As we wrap up the awareness week for Adolescents and Young Adults (AYAs) with cancer, I would like to say to my AYA friends who are fighting cancer, I support you; to those who are survivors, I admire you; and to those who were taken, I honor you.
While our peers are achieving education, career, and relationship milestones, we are celebrating treatment milestones.
Hooray for a successful surgery! Hooray for finishing chemotherapy! Hooray for completing radiotherapy!
We jump over big victories. Hooray for clear scans! And we get very giddy over small victories.
Yes, I am able to walk unassisted! Yes, I am able to take a shower! Yes, I did not vomit!
I am grateful to the AYA with cancer friends I met who I am able to share not only similar hopes with but also similar fears and disappointments. It is oddly comforting to have friends who understand exactly what misery you are going through and still laugh with you.
Few days ago, I posted that although I have AYA with cancer friends, I was not able to find a local support group for AYAs with cancer. Then last night, Alexa, a lymphomie or fellow lymphoma patient, reached out and launched Kanser sa Adolescents and Young Adults (KAYA), a community for Filipino AYA cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers.
Wow, God is listening!
May this community be instrumental in helping Filipino AYAs with cancer (aged 15-39 years old) navigate diagnosis, treatment, and survivorship.
Join us at KAYA 🌹