Sunday, April 15, 2007

"My Cancer" with Leroy on NPR

This past week in his blog, Leroy Sievers has been mentioning that he will be on Talk of the Nation on NPR (National Public Radio) this coming Monday, April 16, from 2:00-3:00 talking about his blog "My Cancer" and asking people to tune in.

If you can listen, please do. I will be listening, and will try to call if they are taking calls from folks not in the live studio. Leroy has been an inspiration to me over these months as I've written my blog and struggled with my cancer diagnosis. If you won't be by a radio then, the show may be available for podcast, to listen to later. The Boston affiliate of NPR is WBUR, at 90.9 FM.

Leroy has managed to create a national community of those struggling with a cancer diagnosis and treatment by honest, vulnerable, challenging words that brought those affected by his words together in a virtual community of love, support, and learning. Leroy has just had some excellent news, that there is no evidence of disease, and he's trying to figure out where to go from here with his life, anticipating a future that seemed unlikely at best just months ago. He doesn't believe the cancer is gone, just lurking, but the absence of tumors means he can think about the future differently.

In anticipation of the show, this past Thursday I received a phone call from one of the NPR folks working on this show, named Ari; I was called because I've been a regular poster on his blog. He had emailed me the day before to ask if he could call. For a short while following his phone call, it looked as if I might be heading the Boston studio to be a long distance "live" contributor to the show, but they must have found other folks, as I didn't hear back from him.

I told Ari that I thought Leroy has a unique ability to speak to the universality of the cancer experience, and to broaden his experience so that it relates well, and speaks well, to others. He is astonishingly vulnerable in his posts, despite being a male journalist, and has shared the challenges of chemotherapy, the pain post-treatment, the awful waiting to hear the news from tests, and even how it feels to hear "bad" news about results, and then get a phone call the next day saying it was a mistake, and no new tumor was found. So, I said good things, will say them when I call in Monday, and think them about Leroy, but it looks like part of my "15 minutes of fame" will not participating on Leroy's ToTN show tomorrow.

Leroy also mentioned this week that the documentary about his journey with cancer will be aired on Discovery Channel on May 6. I'm going to mark my calendar, and I'm sure I'll have more to say about it as it's closer.

Yesterday was a good day of consistent energy (my body's birthday present to Patty, perhaps?) and I treasured the day. Today I'm more tired, and just finished a post-church nap. Friends at church were praising me for listening to my body this week, but I have to say that my body didn't give me a lot of choice. It told me what I could and couldn't do, and I responded dutifully. This week I'm hoping to be back in the classroom, but I've already thought of some adjustments to my teaching day to make it less taxing energetically. Thanks to all of you who encourage me to keep taking it easy, and who remind me of your love, prayers and support.


Anonymous said...

I have been thinking lately about this warm, personal community being created in your (and others') blogs. Isn't it ironic that something as dry and cold as internet technology can be a medium for growing warm friendships and spiritual healing? It turns out that the "virtual" hug is not so remote after all! :-)
Unfortunately, I will not be near a radio tomorrow, but I will surely watch for the Discovery Channel show on May 6th.
Take care of you this week!
Mary M

Anonymous said...

I will try to watch Leroy's show on May 6th....and although you won't have your "15 minutes of fame" fromt that are always a shining star in my eyes!

Rest, my friend.
I have to say...this weather sure makes me also feel like a nap ....we'd better get some sunshine soon...or Middleboro will be like a kingdom under a spell...
zzzz zzzz zzzzzzzz
The GOOD thing about this....when it is rainy ( and BOY was it rainy last night!)...we don't have to haul water buckets to the barn!!!
(said while jumping up and down and clapping my hands in glee)
I'm doing a sunshine dance, however....being a person who NEEDS that light-therapy!
Onward to Tuesday!!
ps...I agree, Mary...I also love that "virtual hug"!!