Who among us is not familiar with the pink ribbon? We see it everywhere. . . on hats, shirts, posters, yogurt containers, pens, paper, race forms, commercials, shoes and, well, everywhere. We see that tiny little ribbon and immediately our brain registers–breast cancer. It seems that the campaign for Breast Cancer awareness has been going on for so long that I don’t remember a time when it wasn’t. Those little pink ribbons have been remarkable in casting information into the world about the terrible disease that impacts far too many women and families.
You want to know something? There’s another ribbon, much like the pink one, except this one is blue. I wear it on a bracelet.
This ribbon is not quite as well-known as the pink one, but it will be. . . I know it. Just like the pink ribbon, the blue one also seeks to spread awareness. To spread the word. To inform.
This ribbon represents another terrible cancer. . . Prostate Cancer.
September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month and while I try to keep this blog more personal and don’t often use it for Public Service Announcement’s . . . this is personal.
You see, my FIL continues to fight the battle against this cancer. It’s a fight that is difficult and grueling, but he is winning. Since his diagnosis we have learned more about this cancer. We have learned important information not only for my FIL, but for my husband, my son, my Dad, and for all the men we love. Information that every man needs to know. And while I know that there are not swarms of men reading my blog, I know that there are wives, moms, sisters, and daughter’s who need to know.
Did you know that Prostate Cancer is the #1 male cancer? Annually, it is estimated that 240,890 dads, husbands, sons, and brothers are afflicted and more than 33,000 will lose their battle. Many people think that this is a cancer that effects only older men. However, this is not true. When one 35-year old man was diagnosed he created the Blue Cure Foundation to raise awareness.
It is important to be aware of the risk factors and to get early screening when and if possible. Often, the cancer goes undetected.
As with anything, one can be inundated with a barrage of information when learning about this cancer. Too much information can be overwhelming so I will not say too much. There is one thing, however, that we have really paid attention to since my FIL’s diagnosis: red meat. Studies show that the more red meat a man consumes the higher the risk that he will develop this cancer. Also, fried foods, processed foods, and saturated animal fats are something that we pay a bit more attention to. No, Chad hasn’t given these things up, but he pays attention and practices increased moderation.
On this September day I am doing what I can to spread awareness of this cancer that is both preventable and treatable. . . but we can’t do that if we aren’t aware. I hope that this makes you a little more aware.
We are proud of my FIL and continue to cheer him along as he continues his journey with Prostate Cancer. . .
. . . because we kind of love him. A lot.