May 2013 A Thought on Fundraisers
The other day I was riding on the train and had a thought about the fundraiser we were doing. Since the train is an amazing good place for writing, I jammed it down on paper and then put it up as a comment on the fundraiser Facebook page. At the event a number of people came up to me and commented on it, so I thought I’d repost it here so that when Facebook goes out of business and is turned into a music discovery service by a next-generation Justin Timberlake, I’ll still have the thought.
If you already read it, thank you. And if you attended the event or have given at the site, thank you again.
It is amazing that despite all of the technology we have today, we basically don’t have a clue how to treat cancer.
In this case alone we’ve tried 3 treatments and researched a hundred others. Whether we are talking to leading oncologists at Memorial Sloan Kettering, board members of St. Jude’s or doctors with huge pedigrees that have gone independent, there is no right answer. Unlike a crushed leg, the doctors really don’t know what works and how to fix it. And that is massively scary.
This sense of not being in control and not knowing, whether for good or bad, is probably the most difficult part of the disease. It puts so much pressure on everyone that we act strange and take the frustration out on the people around us. And while everyone shows the stress differently, everyone shows the stress.
I think this is why this fundraiser is so important.
It gives the everyone something to focus on that we CAN affect. Instead of digging in on what someone said or how they said it, we can think about tents, websites and balloons. We can talk about this nightmare with a way to help instead of feeling completely powerless.
The Buddists say that when you put bread in a monk’s bowl you also say “thank you” for being given the opportunity to give.
The amount of people — whether close friends or people we don’t even know — that have shown their support demonstrates this. None of us are alone in this and everyone wants to help in any way they can. It restores your faith in humanity.