Monday, January 3, 2011


PETOSKEY, MICHIGAN - Mel Majoros has her life in order. That’s how it seems to me, anyway. I was introduced to her (online) by a mutual twitter friend. We all liked hockey, so naturally I wanted to say hi! In spite of the fact that I knew she was in Michigan and was most likely a Redwings fan (please keep in mind I’m from Chicago ). So we chat. It takes about .5 seconds before I learn that she’s a survivor.

Three years ago she was on her way to the last day of Redwings training camp (her fan life is a bright, shiny world compared to the rest of us hockey fans …) when her doctor called her and asked how soon she could get in to discuss the biopsy results. You get a call like that, you already know what’s going on, without any further words being spoken. What a shock to someone who was in the ‘best shape of her life’.

She was triple positive, and in our world, it’s better than a few other diagnoses she could have received. As an adopted child, it took her some research to find out if there was a family history of the disease (there was, sadly). She had surgery, chemo – including the much despised red devil – and powered her way through all the side effects. She told me that at one point, the nurse whipped out a needle so large she felt like she was in a cartoon. “What is that thing, like 3 feet long? You have to be kidding me!” The exhaustion coupled with insomnia was a particularly challenging battle for her, one that so many of us struggle to handle.

As a radio producer, she was delighted to be offered the opportunity to host her own show; her focus is to tell people to be an EMPOWERED PATIENT. She refuses to let people embrace the idea of being referred to in the past tense once they have a diagnosis. There are so many patients who need strength and help in areas that are totally unaddressed, and she features them on her show to offer them a bigger voice. She’s interviewed singers who embrace the cause like Ryan Hamner and children like Melinda who write award winning books about cancer.

Her outreach and work is touching people, more than she can possibly understand. Thank you, Mel, for allowing me to put the spotlight on you for a change of pace. Keep fighting, cancer warrior!!!

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