Sunday, July 25, 2010
Empowerment Rally Wrap up..
WOW. So I still can't believe that I was asked to be a part of a panel for the Cancer Treatment Centers of America on social media and how to be an empowered patient. Even when I was there I was almost expecting a knock on the door from someone saying whoops, er, ah,we didn't mean to invite you, we made a mistake...
It was such an amazing experience to be a part of a panel, and humbling to be asked. I spent the day with four other survivors, Joe Bacal, Lani Horn, Jody Schoeger and Matt Zachary. This was the first time I had met these survivors in real life, otherwise we have just communicated via the virtual world, texting or by phone. Matt Zachary I have known the longest. I started blogging on his stupid cancer blog and owe him a lot because of that. Meeting everyone and listening to their experiences was just so awesome.
We met the pr group to go over the ins and outs of the rally, toured the hospital, which didn't feel like a hospital, learned about how the hospital was founded, and went on what they called "Hope Rounds" before the rally.
Hope rounds were my favorite. That is where we walked around the hospital and met other survivors going through treatment, for most CTCA is their last resort, most have already been told you have 6 months to live (so they are stage 3 & 4 survivors), get your affairs in order, or have been misdiagnosed. Meeting these people and having them share their stories was incredible. Telling them about my story gave them a little more hope, at least that is what I think. I do hope I made an impact on at least one of the people I shared my story with.
The rally lasted an hour, all 5 of us were asked various questions pertaining to our treatment, doctors, survivorship etc. It could have lasted all day. We each have so much to share, so much to teach, so much to learn.
I posted pictures on facebook of the rally and tweeted about it. Several people called me a hero, and said they were proud of what I do. That makes me a little uncomfortable.
I don't consider myself a hero. I just do what needs to be done.
Mel is the producer/co~host of The Vic McCarty Show. Listen live 10am-noon Monday-Friday on wmktthetalkstation.
Check out my podcast The Cancer Warrior on Empoweradio.com available on demand now and also available on itunes.