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Fall Mesothelioma Awareness: Miles for Meso

Heather Von St. James at Miles 4 Meso

September is filled with a lot of wonderful opportunities to support mesothelioma awareness through fundraising events and gatherings across the country! In my last post, I wrote about how I joined the Kayaking 4 Meso event in Upstate New York. In this post, I’m going to share my experience with the Miles for Meso event halfway across the country in Illinois.

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Fall Mesothelioma Awareness: Kayaking 4 Meso

Kayaking for Meso

I love fall...especially September, but for more reasons that just the cooler weather and leaves changing color. September is a month that is full off mesothelioma awareness and fundraising events all over the country!

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How One Mesothelioma Survivor Deals With Survivor's Guilt

I learned early on in my cancer treatment what a cruel, unfair thing cancer can be. It doesn’t care who you are, how old you are, or how much money you do or don’t have. Cancer has one purpose, to destroy the host, no matter who that host is – and many times, it succeeds.

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5 Things Every Advocate Should Remember

Heather and friend Bruce

A strange thing happened to me during my cancer treatment: I had the strong desire to help people, to give back, to inspire. I wanted to be an advocate.

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The Real Costs of Mesothelioma and Asbestos Exposure

Real Cost of Cancer

When one hears the word “mesothelioma,” everyone immediately thinks of the commercials on TV: “If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, a deadly cancer caused by asbestos exposure… “ and then they think everyone who gets this cancer is automatically wealthy because of a lawsuit. Well, I’m here to set that record straight.

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Resources for Mesothelioma Patients and Their Families

The Importance of Support for Cancer Patients

When I was diagnosed with mesothelioma, I felt more isolated than I ever had in my life.. I was a mere 36 years young and told I had an incredibly rare cancer that, in most cases, was diagnosed in much older men. I felt utterly alone and defeated.

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Lily's View

Heather & Lily

My daughter Lily just celebrated her 8th birthday this month. Eight years old! At times I find it hard to believe she is already 8. Other times it seems like she should be older because she is so wise for her age. Of course we had a HUGE birthday party to celebrate, because I like to make a big deal about birthdays. I have since her first birthday, quite simply because I didn’t know if would be around to see her turn 1, let alone 8!

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Faith Through Cancer - I am a Lighthouse

I am a lighthouse “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."Jeremiah 29:11

This scripture was on a card sent to me by a friend shortly after he found out I had cancer. When I opened the card, and read those words, I sobbed. I sobbed because it was EXACTLY what I needed to read and needed to know, that I would be ok. It was those words that got me through some very scary times in these last 7 years. Those words were, and still are, my lifeline.

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Fear of a Mesothelioma Diagnosis

Heather & Cam on Lungleavin Day

“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.”-Mark Twain

I hear it often from people, how brave I am and how much courage I have. Sometimes I just have to laugh, because, going through what I’ve been through with my mesothelioma battle, I don’t feel very brave. At times, the fear was so overwhelming, all I could do was cry out to God to help me. I would love to say that through the last 7 years, I’ve learned to conquer my fears. After all, Lungleavin Day, our celebration of the anniversary of my extrapleural pneumonectomy surgery, is all about overcoming fears. But I still have my moments, more often than I would like to admit. I have the usual fears creep in, my “scanxiety” I’ve blogged about before, little pangs of fear before I fly, but the biggest fear I struggle with is the fear of something happening to my daughter. This is something that has plagued me since she was born.

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Treatments, Thanks & Traditions

Lily as an elf

I love social media! Through Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, I've been able to communicate with literally hundreds of people throughout the world. I especially love it during the holidays, because it gives me a glimpse into the traditions and lives of my new friends. Traditions are the rituals we all do year after year and carry on generation after generation without question. We just do them "because it's always been this way".

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