I was born with Freeman-Sheldon Syndrome, a genetic bone and muscular disorder. I had 26 surgeries by my 16th birthday, so hospital rooms and intimidating doctors’ offices quickly became the backdrop of my childhood, filling up metaphorical pages that other kids had reserved for dirt hill races and princess tea parties with their stuffed animals. Growing up, I was always a little different than my peers. This wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. It just boiled down to different life experiences that I was having. I spent a lot of time reading, but it was tough to relate to the characters’ adventures when my world often seemed confined to a small, square hospital room.
Then a little book called The Fault In Our Stars came along. Keep reading »
Us ladies can always use another reminder to touch ourselves … while checking for lumps on our breasts, obviously. Olivia Newton-John and other Australian celebs teamed up for a cover of the Divinyls’ classic “I Touch Myself” — written by the late Chrissy Amphlett, who died from breast cancer — for this touching reminder. [I Touch Myself]
A breast cancer survivor in Australia posted powerful, naked photos on Facebook to show the hidden effects of breast cancer on a woman’s body, which is something that goes largely unmentioned when we think about breast cancer. Her goal is to raise awareness about cancer prevention, and expose the reality of the disease, as opposed to the pink ribbons we normally associate with breast cancer. See Beth Whaanga’s photos on The Gloss…
Garth Callaghan has been leaving sweet notes in his daughter Emma’s lunchbox ever since she was a little girl. Written on napkins, Callaghan draws his wisdom from his own life and sources as varied as the bible and “Star Wars.” The notes began as a way to give Emma a few words of inspiration and advice alongside her PB&J, but two years ago they took on a much more poignant meaning when Garth was diagnosed with cancer. Doctors gave him an 8% chance of surviving the next 5 years. Despite the grim prognosis, Garth wanted to ensure that Emma would have one new napkin note in her lunchbox every day until her high school graduation, so he set out to write them — 826 of them, to be exact. He also started a Facebook page, Napkin Notes, to share his messages and encourage other parents to write their own lunchbox notes and “create a daily connection with your child,” one that’s much sweeter — and infinitely more meaningful — than a Hostess cupcake. Keep reading »
25-year-old Elly Mayday had a thriving career in Canada as a plus-size model, and it seemed like nothing could slow her down until last summer, when she started feeling ill. “I was told it was a cyst so many times,” she says, “and I just knew deep down in my heart that there was something else wrong.” Turns out Mayday had a rare, aggressive form of ovarian cancer. Treatment required a grueling chemotherapy regimen, surgery to remove the tumors, and a full hysterectomy. In the process, Mayday lost her hair and 40 pounds, but she didn’t lose her lust for life or her desire to model. She’s already back in front of the camera, looking strong and beautiful, despite her uncertain prognosis. She even insisted on fulfilling her modeling commitment with a lingerie company after her surgery, shooting an ad that proudly shows off her surgery scars. Check out the inspiring image after the jump. And Elly? We’re all pulling for you. Keep reading »