Talking About A Generation

Michele has spent last week in DC at the International AIDS Conference and I watched some speakers online. Many of the thought leaders are talking about “an AIDS-free generation” being just around the corner. Who would have thought that was possible 20 years ago, when the epidemic of AIDS/HIV became evident? It has not come without a tremendous effort, a lot of money, and some serious brain power. And it seems that the final miles of this marathon will be difficult, but they are in site. It is quite remarkable.

And thought provoking. As I have been prepping for the Pan Mass Challenge, less than 1 year after finishing chemo, obviously, I have thought a lot about the cause that this ride supports and what it means to me. I have had this phrase “cancer-free generation” floating around in my head. Trying to rationalize the possibility of this, trying to understand the potential of it, trying to imagine a world without cancer.

My guess, for what it is worth, is that we will always have to deal with cancer. But to me, a cancer-free generation could be one that doesn’t have cancer looming over it as its largest cause of death. Rather, cancer for that generation would be a curable disease, with limited or minimal treatment side effects, and an expectation that your life would be the same after treatment as it was before.

So here is the question: when do you want to have a cancer-free generation? It is too late for my generation… and we have kids now, so it might be too early for them. But what about the grandkids, if you are around my age that means our lifetime? Would you make some small sacrifice to make this happen?  I believe this is possible.

A Cancer-Free Generation in our lifetime. 

And I would ask you to make that small sacrifice in the form of a donation to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. You say what is small – $1, $10, $100, $1000. You’re choice. But make it with the knowledge that life with cancer is possible, and you never know who this small donation might be help. Make your donation as part of  my PMC ride, this coming weekend! Help us make cancer history!


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