Every day the scenario is repeated: a person in a doctor’s office hears the word “cancer.” From that moment, his or her perspective of the world changes. They all know someone—a family member, relative, co-worker, neighbor—who has been diagnosed, undergone treatment, who is recovering from or is a survivor of cancer.
They know some of those outcomes have been positive…there is hope. But unfortunately, they also know there is loss. The loss may take many forms: loss of life, of livelihood, of body function or perhaps a portion of the body itself. At that moment in the clinic, for that individual and his/her loved ones, life changes. They are now part of a growing group: people affected by cancer. The journey they take back toward some sense of normal life can be long and arduous. However, it’s not a journey that must be taken alone. Help, support and guidance are available.
UTMB recently celebrated cancer survivorship by hosting several events across campus including a Lunch & Lecture session on cancer survivorship; several participatory workgroups on exercise, stress management and nutrition, and a keynote lecture featuring Carolyn (Cad) Dennehy, professor emeritus at the University of Northern Colorado and cofounder of the Rocky Mountain Cancer Rehabilitation Institute.
The week culminated with a Celebration of Life ceremony where employees and family members created a human chain of cancer survivors. Celebrants joined hands and formed a circle on the lawn while the song, "A Wonderful World," played.
UTMB's Cancer Survivorship Program