I just found out that one of my favorite musicians, Andrew McMahon of Something Corporate and Jack's Mannequin, was diagnosed with ALL when he was 22. He has been cancer free for 8 years -- yay! I'm not usually one to follow celebrities' personal lives but the fact that he had a bone marrow transplant and is now doing well is definitely one of those pieces of information that I need to store up and pull out for some of my teenage patients.
I've been really stressed the last few days as it hits me that not only will I be stressed in rearranging how I manage my own life as I adjust to being a working mom, I will also be emotionally stressed by these kids I'm about to work with. When I was a student it was easy to not be fully invested, but I think it's going to be different now that I'm really working and am going to be so immersed in this life. Not to mention the fact that now I'm a mother and can fully comprehend the agony of seeing your child suffer. So positive stories like this can, I think, help both me and my patients. Hopefully I find a few teenagers who are interested in some retro pop punk and the inspiring story of a survivor.
This interview with McMahon was great and discusses briefly some of the aftermath of dealing with a disease like cancer. He also has a foundation, the Dear Jack Foundation, for young adults who want to go to college but whose parents funds are depleted from paying for cancer treatments. It's really nice to know that despite the presence in the world of a sucky thing like cancer, there are also oases of awesome.
Also, go listen to Andrew McMahon's solo EP, Jack's Mannequin and Something Corporate because they rock. Seriously, SoCo was my favorite band in high school. Go.