CureSearch for Children's Cancer funds and supportstargeted and innovative children's cancer research with measurableresults, and is the authoritative source of information and resourcesfor all those affected by children's cancer.
“What I learned was that cancer can take away a lot of things, but that it could also help me to realize many things. Cancer gave me
focus and determination—to live what life was given to me to the fullest. It helped to make me deeper and wider and more impassioned
than those who have not had to experience the harsher sides of life. I learned that the unexpected gift of cancer is an intense
appreciation for life. I found compassion for others where there had been none before, I found strength I didn’t know I had.” – Amy,
childhood cancer survivor
No one would volunteer to have cancer. Even though it may seem impossible to imagine at the beginning, most people find the strength to
deal with cancer when they or a member of their family become ill. Most people cope with the challenges cancer brings one day at a
time and come out okay in the end. Overall, most children’s cancer survivors have a good quality of life and sense of well being .
Also, after getting through such a challenging experience, many people look back on it and feel that they underwent some positive
personal changes as a result of having cancer.
It is easy to think of the negative things that come with cancer: having to be in the hospital, missing out on school and social
activities with friends, feeling too sick or tired to enjoy life, worrying about the future. During treatment, the time is often spent
managing these negative or unpleasant things. After treatment, looking back on these experiences can challenge the way children,
teens, and their families think about themselves and their world. Many people begin to see positive changes in themselves as a result
of surviving the cancer experience. They feel stronger. Parents, brothers, sisters, grandparents, and friends may also experience
positive changes as a result of someone close to them having cancer. For example, some people say the cancer experience helped them
focus on what really matters in life. They say they appreciate life more, have deeper personal relationships with family and friends,
and find a stronger sense of spirituality. Others report increased confidence in their ability to handle difficult situations, and
more certainty about their priorities; they feel more confident and have new interests and goals. Some people experience a desire to
“give back” to others and work to help current and future cancer patients. These people might get involved in organizations like
CureSearch that provide resources to cancer patients and focus on finding a cure for all children’s cancers.
This idea of finding positives from a generally negative experience has been called “benefit-finding” or “post-traumatic growth.”
Benefit-finding means looking for the positives in the experience, and posttraumatic growth means positive changes in the way you think
and feel due to experiencing the trauma of a serious illness. People may call it different things, but basically it means you are able
to see something positive come from the often scary and negative experience of having cancer or being close with someone who has had