When I told Matt that I have cancer his immediate response was super positive, “We can handle this. You’ll fight it and everything will be fine.” My first thought was, “I don’t want to fight anything. I just want to take a nap and be left alone.” As we continued to share the news with family and friends, everyone’s positive messages always included sentiments like “you’re gonna beat this”, “you’re so strong”, “you’re a fighter”, “you’re gonna kick cancer’s ass”. I was surprised at how many times the “fighter” analogy came up in our conversations.

During these conversations, our friends started using the hashtag “shaystrong” so it seemed like a good way to label this whole journey. But, over dinner with friends, we discussed this hashtag and decided that it doesn’t really fit my attitude. I’m more like a #shaysdoingjustfine, #shaysgonnabeokay or #shayjustwantstobeleftalone but those don’t really convey the positive cancer-fighting message, do they?

Of course I’m committed to beating my cancer but I am not going to change my whole persona, become a cancer-fighting superhero, and start wearing pink. Everyone knows I only wear black, white, and grey. Still just me – though #shaystrong does have a nice ring to it.

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