There is a ten minute video below that is well worth watching. I'm going to go out on a limb here and make some presumptions. If you are reading this, you may also blog which means you enjoy writing. Or, you may be a breast cancer patient or a caregiver to someone in the throes of an illness. Perhaps you know I like to rant and you want to laugh at me, laugh with me or join in my ranting. Maybe you remember I can find myself in some silly situations or envision myself in places like a hyperbaric chamber because there was some obscure (and likely ridiculous) study I stumbled upon that connected cognitive improvement with the oxygen enriched air inside one of those contraptions.
In recent weeks, I've gotten somewhat preachy and the crux of my preachiness has been all about donating directly to things that speak to your heart and soul. Cut out the middle man and put the money right into the hands of the people who are going to USE the money. This is a great example of what I mean when I say "donate directly." And this is what it looks like when volunteers are devoted and dedicated and donor dollars are used wisely.
I am a participant in the Visible Ink program at Memorial Sloan Kettering. I will let the video explain the program as it is SO MUCH more than just a writing program. Rather than waste time gushing about the program, the folks who produced the video catch every single thing about Visible Ink that makes it so incredibly special, so powerful, so healing. What I WILL gush about is the genius of the woman whose brilliant mind crafted this idea and then brought it to fruition.
Judith Kelman launched the program in 2008. I know I mentioned in a very early entry that I was poised to participate when Visible Ink was unveiled. I still have my first email correspondence with Judith in a saved box in Outlook. Then bottom fell out of my world and there was no time for me. In 2011, three years and many problems later.... I MADE the time. It truly changed my life.
Judith has turned this writing program into a work of art. Literally. You can see for yourself. And yes, this is a completely shameless plug. I have a bit part in the video. So yes, it's compulsory viewing. And yes, if you are so inclined, their are high hopes to expand this program beyond the walls of the MSK Community.........
I can't begin to express my gratitude to Judith for her vision and to Anna who continues to cheer me on and helps me cut things to size and clean up the choppies. This is a nice way to end the week.... And, as I head to Washington DC to make some noise, I am struck by this: All of my activities today began as a result of VI...... It is because of VI that I realized I had to pay it forward by getting involved.... first with the hospital and then with Army of Women and now as a member of NBCC and Breast Cancer Action. Visible Ink changed me and now it's my turn to change the world. I'm dreaming big. Join me, won't you?