The Elephant in the Room is Cancer. Tea is the Relief Conversation Provides.


Aging Gracefully Out of AYA

by Dee Master April 11, 2023

At 33 I was hooked booked and totally cooked—not in a good way. I was diagnosed with bladder cancer a month before my 34th birthday. I was chasing a diagnosis for over a year and my PCP sucked. In short, I have really hateful feelings toward her. 

She told me that it’s all in my head; it’s all because I’m a woman! And it’s my uterus! it’s the fibroids! It’s probably the two C-sections you had, and last resort: “it’s your weight” that is causing all this abdominal pain. 


Life After Ringing the Bell

by Jennifer Wilson April 10, 2023

As I sit at my dining room table thinking to myself “the unseen challenges of survivorship. . .”, I am taken back to the time when I blogged about my cancer journey with a nice smelling candle lit, Dave Matthews playing in the background, and drinking hot tea. Writing my blog was my form of therapy. I was able to express myself in a manner that I had never experienced before.


A Toast to My Twenties

by Alyssa Stein April 6, 2023

a toast to my twenties

at twenty years young, my friends piled into my car until every seat and lap were occupied and we drove until the odometer hit 100,000 miles in virginville, pennsylvania.

twenty-one was spent bar hoping with my uncle until the night ended with my head in my grandparent’s kitchen sink.

twenty-two was the year i graduated, moved, started over, and fell in love.


The AYA of it All

by Lauren Tarpley April 5, 2023

For some reason, possibly media desensitization, I always thought I would get cancer, I just always thought I would be old. I envisioned being in my late sixties or seventies and we would be so technologically evolved as a society that it would be a single doctor appointment or single surgery that would take care of it.


The First ‘A’: On Loneliness as a 16-Year-Old Survivor

by Alexander LaMonica

It was 7:31 PM on a Wednesday and as I stared into the wall that night, the last thing I wanted to feel was sorry for myself. Against every word the doctor spoke to me that dripped with his implicit condolences, my mom crying on the window sill beside my bed. With a quick post to Instagram I was showered with attention, likes, and words of encouragement—everything I needed to get me through… or so I thought.


The “Too Young’’ Club

by Samantha Rodriguez April 4, 2023

The adolescent and young adult cancer community is one I never dreamed of being a part of. We see it in the movies, on television, or on social media, always depicted as young children or individuals ages 50+. We are told constantly that we are “too young” to have cancer. Here’s the thing, cancer does not discriminate between too young or too old, too male or too female, or too rich or too poor.


To Past Me

by Brooke Barnes March 31, 2023

To Past Me:

On May 5th, 2016 your entire life is going to change. You’re going to get the news that you have cancer, go directly to the hospital, and two weeks later you’ll get released with some daily medication that will save your life. When you’re discharged, you’re going to want things to go back to normal but you will never be the person you were before.


Rose Colored Disco Ball

by Camille Ferruzzi

The question, “Will I ever be able to have kids?” fell out of my mouth without recognizing the weight of it. It was another conversation, with another doctor, about another instance of how cancer would impact my life long-term. What would be deemed an intense and difficult conversation in the real world, I ate for breakfast without batting one of my eyelash-less eyes.


Aging Out but Always Welcome

by Paola Palmieri March 29, 2023

I recently celebrated my 43rd birthday. Something about birthdays just hits differently for a cancer patient or survivor. They are not just special days when you blow out your candles and eat cake. After a cancer diagnosis, birthdays are a lot more meaningful. They are a celebration of life, accomplishments, challenges, obstacles, and fears we face daily.


I’m Still an AYA

by Liz Hiles March 28, 2023

I aged out of AYA before I was even diagnosed, but I’m still an AYA.

My bladder cancer diagnosis was handed to me on August 12, 2016. I was 40 and only 100 days from turning 41. 

I was floored. Utterly and completely shocked. I was blindsided and thoroughly pissed off.