Save Women: What Breast Cancer Survivors Want You To Know

 

Save the Women

 

This came up yesterday. And the question was posed on the FUCK CANCER facebook page about a campaign in the UK asking women to show their bra straps to support Breast Cancer Awareness.  Women who have under gone mastectomies have started their own campaign,  #showyourscars.

Copyright 2011 © David Jay Photography

The Scar Project by David Jay

 

After some discussion with Breast Cancer Survivors I get what they are saying about “Breast Cancer Awareness” campaigns. They are tired of the cute pink ribbons and “Save the TaTa’s” cutsie themes that this disease has become associated with. They want to see the end and the sexualization of this deadly disease and for people would begin to donate to foundations that actually are looking for The Cure.

In 2012 there was this quote regarding the Susan G. Koman Fund.

“Screening is their thing,” said sociologist Gayle Sulik of the University of Albany and author of the 2011 book “Pink Ribbon Blues: How Breast Cancer Culture Undermines Women’s Health.”

“What they’re best at is awareness, which you could also call publicity,” she said. “Getting out the word that breast cancer exists is what they excel at – that and raising money. But if your mantra is ‘end breast cancer,’ screening isn’t going to do it.”

What Breast Cancer Survivors want you to see are their scars, their hearts and souls, not pink ribbons and bra straps,  They want you to say [sic] the whole woman not just her boobs.

On the Fuck Cancer FB page, Jill Parde Said it best:

“Giving to good charitable organizations that are donating money to research, like Metavivor.org. Sexualization of a disease that kills 40,000 people a year and whose treatments haven’t really changed in 30 plus year isn’t beneficial. Who hasn’t heard of breast cancer? I think we are aware. It’s time to say we want more out of charities than awareness, we want a cure. A real one. Not the one people think you receive after a person diagnosed with early stage finishes chemo. The kind that keeps cancer from reoccurring [sic] and stopping stage iv cancer before the patient dies.”

I asked Jill Traynor-Calabrese  Why can’t women who have not suffered from breast cancer show their straps in support of women who have? I thought the purpose was to raise awareness?

She replied flawlessly.

“Posting educational material on social media instead of bra straps and slogans like “save second base” is the best kind of awareness you can show on here.
That is far more effective than bra straps or “save the tatas.” Breast Cancer has been seen as a cute pink ribbon for a long time now but you know the truth that there is nothing cute about it at all.
Encourage others to do the same thing you have done. Help women by going to charities that you have done and encourage others to do the same. Sharing your story is awareness. Posting educational material on social media instead of bra straps and slogans like “save second base” is the best kind of awareness you can show on here. That is far more effective than bra straps or “save the tatas.”
Breast Cancer has been seen as a cute pink ribbon for a long time now but you know the truth that there is nothing cute about it at all.
Encourage others to do the same thing you have done. Help women by going to charities that you have done and encourage others to do the same.”

So for me,  I am not going to show my bra strap or post the pink ribbon as I usually do for the month of October. But rather I am going to share with you the faces of breast cancer daily!  If you would like me to honor you or your loved one.  Please message me here at my Facebook page. I am only one person I can only do so much.  But one thing I can do is to help educate others about the real needs of those fighting breast cancer, and where you can put your money so it will actually go to research. #pinkisnotacure.

You can see the faces of breast Cancer here at The Scar Project

Their Mission:

The SCAR Project is a series of large-scale portraits of young breast cancer survivors shot by photographer David Jay.

On the surface an awareness raising campaign for young women, The SCAR Project’s deeper message is one of humanity.

Ultimately, The SCAR Project is not about breast cancer, but the human condition itself; the images transcend the disease, illuminating the scars that unite us all.

Rethink where you give your charitable dollars. For more information on research and finding the cure, go to the research page on Metavivor.org,  And spread the hashtag #numbershavenames

Please join me and the millions of women who are fighting for a cure to End Breast Cancer. Like Jill Parde said, “Who hasn’t heard of breast cancer?”

 

 

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Barry Swanson: A Celebration of a Life Well Lived

 

When we lose people that we care about, it is always too soon.  This holds true for the life of Barry Swanson.  He left this world tragically, leaving behind children and grand children, family and friends. Even those with brief encounters, remember him with fondness. But it was how he lived his life: With great gusto, the ability to find joy in everything he did, to find something positive, even in the face of diversity.

What I have always known of Barry was his kindness, perpetual smile and good humor, (along with the ability to do more u turns in a single ride than one would think possible.)  In the seven plus years or so that I knew him, I never heard him speak ill of anyone or saw him without a smile on his face.

The first time I met Barry was for a motocross race at Anaheim Stadium.  A mutual friend connected us knowing we were just a couple of people who loved the sport and didn’t much want to go alone.  So I met him at Anaheim Stadium on a warm February evening. We had a great night cheering on our favorite racers and listening to the Braaawwwpppp Braaaawwwpppp of the bikes.

Saturday, September 12th I came into Temecula to attended a going away party at The Garden in Old Town.  Imagine my surprise when I walked over to my table to retrieve my drink to find Barry  sitting in my chair. We spent some time together and caught up on life.  He was so happy and told me he had moved in with his son to be closer to him and his grandchildren.  They all were the light of his life, his face and eyes sparkled with love when he spoke of them.

We left at the same time, and I never would have imagined as I watched him walk away it would be our final encounter.  I saw his pony tail had grown many inches since we had last saw each other.  His cologne wafting on the heavy Summer air as he walked away.

As each of his children said so eloquently.  Barry left us with a love that will burn in the hearts of all that knew him.  He left a legacy of faith in all human kind,  that there was in all, goodness…, if you took the time to look for it.  And it is true.  Barry was the kind of man who when he spoke to you,  he truly was, speaking to you.  He wanted to know how YOU were doing.  He did not forget my son’s service in the Marine Corps or forget that he was a combat Marine and ask if he was well.  He genuinely cared.  It was not ever a nicety to be forgotten by the next sentence.

I am sure I could write hundreds of words about the man who Barry Swanson was.  But I don’t think I need to.  Because he wrote his words on each of our hearts, we all know his story and I am proud that I was a page or two in his book of life. I will remember him always with a great fondness.

 

Barry Swanson March 23,1953 ~ September 17th, 2015

                      Barry Swanson March 23,1953 ~ September 17th, 2015

“Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for kindness.” -Seneca-