Today I was honored to be a Guest Blogger on the website for the Fight | Survive | Inspire Foundation.  My remarkable, inspirational, and down-right A.MAY.ZING. friend, Kate, is the Foundation of Fight | Survive | Inspire Foundation and a cervical cancer survivor and advocate.  In other words, she is a Fighter, a Survivor, and an Inspiration to me!  Below is my post but please visit the Fight | Survive | Inspire blog ( today!
Fight. Survive. Inspire.
These three words describe the battle that life proves to be so simply, yet perfectly.  We are fighters.  We fight for what we believe in; fight to figure out who we are; and fight to hold onto what we love.  I am a fighter and you are a fighter.  We are all fighters.
We are survivors.  We survive the obstacles that life throws at us.  We survive the words of our critics and cynics.  We survive our own doubts and fears. You are a survivor and I am a survivor.  We are all survivors.
We are inspirers.  We inspire without even knowing it.  We inspire others through our and actions every single day.  We inspire people whose names we will never know- who will never know our name- but they’ll remember us by our inspiring words and actions.  And we are inspired by others too.  We are all inspiring and inspired. 
All of us may personify these three words, but there is a group of people that define them: Cancer patients are the fighters, survivors, and inspirers of our world.  They are the ones that inspire us with their strength, courage, and will-power as they fight to survive.  I am inspired by each cancer patient I meet. I am inspired by every story I hear.  I am inspired by them, inspired to live my life more fully and completely than before. 
I, myself, have never battled cancer firsthand, but considered myself blessed to be surrounded and inspired by many fighters and survivors that have.  Like most of you, I’ve had friends, family members, former teachers, and colleagues whose live have been touched by cancer, and as a result, they have touched my life. 
Actually, stories of others’ battle with cancer began impacting me as a child when I enjoyed reading Wish Kids’ stories in Highlights Magazine.  In my younger days, I loved hearing about their Disney World trips and which celebrities they got to spend a day with; however, as I got older my interest in these little kids grew.  I’m sure I asked my mom why these kids had bald heads, which most likely caused the dreadful word to enter my vocabulary: Cancer.  These little kids had cancer. 
As I learned more about cancer over the years, my empathy for cancer patients and their loved ones only grew.  In college, when my best friend’s boyfriend was diagnosed with testicular cancer at the age of 21, I realized firsthand how heart-breaking this illness can be.  I was inspired to fight cancer; however I could.  I wanted to fight for Kyle.  I wanted to fight for my friend Sarah’s mother who had breast cancer.  I wanted to fight for all of those Wish Kids I used to read about.  I wanted to fight for all of the cancer patients.  After reading the story of a fellow Ohio University student’s battle with cancer and her wish granted by the Make-A-Wish Foundation ®, I decided to begin serving the Foundation as a volunteer.  Since then my dedication to the cause and empathy for those impacted by cancer and other illnesses has soared. 
Through my volunteer work with Make-A-Wish ® and Children’s Memorial Hospital, I am able to be surrounded by resilient little warriors (also known as kids) that fight, survive, and inspire every day.  By working with them, I am inspired to fight, survive, and inspire.  They give me strength to fight; courage to survive; and the desire to inspire others.
Fight. Survive. Inspire. As I shared, these three words certainly describe the work that I do and who I am…and so much more.  I fight, I survive, and I inspire for those that fight, survive, and inspire me. 
Cancer is something that touches us all.  Cancer is a fight that we all fight together.  When it comes to fighting cancer, there is neither prejudice nor discrimination.  There is no hate, only love.  By continuing to fight together, more will survive and the more we will inspire.  So we’ll continue to fight until the battle is won.

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