Let’s just get that big, ugly word right out there in the open, shall we?? Because ultimately, much as we’d like to pretend otherwise sometimes, it is all around us, and killing our friends and family as we speak. Around the world, someone is being given the devastating news that they have cancer every two seconds. Most, if not all, of us will know someone who has suffered cancer and possibly even died from it. If you are one of those who has lost someone to cancer I apologise if this subject upsets you, but you more than most will know that raising awareness (and most of all raising funds for research) is something we have to keep in the public eye if we are ever to find ways of combatting this illness. In the UK alone last year, 309,189 people were diagnosed with some form of cancer. In that same year, 155,859 people in the UK died from cancer. Over a hundred and fifty-five THOUSAND people died – just stop reading for a minute, and picture that number. Every year I attend the Download Rock Festival here in the UK. Average attendance is a little over 100,000, meaning that at any time during the day there are about 70,000 people in front of main stage. Here they are.
Now double that number. And now with that image in mind, picture them all dead. Dead from a sickness we don’t fully understand, and have yet to find a way of fighting effectively. Sobering thought, isn’t it??? Then take into account the size of the UK. As countries of the world go, we’re tiny. Go ahead, take a look for comparison.
So if we lose that many people to cancer every year, what does that mean for the figures in your country?? Or worldwide?? The shocking truth is that 12.7 million people get cancer every year. Those are not some statistic we are talking about, they’re real people, with real lives, and jobs, and families, all of whom now face the horrific uncertainty of whether science can save them from death or whether the time has come to say goodbye. People who have to find the way to break the news to partners, to mothers and fathers, and worse still to children. People who even if they do recover will possibly face long, painful and debilitating treatment, job loss, financial hardship and emotional turmoil. People like my stepmother.
I’m not going to reveal personal details about my stepmother’s fight against cancer, partly out of respect for her privacy but also because I don’t want anyone to feel that her case is special or more worthy than those closer to you. But having someone so close to you affected by this is a great eye-opener to how deeply and quickly such an event can turn people’s world’s upside-down. In a short space of time, she has endured enormously difficult and painful treatment, lost her job, undergone major surgery and, ultimately, a mastectomy. For men reading this, imagine if someone cut off your bloke-bits, and then consider how you’d cope with that mentally. Alongside her personal suffering, I’ve witnessed how coping with this has affected family and friends around her, and undergone some of that anguish of uncertainty myself. Cancer is an evil, destructive force that attacks not just the sufferer, but all those around them too. You’d have to be dead inside yourself not to care about all this.
Fortunately, many of us do care. Countless organisations worldwide every year host a multitude of events that generate badly needed funding for medical research into cancer, as well as providing respite care and counselling for sufferers. Unless you’ve been living in a cave for years (like the guy down the beach from my house, but he’s a different story…) you’ll be aware of the pink ribbon representing breast cancer awareness – Breast Cancer is responsible for 25% of all cancer cases, and affects men as well as women. Which is why what started out as a fairly blue Twitter exchange one night suddenly morphed into an uprising of bloggers, determined to do something, anything that they could to raise awareness and money for the fight against cancer. And Bloggers4Boobs was born.
Spearheaded by Angie, Becca and Bill, they quickly established a series of ways that other bloggers and their readers could easily help to make a difference, and it’s to that incredibly worthwhile cause I ask you to lend your weight today. You may not be able to afford a donation. But it doesn’t mean you can’t do something to help. Amongst the multitude of good ideas they had was the Whose Boobs? concept. In short, people are submitting photographs of their breasts (in a tasteful, name and face free way!!) to their ever-growing catalogue of boobs – mine are in there somewhere, and so are my wife’s – to show readers that real people are not only sitting up and paying attention, but taking part. There is the option to make a direct donation if you so choose, there is merchandise available that generates money for the cause, and above all a loving community of people who care greatly about helping to make a difference about this issue. Please, when you leave this site today do so by THIS LINK HERE, and go over to see what they are up to, and how you can join in to make a difference, and help save lives today. We aren’t asking for much from you, but everything you do to help this effort makes a real difference in someone’s life – possibly someone close to you. Possibly even YOU.
Thanks for listening. Cancer is a sensitive issue for many and not often easy to discuss or confront, but by doing so we begin to make the stand that will eventually drive this hate-filled disease from our lives once and for all. A world without cancer is not a pipe-dream, it’s a reality waiting to happen and it’s one click away – make that click today. THANK YOU X