By Carol Tietz, lung cancer survivor, advocate and Phone Buddy
My name is Carol; I am a 5-year small cell lung cancer survivor. I’m one of the lucky few that make it this far and I am thankful to still be here.
I joined the Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA) Phone Buddy program two years ago after a Shine a Light on Lung Cancer event at Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn Illinois. Being a Phone Buddy has been a rewarding experience marked with the satisfaction of speaking with and helping other small cell survivors as well as the sadness of losing others – one buddy passed away last December.
I signed up for the Phone Buddy program to help others going through their lung cancer journey, but have come to find it has helped me just as much. The people I have met through volunteering with LCA have touched my life in so many ways. The lung cancer community gives me a strength that I never knew I had.
I am looking forward to seeing this community, including my fellow Phone Buddies, at the National Lung Cancer Summit next week! I attended last year and had an amazing, unforgettable experience where I met some incredible people all committed to fighting lung cancer and raising awareness. We went to Congress and met with our state representatives. I feel that we made a difference by giving people a personal connection to lung cancer just by sharing our stories. I can’t wait to see old friends, meet new ones and, together, give a voice to lung cancer.
Whether you share your story, attend an event or host a fundraiser, every little bit counts, not only in the lives of those you are helping, but also in your own.