When does cancer survivorship start?

Depending on perspective, you may be considered a survivor the day of surgery, or after the last dose of radiation. In fact, how a doctor, patient or family members determines survivorship may all be different landmarks.

I’m not a cancer survivor myself, but my dad is. I’m not sure what day he decided he was a survivor, or if that feeling ever settles in permanently.

In my mind, our family’s survivorship started in February 2012 when we skied together for the first time since Dad’s surgery. It wasn’t something any of us were guaranteed would happen again. I’m looking forward to many, many more turns down the hill to come.

I hope today, National Cancer Survivors Day marks a milestone and is a cause for happiness and celebration for many. I’m also aware it may be a painful day for many others.