Inspiring event held at Holy Cross Cancer Center in Santa Clarita.
Under a tent outside the Providence Holy Cross Cancer Center on McBean Parkway, about forty people gathered together to hear words of inspiration.
Scanning the crowd, it was easy to notice one hat or bandana every three or four seats, and therefore it was immediately clear that many were in the middle of what may be the most terrifying challenge of their lives; cancer.
After a blessing from Sister Lorraine, cancer center representative Lateia Taylor outlined how Holy Cross will be approaching the future of their treatment, which includes expanding programs like “Tea for the Soul” and “Art of Healing.”
Next, Dr. Shamel Sanani spoke of the statistics, taken from Providence Holy Cross and compared them to national averages. When it comes to survivor rates, Holy Cross treatment centers either meet the national average or exceed them.
Dr. Nancy Ellerbroek took the time to touch upon an often understated area of care:
“The hardest job, but also the most important, is to help when things don’t go perfectly, even in a minor way.” She said. “Our newest endeavor will be for survivorship.”
While cancer disrupts lives for treatment, it also can leave lasting marks on an individual long after they are in remission. Energy levels, bone density and blood pressure issues can stem from cancer treatment, and so Holy Cross plans on pursuing survivorship programs to help patients live well after they have beaten cancer.
To close out the program, a cancer patient named Marlene Andreoni gave a rousing speech about her journey, currently undergoing treatment at Holy Cross for stage 2 breast cancer.
“Cancer is the great equalizer,” she said, noting that it doesn’t have any concern for race, social status or gender. However, when a patient is first diagnosed with cancer, their instincts may ask “why me?” Andreoni spoke of how she grew to say “Why not me?” In that, she said the takes control of her fight.
This was the third Celebration of Life held by the Providence Holy Cross Cancer Center in Santa Clarita, and the events are geared towards bringing cancer patients, survivors and family members together to hear from doctors and patients just like them. In this particular setting, the encouragement and inspiration goes a long way for someone locked in the battle of a lifetime.