I know I have a certain date to report back on but it hasn’t happened yet. What has arrived is October and everything pink. I will be re-blogging posts this month that I think are important to pass on. I can not stand this month with all of its cheering and celebration of pinkness. It is as though survivorship depends on a positive attitude alone and if we do not smile bright enough, we die. The pink ribbon is often used like a sage stick to wave about in the hope that it will keep breast cancer away. We need to invest in research and there are organizations that do that.
The first blog I’m highlighting is written by Carolyn Frayn over at Art Of Breast Cancer. In her most recent post she describes Fifty Shades of Pink here . She describes her piece as a rant but I think it’s more of a call to awaken to a more realistic view of Breast Cancer. Metastatic Breast Cancer is a possibility in all of our futures and it is an actuality for 30% of those newly diagnosed. Carolyn is an amazing photographer as well as writer. Visit her blog and read her story.
Carolyn references METAvivor – The METAvivor Research Program was established in 2009 with the singular goal of funding research to end death from metastatic breast cancer (MBC). Please visit metavivor.org
What a powerful post the Fifty Shades of Pink … The Rant is! I shared it on my FB page. I have grown more and more cynical / concenred about the Pinking of October … Carolyn bluntly and perfectly illustrates why
Was her post hard for you to read, Mae?
(by the way … the link didn’t work … I googled it to get to the post)
Sorry the link didn’t work and thanks for taking the extra effort to go there. I like the way Carolyn states the facts and it is important to remember these details. It is hard to read and yet important to get the information out there. I know so many women with metastatic breast cancer. I’m afraid to count them up.
Mae, your post led me to The Fifty Shades of Pink, and from there to The Accidental Amazon’s post about the same subject, and finally to a blog called Cancer in my Thirties and her post “National No Bra Day and Breast Cancer Awareness Month — OR — Please Put That Pink Can of Soup Down & Put Your Bra Back On”. I wrote a short post and included links to their blogs, and also to yours. I’m assuming you won’t mind … just let me know if so!
I don’t mind at all. Thanks!
Thank you for your very kind heart Mae… a sage stick, that’s a perfect visual! Thank you as well for including a link to METAvivor. I do wish I’d been shown some hard truths prior to my second diagnosis, that was the main reason I wanted to get out my thoughts. The truth is hard, but I think we need to face it head on. It’s been great to add my voice. Thank you for adding yours.
My pleasure Carolyn. I loved how you expressed yourself on a topic so obviously near and dear to both of us. It is time to concentrate more on research and less on the “feel good” moments that the pink ribbon offers.
I can understand where you’re coming from. Having lived through the first decade of the AIDS epidemic, when everyone was angry, and, when, finally, someone came up with the Red Ribbon as a symbol of your support for The Fight.
It was almost manic — if you were gay, and showed up somewhere with a bunch of other gays, and you didn’t have a red ribbon, you were looked upon as a Victorian matron might look at a young Victorian maiden who farted in the presence of nobility.
What I really wanted to do was scream “I’ve already got the damned virus, it’s floating around in my blood stream… I don’t need another symbol to show I support the fight!”
I still hate all the positive attitude stuff … yes, there’s something to be said for being someone who’s not a negative, whining, complainer all the time. But, sometimes the positive thinking stuff becomes just as annoying as someone who whines all the time.
I suspect the ribbons — red for me, pink for you — are more meant for those who’ve had to stand to the side and watch a friend or loved one fight the battle. You and I stand on the frontline of our respective illness, waging the war — but, those who love us are sidelined, and need to feel as if they’re doing something. Waving a ribbon around, raising awareness probably makes others feel as if they’re doing something to help, rather than stand helplessly by. I don’t think they’re aware how the images are received by us.
Here’s to a little less pink, and a bit more education and research!
Thanks John for stopping by and understanding the problem. Breast cancer needs a Larry Kramer to get it out of Awareness and into Action. It’s time for research to be the main focus. AIDS has moved along in the 32 years of public awareness far and above that of breast cancer. Breast cancer has become a money making opportunity.
Absolutely right, the fight against breast cancer has been overshadowed by marketing mania. Pink is fine on its own but as a symbol it projects delicacy. Cancer is not delicate.
Reblogged this on Johnbalaya and commented:
Some food for thought, as we enter the Pink Month, from the very wonderful Mae … make sure to click through and read the blog post she mentions. Well worth the time …..
I never had much affection for the pink ribbon; I agree that more research needs to be done. this disease has affected so many of my friends, after my own diagnosis. It’s just unbelievable when the phone rings. I would love to give money to more reasearch, but to where? T
Thanks Terry for coming by. We’re on the same page. I can get you names….
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I am a huge fan of Carolyn’s. Her writing and photography both have a haunting elegance to them.
I couldn’t agree more!
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Hi Mae, came by way of Laurie at ‘Life on a bike and other fab things’. I’ve just read Carolyn’s post as well. It was haunting. I’ve never bought into all the marketing either. I find it callus that any company would promote a product without donating 100% of the proceeds to a cause they claim to be supporting.
I’m glad you stopped by. Carolyn is an amazing woman. Laurie is one too for different reasons and one that is the same – photography! The pink ribbon problem has grown completely out of hand. Money is needed for research and people don’t realize they aren’t giving anything to that.