apparently the predominance of women in the group was not at all unusual. On occasion, when we were stretching at the close of a workout session it made a difference in terms of the tenor of our conversation, but otherwise I don’t think I noticed much. I will say, however, that I did enjoy working with the female trainers. They are all clearly fit, including the woman who is a grandmother in her 70s, but not exaggeratedly so; their level of comfort in their bodies gave me some reassurance that I can regain the fitness and comfort that I once enjoyed (or a reasonable facsimile thereof).

The trainers also clearly enjoyed working with us. One of them did acknowledge that it has its tough moments, working with cancer survivors, mostly because they have had some participants die (after their session, that is, which is painful enough). Awareness of the reality of our vulnerability, despite our eagerness to get stronger, must be present somewhere for the trainers, too. And so I am even more appreciative of the enthusiasm and commitment they were all able to demonstrate toward us, no matter where we started or how far we advanced.

Here’s a photo of some of us, with most of our trainers, on the last day of our session. The regulars comprised about 6 or 7 of the original 12, and a couple of them were absent the last day; we had “only” three of the four trainers then, too. Quite a ratio, roughly 3:1 most days; I can’t remember the last time I had personal attention to this extent. (The trainers are the two women in front on the exercise balls and the woman in the middle in the back row.)

YMCA Livestrong Group Winter 2013
My Livestrong-YMCA group, Winter 2013
I don’t mean for this diary to be only an unsolicited advertisement for Livestrong, but I’d might as well include some practical information about the program. Currently Livestrong programs like mine are being run out of YMCAs in 25 states. Here’s a link to a map of those sites.

Before I close out this section of the discussion, let me mention one other very important aspect of the twelve-week program: IT WAS FREE. Not only was the program free, but parking was also covered. And not only that, but I had free access to the rest of the Y as a full member for the duration of the program. And not only that, but my family also had membership privileges, for free, for that time period. Unfortunately we didn’t use those bennies much, but they are a great idea. I don’t know whether all these would be true for programs run out of other Ys, but it’s worth checking.

The only requirements for joining, as I recall, were that I had to be out of active treatment—that is, out of chemo and radiation, since I am taking hormones—and that my doctor had to sign off on my participation.

Please join me over the squiggle for a brief exposition of the big picture of “bodies in motion.”

Monday Night Cancer Club is a Daily Kos group focused on dealing with cancer, primarily for cancer survivors and caregivers, though clinicians, researchers, and others with a special interest are also welcome. Volunteer diarists post Monday evenings between 7-8 PM ET on topics related to living with cancer, which is very broadly defined to include physical, spiritual, emotional and cognitive aspects. Mindful of the controversies endemic to cancer prevention and treatment, we ask that both diarists and commenters keep an open mind regarding strategies for surviving cancer, whether based in traditional, Eastern, Western, allopathic or other medical practices. This is a club no one wants to join, in truth, and compassion will help us make it through the challenge together.

I love moments of serendipity, like the one last week that prompted me to look at the latest issue of Cure magazine on the table at my local Cancer Support Community. It wasn’t a cover story even, but there was an informative article about the benefits of exercise in that issue (Fall, 2012, to be exact).

Somehow I had missed this finding, but apparently earlier that year the results of a major study on the effects of diet and exercise were published, the gist of them being that exercise does appear to have a positive correlation with longer-term survival and longer progression-free status, as well as improved “quality of life.” If you’re interested, the whole study is available to read online here. It’s a surprisingly informative as well as readable report, and it does supply specific information related to a few of the more common cancers (including mine, which always makes me happy, oddly enough.)

This is one important segment (footnotes and sources available in original):

Exercise has been shown to improve cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength, body composition, fatigue, anxiety, depression, self-esteem, happiness, and several components of quality of life (physical, functional, and emotional) in cancer survivors. In addition, exercise studies have targeted certain symptoms particular to specific cancers and the adverse effects of specific therapies (eg, lymphedema in survivors of breast cancer) and shown beneficial effects that are more cancer-specific. At least 20 prospective observational studies have shown that physically active cancer survivors have a lower risk of cancer recurrences and improved survival compared with those who are inactive, although studies remain limited to breast, colorectal, prostate, and ovarian cancer, and randomized clinical trials are still needed to better define the impact of exercise on such outcomes.
And this is another:
For aerobic physical activity, the ACSM [American College of Sports Medicine] panel recommended that survivors follow the US Department of Health and Human Services 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. According to those guidelines, adults aged 18 to 64 years should engage in at least 150 minutes per week of moderate intensity or 75 minutes per week of vigorous intensity aerobic physical activity, or an equivalent combination of moderate and vigorous intensity aerobic physical activity.... Some activity is better than none and exceeding the guidelines is likely to provide additional health benefits. Activity should be done in episodes of at least 10 minutes per session and preferably spread throughout the week. Furthermore, adults should do muscle-strengthening activities involving all major muscle groups at least 2 days per week. Adults aged older than 65 years should also follow these recommendations if possible, but if chronic conditions limit activity, older adults should be as physically active as their abilities allow and avoid long periods of physical inactivity.
As with many other studies, there is an element of “well, of course” associated with this one, I think—but perhaps I shouldn’t be so cynical about research or so confident about the obvious benefits of exercise. We have had several MNCCers write about how important exercise was to their recovery already, both for their morale as well as for their physical strength. [Alas—I am having trouble finding ANY of them, so I do hope that the original writers, or those who remember the discussions, can help us all out. My apologies.] This seems particularly true for people who were really invested in being fit beforehand. But I think those of us who are coming to it late or after some time away can also be readily persuaded of its beneficial aspects.

It will take me a while, probably into the summer, to gradually increase my aerobic times to meet the goals prescribed above, but I am already there with the muscle-strengthening activities. Beyond that, I hope to be more active than usual this summer--getting out on the river to kayak, and doing some hiking above and beyond the city and park walks that I already do. We'll see.

So now the time has come for you-all to fess up about your own regimes and why you like them (or not). I’m including a poll to get things started. (It’ll be interesting to see how closely we match the results published in the Cure article. No peeking!) If you’re not exercising regularly, what are the barriers that keep you from doing so? What do you think you would need to get you moving?


What is your favorite (most often done) form of exercise?

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11%2 votes
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| 18 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Hi, everyone, and welcome. (18+ / 0-)

    Tonight I'm doing dual duty again, since I have an Okiciyap Quilt diary to tend as well. But I'll certainly be able to pop back and forth without difficulty. I'm looking forward to reading what you all have to say about this topic & to reading the results of the poll.

    Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

    by peregrine kate on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 04:29:03 PM PDT

  •  Hey, tough gal! (10+ / 0-)

    I'm glad to see you get back to your "athletic and competitive" self! My doctor gets on my ass about "exercise" and he says that "work doesn't count". I try to convince him that climbing ladders all day outside should count for something, and I still cut and split my firewood and do all the mechanical stuff for my family.
    It's not "aerobic".
    So I hung a heavy bag in the barn and beat the crap out of it regularly.
    So love to all, especially you, PK, and have a great week!

  •  Nice work, Kate! (11+ / 0-)

    You're so brave--and energetic.

    I haven't gotten much beyond "I've got to start working out."

    "I speak the truth, not as much as I would, but as much as I dare, and I dare a little the more, as I grow older." --Montaigne

    by DrLori on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 05:38:13 PM PDT

  •  Please take a moment to visit Sara R's diary (10+ / 0-)

    on behalf of a community quilt for Clytemnestra. She needs only 13 messages and a little over $100 to get started.
    Dear Clytemnestra is facing some serious health challenges and needs all the support we can offer. Doesn't matter if you feel you know her well, or at all. The messages of encouragement and companionship help all the same. Thanks in advance!

    Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

    by peregrine kate on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 05:40:43 PM PDT

  •  It's been a good week. (10+ / 0-)

    I ran into an old friend on the soccer field...she was diagnosed with uterine cancer just about the same time my colon exploded - she was in far worse shape than I for a time.  She's all done with chemo now too, and even grew back some of her hair.  She was up and about and shivering on the field waiting for her son to finish practice.  It's all good - she's beaten back the beast for now.

    Last Wednesday, I saw another friend at the Scout Meeting.  He's in active chemo now for leukemia and is facing a bone marrow transplant....but we hadn't seen him around in months and for him to get up and come to a meeting was a victory.

    As far as the quip about being extremely healthy and getting cancer....I was fit as a fiddle, fairly active through scouts and work (I'm a kayak instructor in the summer) and was not even visiting my doctor every year (at his recommendation - he said every 3 or so the last time), when my appendix attacked out of the blue.  They opened me up to take it out, and lo and behold, stage III tumor!!!

    But then again, I'm a tough old cuss - I never stopped doing anything and even climbed a mountain the day after a treatment cycle.  (And almost killed myself trying.)

    I never stopped doing anything, and I think that helped with my frame of mind as well as surviving the treatment.

    But anyway...

    I prefer to remain an enigma.

    by TriSec on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 06:11:22 PM PDT

    •  Glad to hear of your good week. But it is sobering (7+ / 0-)

      isn't it, to have many people around us also dealing with cancer now that we have our own diagnoses? Makes me wonder how many people are simply keeping it quiet as long as they can.
      It is quite common for people to have no real symptoms until relatively late in the game. Seems unfair.
      Keep up that cussedness; it seems to work for you! ;)

      Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

      by peregrine kate on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 06:19:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  There was nothing for me in the poll. (6+ / 0-)

    I don't like to exercise. I like to read, watch TV and movies, talk to people and listen to music. None of which burns calories.

    And frankly, I don't think that's fair. Who do I complain to?

    Tracy B Ann - technically that is my signature.

    by ZenTrainer on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 08:07:21 PM PDT

  •  Well, my dears, it is my bedtime again. (6+ / 0-)

    Thanks to all those who stopped by tonight. Maybe we'll see more traffic overnight? Guess we'll have to see.

    Meanwhile, here is the list of proposed diary topics, with potential writers in parentheses:

    Cancer and PTSD
    Cancer and Depression
    Cancer and Anxiety
    Race and Class Disparities in Cancer Survival
    Clinical Trials (murasaki)
    Cancer and Genetic Testing
    Cancer and Environmental "Hot Spots"
    Cancer and Patient Advocates
    Politics of Cancer (ZenTrainer)

    Of course, these are not hard and fast commitments; life happens. But if I've missed anyone, my apologies. Please let me know if one of these, or another topic altogether, piques your interest.

    I'm not sure what I'll cover next week. With luck, my big news will be a continued NED--since I have my next scan on Monday the 8th. Either way, I have to warn you not to expect a big diary from me. It'll be a long day.

    Peace and blessings to all, as usual. May we all enjoy a warm, sunny, and healthy week, wherever we may be.

    Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

    by peregrine kate on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 08:40:10 PM PDT

  •  This diary was actually very timely for me. (7+ / 0-)

    I have been wondering for a few days if cancer support groups were a good thing or not.

    Sort of, do they fit in with the current profit driven medical model that is forced on us (even if they are non profit).

    And what other good could these folks be doing if big pharma would forget about profit and work on a cure rather than treatment.

    Even though I really like my local Gilda's club and have gotten a lot of mental, emotional and physical support from them.

    So it's nice to read the tangible effect Livestrong has had on you.

    Our Y has an ABC program, (After Breast Cancer) that sounds similar. Free for 16 weeks.

    Tracy B Ann - technically that is my signature.

    by ZenTrainer on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 08:57:01 PM PDT

    •  It's worth a try. You don't have to do the whole (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ZenTrainer, hazey

      thing if you start it and find it isn't for you after all.

      Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

      by peregrine kate on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 08:03:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I would have to say gardening, (7+ / 0-)

    and by that I mean industrial strength gardening.

    Last week a section of a retaining wall came down. p50 knocked the rest of it down with a sledgehammer, removed the rubble, bought those interlocking blocks that are like, 40 pounds each, and rebuilt the wall, all while I was merrily pulling weeds and planting lettuces.

    A year ago at this time he could barely get out of bed.

    Oh, I used to be disgusted
    Now I try to be amused
    ~~ Elvis Costello

    by smileycreek on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 09:30:00 PM PDT

  •  Hi peregrine kate, (8+ / 0-)

    great topic tonight and well timed. I continued working out through most of my treatment, even when I felt zapped of energy. I took a few breaks, not more than 2-3 weeks at a time when I felt my mood lowering and getting going in the morning was a big problem (I'm a grouch in the mornings even without a cancer diagnosis). I just met with my Oncologist on Friday and she praised me for continuing to work out and noted that exercise as a part of my life is vital to cognitive functioning. I'm bringing this up because one of the side effects of the tomaxafen is memory loss. I described to my doc that I seem hazy, can't think up the right words, don't want to think things through - all common with the tomaxafen. I've been quite distressed about this because it really does impact my work, which then impacts my confidence and on and on.

    Tomorrow morning I'm heading back to Pilates and weight training. I'm your lone Pilates vote. I started Zumba again but find the dances boring. Why they always discontinue the best dances I'll never know. Cardio is the hardest for me. Exertion makes my heart pound and for a few moments I feel so deeply tired through and through I want to cry and then it lifts and I move on.

    I met with an Ayrudevic healer the other week and she told me my body was exhausted. I've questioned radiation fatigue over and over; for some reason I thought I'd be successful in circumventing it and continuing life as usual. Well, I don't think I have. I think I've done well but I didn't circumvent it. I felt some relief that she observed this and brought it to my attention. It lifted the uncertainty of that which I didn't want to accept and allowed me to just feel tired and have it be OK.

    Last weekend was horrible, just 2 days ago actually. I was so tired I wanted to stop cooking but I didn't and you know, when one's emotional cup is full, fatigue runneth over the cup and I lost it. I had an adult temper tantrum. Poor Glen and Maya. The next day was much better.

    Thanks for the space to talk about this and I'm glad you are doing well. Congratulations on completing the course.

    "Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass... it is about learning to dance in the rain." ~ Vivanne Grenne

    by remembrance on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 09:54:56 PM PDT

    •  Thanks for coming by, remembrance, and I'm glad (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      remembrance, hazey

      the topic is a timely one for you.
      I did not realize that memory loss is a problem that people have with tamoxifen. That is a bummer. Seems like the last thing that people would need!
      I don't know that I said this explicitly above, despite all I did say. But exercise, and feeling my body's underlying strength again, has been very reassuring to me. Makes me more confident that I will continue to have a future of some length.
      I really like Pilates, too. It's been some years since I've done it, but the core strengtheners can't be beat. What I really need to do is to design my own fitness program, being as eclectic as I please. Fingers crossed that I can and will do that.
      And I LOVE Ayurveda! I've been seeing an Ayurvedic healer for about 18 months now. Hard to believe it's been so long, since it's been such a busy time. My practitioner has focused on oils, herbs (in tea), diet, and breathing; apparently there's quite a repertoire of treatments, and other people do different things. I think it's been a major component of my return to NED. Well, to the extent that I have been compliant, that is.
      Fatigue is hard, no question about it. I get hit from the after-effects of chemo, even all this time afterwards, and from the hormones I'm taking. (Is that maybe another issue from the tamoxifen?) I wish I had more zip than I do, but I just don't.
      I will say that over time, very gradually, I do notice improvement. Slow but steady, I think. Not all that helpful when I'm impatient, but at least there's some forward motion. I hope that you have the chance to see some improvement like that yourself.
      Oh, I have had some pretty good (or bad) meltdowns myself. So frustrating when you know that you really can't help yourself, and you really can't stop in the middle either! {{{{{remembrance}}}}} Good thing that our spouses (and children) have some perspective when we don't.
      Cancer is a big huge bump in the road. Even though some of us are able to proceed with some confidence that it'll be a one-time problem, the residual effects still pack a punch. Honestly, I wish that people in general would appreciate that better. The attitude of most people around me (not my immediate family, fortunately) is, Well, since you're better, you must be ALL better. If only it worked that way!
      Take care, my dear, and be kind and loving toward yourself.

      Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

      by peregrine kate on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 08:21:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I finally got here ! (6+ / 0-)

    I have too have become a convert to regular exercise.  

    As folks may (or may not)  I have been "in the gym"  since the middle of October to rehabilitate my lungs after a bought of pneumonia.  I think that I have received huge benefits from the effort.  Especially all the time I spent in the gym before my surgery.  Now that I am back on the treadmill, I KNOW beyond a doubt that this daily work effort is helping me to recover from surgery.  

    Since the gym that I go to is a pulmonary rehabilitation gym for lung patients, they track my oxygen saturation levels all the time during my workouts.  My oxygen saturation levels have shown slow steady improvement since March 6th when I returned to gym activities.  When I began on the 6th,  I would have only 91% saturation levels after 20 minutes on the treadmill at the speed of 0.7 MPH.  Now I am able to go for 30 minutes at the same speed but my saturation levels are now 94-95%. This is with supplemental oxygen from a portable tank flowing at the rate of 2.5 liters per second but as soon as I can sustain saturation levels of 98-99% we will begin the tapering down the flow rates on the oxygen tanks.  

    The ultimate goal is to no longer need supplemental oxygen how soon I get there is not very important, just that I get there.

    Lung cancer patients have traditionally not been prescribed exercise before or after surgery; conventional wisdom was that since the lungs are so central to circulation,  that "you would just spread the cancer that much faster". Well, it sure does not look like it to me or as far as I am concerned.  This study that PK shares with us I think will eventually change the lung cancer treatment community views on exercise too.  for me, I think it has been instrumental in my success with treatment.

    Life is not a problem to be solved but an adventure to be experienced.

    by DarkHawk98 on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 11:03:42 PM PDT

  •  Just one of those weeks (5+ / 0-)

    My frail 84-year old father was admitted to the ICU late last night - intubated but writing notes.  All my siblings are heading home to spend some quality time.   So 500 mile drive today.  Still need to pack.  But I made a list!  so that counts for a lot.

    I recently was going through old emails and realized that I hadn't heard from my friend Kelly in some time so I called her and got a recording... so I googled her and discovered she died one year after her diagnosis.  I had met her through an online support group, and we met in person when she was visiting her mom near San Antonio.  I'm feeling regret that I didn't keep in better touch, and pissed that she died so soon.  Fucking cancer.

    I'm reading a very inspirational book about a near death experience of a woman with lymphoma, Dying to Be Me, by Anita Moorjani.  My Unity pastor recommended it, and it is very comforting to me:
    We are one person,
    We are two alone,
    We are three together,
    We are for each other.

    Look deep into nature, and you will understand everything better. Albert Einstein

    by Carol in San Antonio on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 02:17:00 AM PDT

    •  {{{{{Carol in San Antonio and father}}}}} (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      So sorry your dad is seriously ill. I hope that he gets excellent care and that he can recover from whatever is ailing him. I'll be keeping you both in my thoughts today.

      Oh, that is too bad about your friend. Fucking cancer indeed. Hate it.

      I read that book too--standing in a bookstore once. I couldn't put it down. It is an amazing story. Truly amazing. Not for the seriously positivist folks among us, but compelling to me. Thanks for mentioning it.

      Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

      by peregrine kate on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 08:26:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Way to go, PK (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    peregrine kate, ZenTrainer, hazey

    Exercise is a great way to fight back, both physically and emotionally. The LiveStong program sounds awesome. Thanks for sharing your story.

    Be radical in your compassion.

    by DWG on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 05:00:12 AM PDT

    •  Thanks, DWG. I'm really glad I did it. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ZenTrainer, DWG, hazey

      Now the big challenge will be to see whether I get to the gym during their "off" weeks, before the alumni program starts. We'll see!

      Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

      by peregrine kate on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 08:06:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Two things make exercise easier (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        peregrine kate, hazey

        Making it habit and doing it with others. Workout pals give added incentive to go to the gym and make it more fun. Sounds like you have the makings of a great group there.

        Be radical in your compassion.

        by DWG on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 08:28:20 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Quite so. I know a number of the alumni (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          hazey, DWG

          (actually, alumnae) already, so I'm probably ahead of the game there. And having the trainers around also helps.

          Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

          by peregrine kate on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 08:33:07 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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