At Cancer Bell-Ringing Ceremonies, Some Are Angry Onlookers

In American cancer clinics, ringing a bell is now a commonplace celebration for patients who have completed chemotherapy or radiotherapy. But the cathartic ritual leaves some patients feeling very left out.
— Read on www.medscape.com/viewarticle/902132

+Being a terminal cancer person I can’t help but see this bell-ringing stuff for adults as just another advertising thing for Big Pharma/Big Cancer. Continuing with chemotherapy as part of a palliative-care regimen, as long as it works, demands, to me, some real trust between doctor and patient — some thing I do not have.

Ringing a bell after cancer treatment can mean a lot of things to different persons, family members, and friends. For a child it can represent the end of a battle and being victorious over the disease. Loved ones can bow their heads and pray that it be so. It could also be the end of a long, complex, costly, pain-filled ordeal that may better the odds of being alive five years from now. Unfortunately, for those of us consigned to an uncertain future where metastases are destroying our bodies, the ringing bell with the accompanying hype can bring on anger, sadness, and other negative emotions.

There is an ad on TV that shows an immune cell, fortified with state-of-the-art drugs, destroying a cancer cell. Immunotherapy sounds like a good idea. So why don’t I jump on this bandwagon?

My heart looks forward to my next life.

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