Isn’t this supposed to be the time of year that’s “full of cheer”? I don’t know about you, but these days I feel like night time comes right after lunch … and then there’s all the Christmas stuff. It’s sort of like “pink” in October … it’s everywhere and you can’t get away from it.
For me, Christmas has become a reminder of the way my life didn’t turn out because of breast cancer. Don’t get me wrong, I know there are many women out there dealing with situations far worse than my own and I’m not complaining. But when I see that darling little girl eagerly waiting to sit on Santa Claus’ lap, it feels like a punch in my stomach … it’s a reminder of the future I envisioned for myself and the family I thought I’d have by now. Even I, the CEO of YSC, feel scared as I navigate my “new normal” as a young breast cancer survivor, especially this time of year.
But, around the corner is a new year … and that means C4YW !
C4YW is the largest gathering of young women diagnosed with breast cancer in the world … and for the first time ever, it will be on the West Coast in 2013 (February 22-24)!
For me, C4YW is a reset button … It’s always at the beginning of the year and young women with breast cancer from around the world come together to reaffirm their determination of survival, remind themselves they are not alone and learn about the latest advances in research and medicine that occurred since the last C4YW.
– If you have attended before, you know what I mean … and maybe this is the year for you to come back.
– If you are newly diagnosed, this event will change your life – you will never look at your survivorship the same way.
– If you’ve thought about going for a few years, but never actually did … now is the time!
– If you care for or support a young woman affected by breast cancer, C4YW has workshops  just for you!
If you want to attend, but feel reluctant because you don’t know a soul – many attendees come to C4YW by themselves and leave with lifelong friends. Here’s an example: Mikala , diagnosed at 25, attended her first C4YW conference last year and has since become close friends with five other survivors in their 20s that she met there. Other women you’ll meet at C4YW are Lori , who supported herself by teaching belly dancing following her diagnosis and now conducts a belly dancing class at C4YW to help other survivors feel sexy. Nicole  is YSC’s West Coast Regional Field Manager who lives in Seattle. She can’t wait to welcome you to town and introduce you to the other women who will be at C4YW!
For each of you looking forward to the holidays, I wish you and those you love an amazing celebration!
But for those of you who, like me, are struggling with the holidays and can’t wait for them to be over, I wish you peace and comfort. Maybe now is the time to sign up for C4YW and plan a fun getaway for early 2013 … the thought that I’ll see many of you the last weekend in February brings a smile to my face and makes me feel “full of cheer”!
P.S. There’s still time to apply for travel grants !!!