HEARTS for Breast Cancer Prevention

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Hello, can you put a ♥ on your wall, without comment, only a ♥, then forward this message to your female contacts. Also, please put one ♥ on the wall of the woman who sent you this private message. If anyone asks why you have so many ♥s on your wall do not answer. It’s for women only to remember it’s the week of breast cancer prevention! Go check your boobies!! ♥Hold your finger down on this message and hit forward…

Thanks, but no thanks. This is one of the lamest things I’ve ever gotten sent to me on Facebook, well, besides annoying requests to play Candy Crush, or an earnest message I once received from a lonely widow from Macedonia asking if I would please be his wife. I’m all for immigration and unrequited love, but not so much from this Balkan stranger. As for playing Candy Crush… bite me.

I’m sorry, but when is it that we shouldn’t be practicing breast cancer prevention? Nobody is immune from the possibility of getting breast cancer. Is it only a ♥ on someone’s Facebook wall that would prompt you to even think about getting your boobies checked? Shouldn’t we adults already know that monthly self-examinations and regular mammograms are par for the course? That making lifestyle choices that are preventative like a healthy diet, exercise, not smoking, limiting alcohol consumption, taking vitamins and herbs are all good practices we should be engaged in on a regular basis.

I’m sure all the women who’ve sent me this breast cancer prevention ♥ have very good intentions, and I do appreciate the sentiment, but that’s all it is – a sentiment.

What would really captivate me to forward on something is a meaningful call to action. It could be a request to enroll a few friends and yourself to all make appointments for mammograms the same week and share your results. I’m always a fan of accountability partners in order to get things done that scare you. Or an even more important call to action, especially now in our current distressing political climate, could be a well thought out plan with a script and contact information to reach out to your representatives to do what they can to save the ACA. The grim reality for anyone who has cancer, or a history of cancer, is the frightening prospect of losing the protection of insurance companies not being able to deny coverage or charge more for people with preexisting conditions. This is literally a matter of life and death for us. Not to mention, if they can return to imposing yearly or lifetime caps on coverage this will be the financial ruin for a majority of people who are currently in treatment, or to the survivors who might have a reoccurrence.

And finally, what about other types of cancer prevention? I get that breast cancer is more prevalent than many other cancers, but get real. What about ovarian, lung, pancreatic, colon, brain, skin or bone cancers? Leukemia, prostate, throat, lymphoma, tongue, bladder or kidney cancers? Shouldn’t preventing all cancers matter? As a person who had Triple Negative breast cancer, I understand it’s a more aggressive form of cancer and typically has worse outcomes, however, in my mind, getting any type of cancer pretty much sucks and they all can kill you just the same.

Global cancer rates continue to rise due to many different factors, so besides research, clinical trials and advances in modern medicine, the best we can personally do to combat this is make positive lifestyle changes, be engaged in the political process to not only look out for our own healthcare needs but for those of our fellow citizens – it really does make for a happier, healthier and more prosperous society when we all have access to affordable care. Let’s do these substantive actions with our ♥s rather than just posting a symbol of a ♥ to show we care and see what a difference actual kind-hearted and focused proactivity makes.

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~ Cat Gwynn

I am a participant in Cynvenio’s TNBC non-invasive ClearID liquid biopsy study to monitor participants and identify early signs of metastasis. To learn more about ClearID, please click on: clearidmonitoring.com.

#CatGwynn #10-MileRadius #RareBirdBooks #WellAgain #Cynvenio #ClearIDMonitoring

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