There’s A ‘Can’ In Cancer Because it CAN be Beaten.

When it comes to such a horrible disease like cancer it’s important to remember that your not alone and that you should never stop fighting because your not alone.

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Elicia Ramu

A single battle with cancer isn’t a battle that your fighting alone. Whether your communities by your side or your friends and family, you will always be fighting this battle with someone by your side because nobody would be fighting this horrible disease on their own.

Elicia Ramu, Staff Writer

Cancer. One word that can break an entire person’s world in an instant. One tiny word with a seriously big impact. There are more than one-hundred types of cancer and yet it still seems to attack some of the healthiest and most giving people within the world. It attacks people that don’t deserve it and all for what? A life. A precious life that will have been taken too soon. The worst part is that it attacks when you least expect it. At least that’s what happened within my family. My story with cancer is a complicated story. An ironic one too. I never had cancer and I pray every day that I never will but I’ve had to deal with this horrid disease multiple times throughout my life and I know how bad the disease can really get. 

Cancer is a disease that comes and goes. There are four different stages to it, over one hundred different forms of it, treatments that may or may not work, and a whole bunch of complicated sciences behind it. Some of the most common types of cancer according to the American Cancer Society consists of: 

  • Bladder Cancer 
  • Colon/Rectal Cancer 
  • Kidney Cancer 
  • Lung Cancer 
  • Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma 
  • Prostate Cancer 
  • Thyroid Cancer 
  • Breast Cancer
  • Endometrial Cancer 
  • Leukemia 
  • Liver Cancer 
  • Melanoma 
  • Pancreatic Cancer 

All of those are the most common types and that’s excluding all of the nonmelanoma skin cancers. 

Within just the amount of time that I’ve been alive I have seen people I know be diagnosed with Lung Cancer, Colon/rectal Cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, Bladder Cancer, and Squamous. On top of that, I have known of kids within my elementary school who have had cancer, I see kids all over my social media with different types of cancer (primarily leukemia) and more.  It hurts to see all this because I know that there’s not much that we as a society can do. There’s not much anybody can really do besides sit and pray that Chemotherapy and if needed radiation helps to get rid of the cancer completely. 

Cancer is a very complicated disease to talk about. It’s full of medical terms that feel like they don’t make much sense. For me when somebody I was really close to was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer I didn’t even have to know any other medical terms. All I had to know was that it was stage four and panic set in. When it comes to cancer there are four stages. 

Stage 1: Also known as “early-stage cancer” is when you have a smaller-sized tumor growing into some of the nearby tissue. The good part is that normally at this stage the cancer has not spread to any of the body’s lymph nodes or any other part of the body so it can be treated pretty easily. 

Stages 2 and 3: normally indicate larger cancers or tumors that have grown deeper into nearby tissue surrounding the cancer or tumor and they can have possibly spread to the lymph nodes but not any other parts of the body. At this stage, it is still treatable. 

Stage 4: At this stage, things get more complicated as this stage normally indicates that the cancer has spread to other parts of the body and other organs. This is a challenging stage to be at because sometimes it can be cured while other times it can’t. Most people call this stage “advanced or metastatic cancer”. 

The hardest part about cancer though is that you don’t know if the cancer or tumor will ever metastasize (spread to other parts of the body) or if it will stay contained. Most people also don’t know how quickly the cancer will spread (if it spreads). When someone I was close to was diagnosed with stage four cancer it only took about two months for the cancer to metastasize and take over their body. It was scary to see because I had them for two months and then they were just gone. However, there were other factors to it so that’s not to say that this will always be the case. Cancer is a very tricky disease that has taken years and years of research and studying that to this day continues to go on. 

My story with cancer is complicated. I have lost three family members to cancer and I have seen multiple people around me have either a family member diagnosed with cancer or go through cancer themselves. Even if I don’t know them I still see it everywhere I go and I realized that that’s because it’s everywhere. It’s in the TV shows like Grey’s Anatomy and all of those medical tv shows, it’s in our community, it’s in our lives, and most people have experienced something revolving around cancer at least once in their life. 

Every month is cancer awareness month with the most common month being in October for Breast Cancer Awareness. When looking up the different months for cancer I learned that every month there is at least one type of cancer awareness month and at least one different colored ribbon to go along with it. This is beyond cool because for anyone who has lost someone they love to cancer or experienced cancer themselves they deserve every single day to be dedicated to them. Every day deserves to be cancer awareness day because it’s a real disease that doesn’t plan on going away any time soon. 

I lost my grandfather to cancer, I have lost other family members to cancer and I know of a lot of little kids who are so bright and full of joy and positivity that are sitting and fighting cancer. Cancer is a disease that will come when we least expect it. It will attack anyone at any time no matter who they are. However, if there is anything that I have learned from my own personal experiences. It’s that nobody is in this fight alone and you will never be. Whether it’s your family, community, doctors, or nurses. You will always have someone fighting this battle alongside you even if you don’t have it yourself. Steve Maraboli once said “When life seems to beat you down, dare to fight back.” and I have never believed that to be more true when it comes to Cancer.