AugSept 2023: Courage is showing up

I usually write the welcome on a Friday afternoon after all the hard work of editing and layout the team does. Thank goodness I’m doing it on a Saturday after an inspiring conversation about children’s books with one of my brave patients. So, with that in mind and the theme of Courage is showing up, let’s start with the The Little Engine that Could and like our Super Survivor, “She tugged and pulled and pulled and tugged and slowly, slowly, slowly, she started off…I thought I could. I thought I could. I thought I could…Then all of a sudden, she stopped with a jerk. She simply could not go another inch. She tried and she tried, but her wheels would not turn…I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.”

And with the support of the excellent dietetics advice in Why consult with a dietitian?, the 3D mammography versus 2D article, and What is psycho-oncology?, she “built a small house, called a cocoon, around herself. She stayed inside for more than two weeks. Then nibbled a hole in the cocoon, pushed her way out and…was a beautiful butterfly!” (The Very Hungry Caterpillar). 

Be courageous. Read The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson; it’s about a mouse and bravery in the deep dark woods; understand the changes in cancer management with gene assays and finish with Zog, my all-time best about the princess that saves the prince and becomes a flying doctor. Read Buddies For Life, read a children’s book and be inspired to be courageous.

Your Buddie For Life
Prof Carol-Ann Benn


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Our theme is Courage is showing up. Courage comes in all different sizes; we see this in our cover story Thriving Toddler where Karabo Nstiane showed courage when she was a mere four-months-old when she was diagnosed with hepatoblastoma.

Word For Word Media are pleased to present The 2023 Big C Survivor’s Guide, with the focus being the top five cancers
in South African women and men
. We have also included the top five cancers affecting children. To all the survivors, our hope is that this booklet will assist in your journey, no matter how big or small, as long as you know you are not alone; we are here for you, we are oncology buddies.