Thinking about October, 2022

Every year around this time, I start to see lots and lots and lots of ads about breast cancer and breast cancer awareness — to be honest, it starts earlier and earlier each year. October is the month that is set aside for Breast Cancer Awareness month (BCAM) and whenever I start to think that I’ve seen it all, there’s another company or another group or another entity of some kind jumping in. Don’t get me wrong, this is both a good and a bad thing.

I’ve a love/hate relationship with #BCAM, pink, and #Pinktober and all the things that happen around BCAM.

On the one hand, we all need for the general public to be educated about the risks for developing breast cancer and the experience of living with breast cancer because none of us in this experience wants anyone else to go through it. On the other hand, those of us who are Stage IV and are facing a truncated life expectancy are often left out and much of what is done during the month of October just doesn’t resonate with us as a community. On the other other hand, so many of the companies getting attention for participating in BCAM in one way or another are really just pocketing the money rather than actually funding research.

I think some of this is getting better or maybe I’m just better at staying in the places where #MBC isn’t a dirty word and where those of us living while dying aren’t the pink elephants in the room. Maybe.

As I think about this October, the 6th BCAM I’ve experienced since my de novo MBC diagnosis in 2017, I find that I’m getting tired of loading up the month with efforts to educate and bring awareness to MBC. There are only so many spoons these days and maybe I’ve paid my dues or maybe it’s just that I’m weary of saying and doing the same things over and over without seeing the needle move much. So, this year, I’m pulling back, taking a bit of a break to focus on some key projects that I think will best serve the MBC Community. I may or may not blog about those initiatives during the month of October or I may “just” focus on hoarding some of those spoons for the people who matter the most to me.

One thing I know that I’ll be doing is getting together with the local MBC Community to celebrate the ONE day that is set aside during BCAM for those of us living with Stage IV MBC. If you are in the Orlando (or Central Florida) area and want to join us, you can access the invite here.

17 thoughts on “Thinking about October, 2022

  1. It upsets me, and I don’t have MBC, so I take my hat off to you for staying in the room for so many years during #Pinktober. Hoard those spoons and use them with those you love.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I thought I was joining this blog to be uplifted by this group but I have found mostly negativity like “Those of us who are facing Stage IV and are facing a truncated life expectancy”, “living while dying”. And where did you get MBC is a dirty word?
    So if you’re “tired of loading up month with efforts to educate and bring awareness to MBC” stop doing it. The best way to serve the MBC community is to stay positive especially after you’ve had it since 2017. Now that’s an encourager for MBC.
    I am living with Stage IV MBC -HER 2 positive and I’d like to stay positive while still being educated.
    What you’ve said here today is not positive nor does it make me want to continue this blog.


    1. No, it’s real. She never said she was writing a blog to be positive. She said she was writing it to be real and share her experience. I don’t share your diagnosis, but I do have the same reaction to anybody telling me to stay positive, pray more, it’ll get better, and similar comments.

      I specifically like this blog because it doesn’t lie. It’s real, it’s raw and it’s for her, the people who need to read it, and for her family to have memories of who she is.

      I am grateful for this blog and it’s real talk, and I wish you both the best. Nobody is walking an easy path right now. But I would ask you why you’re reading this blog and taking the time to write about it when you’re telling her not to write about something she didn’t enjoy.

      Abigail, save your spoons. ❤️


  3. Having read your extensive coverage of BCAM for a few years now, I can certainly see why you feel you need a break. I am continually enlightened by your writings and uplifted by your sensibilities. I suspect that your perfectionism is making you feel you’re shirking your responsibilities by not replicating what you’ve done in the past. But if you need a rest, that’s most important.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I couldn’t agree more. If we’re going to have pink and all that comes with it, we need to widen the spectrum of breast cancer survivorship. I’ve been twice diagnosed with breast cancer (in 1993 and 2004), and it baffles me how very little the BCA movement has evolved in nearly three decades, at least in its acknowledgement of diverse narratives. Perhaps we as a society don’t want to recognize a more complex set of diseases!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I am feeling the same advocacy weariness this year. I am also grieving my special Aussie dog who passed away on Sept 19, while I was at a PET scan two hours away. Trying to move forward to do my part as a State Captain with METAvivor’s Stage IV stampede, but it’s very rough. Glad you’re out of the hospital.

    Liked by 2 people

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