April 2020 | Issue 2
It is often in the darkest skies that we see the brightest stars.
Richard Evans
Kinda Nice
Caroline Rose, SACC board member and stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma survivor

I was talking to one of my closest friends on the phone recently while I went on my walk/jog around the lake. We were talking to each other as only close friends can, not really saying anything but instead asking rhetorical question after rhetorical question, trying to make sense of this new way of life. I was just getting ready to deep dive into my fearful analysis of what this could mean for all of us before she stopped my words in their tracks by remarking, “You know, this has been kinda nice.”

Kinda nice? I pulled my phone away from my ear to double-check I had the correct friend on the other end of the line. “Kinda nice? Dear friend, what about any of this has been, kinda nice?” I asked.
“Well, this past weekend, instead of running a million miles an hour, the five of us slowed down and played games and watched movies and just hung out together. And it was kinda nice.”
Hmm. Not the doomsday convo I was wanting to have. My mind was kinda blown. After we hung up, I sat down on my favorite rock by the edge of the lake. I hadn’t thought anything about this time of crisis had been nice in any way. I had been so focused on my fear that I had neglected to open my view up to anything other than the negative.
I suddenly found myself searching for my - kinda nice. The sunshine beaming down on my skin felt, kinda nice. The bluebonnets surrounding me looked, kinda nice. The puzzle I’d done yesterday with the kids had been, kinda nice. And, when I thought about it, I realized that just being alive on that day and in that moment was really kinda nice. What's your kinda nice?

For more visit:   https://dearrileyrose.com/
Patti Akkola, SACC board member

Q: What event did you help with?
A: Colon Cancer Coalition's 2020 Get Your Rear in Gear race at Morgan's Wonderland.

Q: How did you help?
A: I participated in every planning conference call for this event, so I had the chance to get acquainted with them. We made some good contacts, gave out a lot of brochures and SA Cancer Council member forms and enjoyed telling people about SACC's work.

Q: Tell us about race day.
A: Dennis and I got there early, and he quickly became Stacy's 'right-hand-guy' to help with whatever was needed. They will remember SA Cancer Council's efforts to help their organization. The blow-up colon was hilarious, but also educational. 

Q: What stood out about the day?
A: I loved some of the t-shirts that participants wore, like: 'What's up your butt," etc. My brother died from colon cancer. We heard so many heartwarming survivor stories.  
Photo Anne Foster & Patti Akkola
Research Spotlight

Feng-Chun Yang, M.D., Ph.D., professor and A.B. Alexander Distinguished Chair in Cancer Research in the Department of Cell Systems and Anatomy, has been awarded a $1 million UT System Faculty STARs award to support her epigenetic research on blood cancer.

The funding will be used to purchase equipment that will enhance collaborative research activities in her lab at UT Health San Antonio, throughout the Department of Cell Systems and Anatomy and the Mays Cancer Center. Read more

Some types of cancer, such as oral, neck or abdominal, are treated in a manner that makes eating difficult or impossible. Therefore, such patients require nutritional supplements via a feeding tube to maintain their weight to avoid additional complications and malnutrition. This type of patient averages seven cases of supplements during the course of cancer treatment.  
The mission of the Council is to support the Mays Cancer Center, home to UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson Cancer Center, in the fight against cancer by providing financial and volunteer resources for cancer research, treatment, education, community outreach and patient assistance.

Help us Change the Story!