I am beginning to believe the only thing missing from cancer support groups is people with cancer.
There seem to be plenty of bubbly, smiling, well-intentioned, un-diagnosed people ready to facilitate these meetings and provide printed materials heavy on broad spectrum, generalized palliatives for those working through the cancer experience.
Most of those well-intentioned folks I encountered seemed to hand out their life-coach quality wares as a means for fending off the fact that what ailed me could sometime soon ail them, too. They might as well have worn a garlic necklace as a protection from this evil.
From my first cancer diagnosis – yes, I now have two- I quickly learned that others similarly situated weren’t particularly interested in talking with fellow travelers about their experiences. My amateur attempts to begin a support group among diagnosed friends and associates was met with a resounding silence and a roughly zero buy-in.
I guess none of us see each other as having anything to offer in the way of advice, insight or inspiration for this journey and this is a fair argument to make.
Regardless of how many well-intentioned people stand at the ready to instruct us to ‘fight the battle’ and be photographed giving two thumbs-up to make them feel more comfortable about themselves, cancer is a solitary endeavor and we have few weapons with which to battle anything.
The treatment either works, or it doesn’t no matter how many bubbly, smiling, well-intentioned, un-diagnosed people are assigned to say otherwise.
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