The MATCH Study: Mindfulness And Tai chi for Cancer Health. This innovative clinical trial conducted by the University of Calgary/Tom Baker Cancer Centre and the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre is now recruiting cancer survivors! As a participant you get to choose which treatment approach you want, or let us assign you to a group if you are equally interested in both. We will measure program effects on psychological, physical and biological outcomes including quality of life, mood, stress, balance, blood pressure, heart rate, immune function and more! Visit www.thematchstudy.ca for more details.
by Maryam Qureshi
Together with Young Adult Cancer Advocate Extraordinaire, Pat Taylor, we wanted to publish a new series this November to help raise awareness about Testicular Cancer. Our goal was to educate testicular cancer patients, survivors and caregivers about the post-treatment quality of life issues that may arise, of which many men might not be aware. If there is a stigma around this issue, we want to open it up and shed some light on it!!
We thank all the writers who took the time to write about their personal stories for the greater good – not an easy task!!
Please send us your comments and we’ll be sure to pass them along to the writers.
Table of Contents:
An Interview with Scott Slater by Pat Taylor
Oh Testicular Cancer, How I Hate Thee by Dan Duffy
An Interview with Connor O’Leary by Pat Taylor
Where’s the Light? by Nick O’Hara Smith
The Perfect Storm by Mike Craycraft
Cancer Survivorship – The Fight After the Fight and All of its Firsts by Steve Pake
A Caregiver’s Perspective by Jenna Jackson
by Pat Taylor, AYA Advocate, CKN Editor
Connor O’Leary was a nineteen year old professional cyclist competing in Europe when he discovered a lump on his testicle. As an advocate for AYA cancer awareness since my own daughter was diagnosed with cancer in 1997, I was stunned at how little I knew about testicular cancer and the men living with it. I needed to learn more. I needed to go to the source. My editor, Karen Irwin at CKN agreed and the idea for the TC Cancer Series was born.
Connor was one of the men I invited to join me for breakfast in Denver, Colorado while we were attending Stupid Cancer’s CancerCon 2017 Conference, to discuss the short and long term effects of living with a testicular cancer diagnosis. When Connor told me, “Nineteen year olds don’t want to talk about their parts to their mothers,” I knew that Connor would offer an important perspective to the series. What follows is my interview with Connor, testicular cancer survivor and Chief Mission Officer for the Testicular Cancer Foundation.
by Dan Duffy, Survivor, Advocate, Author
“I cheated with my cancer.”
A friend of mine said that to me once, feeling that she somehow didn’t really go through cancer because hers was caught so early, with no chemo or radiation necessary.
“So the double mastectomy doesn’t count?” I asked, needling her. (Cancer patients can do this to each other.)
by Nick O’Hara Smith, Writer, Director, Advocate, Survivor
We men are primed to expect. We expect to be healthy, fertile, strong and pretty much invulnerable. We can do crazy things, dally with danger and head for the extreme with that same expectation that all will be well.
That was me in 1988 when suddenly I found a tiny lump on my right testicle. Four weeks later, I lost both of my precious testicles, (thankfully a very rare occurrence).
by Steve Pake, Advocate, Survivor
Cancer Survivorship – The Fight After the Fight and All of its Firsts
After our fights with cancer are over, we all want so badly to believe that everything is behind us and that life is going to get back to normal. Those first weeks and months after our cancer fights are such a precious time. It’s our first taste of freedom after having been wrongfully held hostage by cancer for so long. I had my life back, but as time and the months went on I realized that it wasn’t my old life that I had back, but rather an entirely new one. Cancer survivorship brings with it an entirely new set of life circumstances and a whole lot of firsts, many of which I was completely unprepared to handle or to deal with at all.