Friday, December 9, 2011

What its like to survive

Another guest blogger. Enjoy.

What’s it like to survive? Have you or someone you really care about ever survived something that could have changed things forever?

Being a survivor sets you apart from other people in that you have a totally different view on things after “surviving”. No, I am not suggesting that we survivors are better than other people or anything like that; after all it’s friends and family who helped us survive, bring us through the hard times, and stand behind us as we continue on our journey. In a way, they survived too and are a part of the survival team. Think about it, a mom having to watch her child go through treatments for cancer? When that’s all over, you better believe she feels like a survivor also!

Survivors of car wrecks, wars and other diseases all know that they have, for some reason, been given a second chance; and I’d like to think that second chance, was not by “chance” exactly. Now my next comment is not to just show my fascination with conspiracy theories and secret clubs like the “Skull and Bones”, but I would like to think of survivors as being in their own little club too. (Unfortunately, we don’t rule the world though!)

As a survivor, first and foremost, we realize that we are temporary. No matter how great things are today and at this moment, we know that it can all change in an instant. We carry this attitude with us at all times. Whether we are at the Christmas party hanging out with friends and cutting up (break dancing in some cases), or at home relaxing with our families, our survival and what “could” and “could have” happened is always tucked away within us. We know that the unthinkable does not just happen to “other people.”

Now, this all shouldn’t read as the “poor little survivors”, because we are not “poor little survivors”; we are “blessed little survivors.” We now have a new appreciation for the smallest things, for all kinds of people that enter our life; we now take the time. That’s what it’s like to survive!

Ryan Hamner is a 4-time survivor of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and a singer-songwriter who travels performing and speaking to those affected by cancer. Please check out his new song, “Survivors Survive” online at and learn about his community for cancer survivors at .


  1. Great piece Ryan! So very true all around, thanks Mel for having Ryan guest blog. From one 4 time survivor to another, battling to be a 5 time survivor, keep making the small things count, I do everyday!

  2. As a 67-yr-old ovarian cancer survivor (so far) I've often wondered if younger cancer survivors also acquire that "knowledge that death is ahead". Even if it be 60 years down the road...that it has become more "real" that it is to one who has not experienced a deadly ailment or accident. Ryan, I pray that you continue to have decades of good health ahead of you. Bless you.

  3. Thanks everybody and thank you Mel for the opportunity!:)

  4. Very well written Ryan. Being a survivor is not an easy task. It needs to go through a lot of pain. Feeling proud of you. Nice sharing. Keep posting.
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