Common Bond

Ironically, the introvert in our family had the biggest party thus far in our new home.

Last night, we had 18 people over who have become the unofficial core of our bladder cancer support group.  Two of these folks I have known prior to our support group launch of 8 months ago as they were new friends I got to know through my peer-to-peer mentoring activities.  The other 16 are all new friends, from all over the Twin Cities area, with ages ranging from 30 to (I’m not allowed to say), and in professions of attorney, software developer, printing press operator, aerospace engineer, retired military, and just plain retired.  Our common bond is that we have all been touched in some way by bladder cancer.  Some like me are survivors, and others are still going through active treatment.

The cool thing about a support group like this is that this common bond brings out a degree of transparency that is almost immediate and unlike most other groups I have been involved in.  For example, I just had my cancer checkup two days ago and I can share with this group that I am only retaining 12 cc’s of urine in my neobladder and they get what a big deal that is.  We can also make fun of the fact that we need two or three bathrooms available because all of us have “bladder issues.”

I am also grateful that Tammie and Erin helped out with the food and logistics and were able to experience what has become an important part of my life.  Still amazing to me that none of this was on my radar screen three plus years ago . . .

Dean

A Boomer In Transition (and adaptable introvert)

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