What Awareness Means To Me, Joanna Isbill
(Written by Joanna Isbill, Editor “Life Redefined” / Thyroid Cancer in Young Adults, Dear Thyroid)
Thyroid cancer is not a good thing. But good things can come from it. Awareness is one of those things.
I have a friend who thought the thyroid was maybe located in the shoulder. Awareness is telling people it’s in the neck.
I have family members with various thyroid diseases. Awareness is sharing information with them so they can better pursue wellness.
I have friends with thyroid cancer. Awareness is sharing with each other how we cope.
I have talked with people who think thyroid cancer is the good cancer. Awareness is telling people such a thing does not exist.
I’ve had people tell me that if I had to get cancer, thyroid cancer is the one to get. Awareness is telling people that cancer is not something you choose.
I have encountered people who think I’m now as good as new because my cancerous thyroid was removed. Awareness is telling them what life is like without a thyroid.
Creating awareness means telling my story. No, I don’t chase people down telling them I have cancer and they better go to the doctor today because they might have cancer, too. But when I have the opportunity, I tell my story. I tell my story because I want people to know where their thyroid is and what it does for their body. I want people to appreciate their healthy thyroid and know the symptoms of a failing thyroid.
Awareness does not mean you should freak out over every little ache and pain. Awareness is being in tune with your own body and understanding how it works (or at least trying to understand!) so you can better know when something is wrong. Awareness is being responsible with what we’ve been given.
Tags: autoimmune disease community, autoimmune disease support, autoimmune diseases awareness month March, autoimmune literary community, awareness for autoimmune diseases, Joanna Isbill, thyroid cancer, thyroid cancer awareness, thyroid cancer patients writing about awareness