Monthly Archives: June 2012
I recently had the uncomfortable experience of going to the movie, Pink Ribbons, Inc. with a friend who has been through two bouts of breast cancer in less than six years. The movie looks at "pink washing" and how the phenomenon has effectively glossed over questions such as why breast cancer continues to flourish despite all the walks and fundraisers.
When National Breast Cancer Awareness Month rolls around in October with its ocean of Pink, I put up my mental barriers and try to enjoy a fuchsia-free fall. It was when I got blindsided by a Girl Scout wearing a Pink-beribboned bucket hat talking about the importance of a mammogram that I lost it.
Less than two years after Anne got married, her husband’s parents called with the news that his sister had a rare brain disorder and he might too. At first, the news changed everything. And then, in a lot of ways, it changed very little. Pete’s sister, Bonnie (not her real name) had been diagnosed with Cadasil, an inherited condition in which blood vessels to the brain become thick and congested. Usually migraines are the first sign that the brain is trying to make due with a reduced blood supply, typically around the age of 30 or 40. Anne’s sister-in-law was 48. Her diagnosis came after a period of train-stopping migraines and an MRI that revealed early brain damage.