Breast Cancer Awareness

Showing Up: Project Pink 5K

Registration Link to be a Virtual or Actual Runner/Walker

ProjectPink5K2014

Posted October 2nd, 2014

Classic Ann’s Diary: Pink Ribbon Awareness Month

(Editor’s note: Ann Murray Paige used to joke that breast cancer deserved more than one month, that after all, women get breast cancer 12 months of the year. She also said many times that “the irony is not lost on me that I found out my cancer had come back during October–Breast Cancer Awareness Month.” She wrote many times about this month of pink, and here is one of my favorites. This is the start of a new series of classics–the best of Ann–that will run from time to time on Project Pink Diary. It reminds us of the faces behind the sea of pink. And speaking of October–please visit our Project Pink Facebook page for more information and links to sign up as a “virtual runner” for the big Project Pink 5K fundraiser on October 25th.–LP)

So here we are, another Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  I was hoping we’d be over this by now, that we’d have beaten the beast.  But we haven’t.  We still have a long way to go.  And thank goodness we are lucky enough to have a month to remind the world that breast cancer is an evil still yet to be destroyed.


And this is the month that you’ll see pink ribbons donning soup cans from Sacramento to New York City, from Tuscon to Salt Lake City.  And you may wonder, why do they matter.  They’re everywhere , and  you may get tired of seeing them.  I mean, they’re on soup cans for heaven’s sake. What do they really  mean?  

I’m here to put a face to those pink ribbons: they mean me. And they mean my friend Carolyn and my friend Christopher’s grandmother and my young friend Mel and all the people who email me at Project Pink who’ve seen my film–I’m talking every 1 in 8 women who are diagnosed with breast cancer each year in the United States.

I know “the Pink” is everywhere this October, but so are we. And we need you to stand by us as we fight to get through another day without caving.  We are as ubiquitous as that pink ribbon you see. We’re your mother or your sister or your daughter–we are 1 in every single 8 women in this country who get hit with a disease that threatens our health and our hope and our lives. We are standing next to you at the grocery store as you pick up that pink ribboned soup can. 

And we, all of us, thank you from the bottom of our breast cancer hearts–because those hearts are still beating thanks to the help you give us.  Thanks to the donations you make and the walks you take and the ribbons you buy that have that rose hue and that meaning behind it.

Each one of us thanks you for tying that ribbon on any way you can;  so that some day–in part because of your simple effort this month, that pink ribbon may once and for all become obsolete, never to be tied around a soup can again. (October 1, 2010 by Ann Murray Paige)

Posted October 1st, 2014

Ann’s Diary: The Global Health Question

I started the day here, in infusion:

2012Infusion

and continued it here, at The Global Leaders Healthcare Conference, where I was a table leader on “Patient Advocacy.”

2012TGLHC

It was so very interesting to be in a room with people who, as far as I could tell, weren’t sick. At least not terminally ill like (ugh) I am. I really liked it–not being the sick one, but the fact that any group is trying to get CEOs of pharmaceutical companies, medical professionals, health care advocates and a host of other interested parties together to talk health care SOLUTIONS.

I told the organizer that I’m in, that I’m happy to be involved in the next event–and the next, and the next–as long as the key element is dialogue, discussion and with any luck, dynamic ideas that lead to answers to some of the biggest questions out there in the health world–

like how to insure the uninsured?

how to get people the help they need without financially squeezing the system?

how do people find out about the best care they need when they need it?

and so on…and so on….and so on.

One of the biggest questions, though, the baseline question, the Q that’s heard around the medical world–had everything to do with almost nobody else in that room but me.  What do you do when someone is told there is a treatment that will elongate their life by say, 4 months–at the cost of, say, 90-thousand dollars?

I can do that Math and answer, “that’s not cost effective.” But I’m not a commodity, I’m a woman. I’m a daughter, a wife, an author, a mother, a writer, a breast cancer advocate.  I want to make my own decisions.

Yet someone has to pay for all this–I know, I know.  So what happens if in the interest of financial solutions, someone else gets to make the choice about who gets what treatments?

Sure 90K’s a lot of dough–but what if it gets me to see my daughter’s wedding? My first grandchild?  My son’s first heartbreak?  Braid my daughter’s hair? How can some one else tell me I’m not worth my life any more?

I know it’s easy for you–the healthy–to say, “but Ann.  You’d never pay 10-thousand dollars for a car that would–pardon the expression–die in 2 months, would you?”  And you’re right, I’d probably never allow so much money to be spent on me for that short a time–I’m too frugal for that.

BUT what if I don’t get to make that call any more?  What if the day comes–and for some it may already be here–when someone else decides whether or not they can get that treatment, and live to see another day?

If you ask me, that’s the biggest issue: that’s what worries me most in this world.  For me, that’s the biggest elephant question in the global health care waiting room.

Posted January 10th, 2012

News: Breast Cancer Activist Evelyn Lauder Dies of Ovarian Cancer

We are sorry to say good-bye to another breast cancer activist, Evelyn Lauder.

Whether or not you worry about all the preservatives in cosmetics and how they may or may not affect a woman’s chemistry toward cancer–as I do– saying good-bye to such a leader in the fight to bring awareness and an eventual end to breast cancer is a tragedy.

Thank you so much for your tireless effort and work, Evelyn Lauder. May you rest in peace.

Posted November 14th, 2011 by
News: Breast Cancer Activist Evelyn Lauder Dies of Ovarian Cancer