The first Sunday of June is celebrated as Cancer Survivorship Day amongst many communities, particularly in the United States.
Let’s begin with the Question that defines Cancer patients themselves: ‘What is warrior mentality?’
Warrior mentality is often linked to determination, aggressiveness and strength. But it is much more than just that.:
True Warriors are an embodiment of the ability to overcome adversity and new challenges.
And that’s exactly why we celebrate this day.
For many who are facing a cancer diagnosis, and the tedious forms of treatment, being able to live such a life is a perfect example of Heroism.
Surviving cancer is nothing but easy, as we all know, but the survivors amongst us just know it better.
It all starts from the time of diagnosis….
The anxiety that comes along with the diagnosis is overwhelming- ‘Will I make it through??’, ‘Will I lose my hair?’, ‘Will I be able to afford the treatment?‘ are some of the thoughts that storm the mind of a cancer patient.
But this is just the beginning...
Next come the harsh forms of Treatment.
Cancer treatment as we know involves three main forms of therapy- Chemotherapy, Radiotherapy and Surgery; And each come with their own set of adversities.
Chemotherapy drugs are not just toxic to tumor cells but to normal cells too. They come along with a wide range of side effects that cancer patients have to live with over a time period that can last from months to years. Besides the side effects, come other issues such as change in physical appearence, social stigma and depression.
Inspite of all these hardships, the will to survive seen in cancer patients is nothing short of inspiring.
The main purpose of this day is to remind us that life after cancer can be a reality.
It was first celebrated on June 5th in 1988. It was celebrated mainly in the US and is now beginning to grow in popularity in other countries as well.
Winning over cancer is a victory for all those involved, right from the patient to friends and family to the healthcare providers. Beyond survival comes thriving over cancer, and that should be the main goal of every cancer survivor.