In-person contact with other families and survivors affected by childhood eye cancer is life-changing. On 2-4 December, the Lone Star State shone bright as World Eye Cancer Hope USA welcomed survivors, patients and families from across the state. Marissa D. Gonzalez, bilateral Rb survivor, and President and founding board member of WE C Hope USA, shares highlights from the festive weekend.
Being in hospital during the Holidays means children and parents cannot join the usual festivities. But you can bring festive spirit and familiar traditions into your hospital space to delight and sustain you all. While cancer has no regard for Christmas, Rb Survivor, Abby White shares 10 ways to support your emotional wellbeing, and your child’s, and welcome festive cheer during a yuletide inpatient admission.
In-person contact with other families and survivors affected by childhood eye cancer is life-changing. On November 5th, World Eye Cancer Hope USA hosted 80 retinoblastoma community members for a picnic party in glorious fall sunshine. Marissa D. Gonzalez, bilateral Rb survivor, and President and founding board member of WE C Hope USA, shares highlights from the day of sunshine and smiles.
Gratitude may be one of the best ways we can support our health and wellbeing. But it’s much more than giving thanks. It isn’t easy when we’re living with cancer and its effects, and used in the wrong way, it can do much harm. In the first of two posts, Rb survivor Abby White explores what gratitude is, what it is not, the benefits, and how we can practice gratitude – even in tough times.
Gratitude is potent self-care. In part 2 of our Gratitude deep-dive, Rb survivor Abby White explores “the gratitude gap” – a big challenge that’s easy to overcome when we know about it. Plus how this knowledge can help children develop gratitude skills early. And 10 varied ways to practice and strengthen gratitude year-round, during the Holidays, and even in hard times.
For many survivors of bilateral retinoblastoma, vision changes throughout life. This may be due to treatment late effects, eye health, or other medical events. World Eye Cancer Hope USA President and founding board member, Marissa D. Gonzalez, recounts her journey with vision loss during two different seasons of life, and her difficult course with acquired blindness as an adult after decades of good sight.
Retinoblastoma care is a complex balancing act. Some children receive too little treatment, while others receive more than necessary, with potentially devastating results. Sharing two children’s stories, Rb survivor Abby White explores what under- and over-treatment are, when they may happen, their consequences, and how we can prevent them.
Medical appointments, procedures, and treatments are potentially stressful for children and their families, at all stages of their retinoblastoma experience. Child life specialist Morgan Livingstone shares 10 simple ways all medical professionals can ease stress and anxiety, support healthy coping, and help children and families thrive throughout simple interactions and complex cancer care.
This summer, patients, survivors and families gathered for the first-ever Midwest Retinoblastoma Family Weekend, just outside Chicago. WE C Hope USA President and Rb survivor, Marissa Gonzalez, reflects on the friendship, support, hope, and fun shared, and the importance of coming together in person as a community. She also gives an update on more events coming soon to other regions across the USA.
Children need a lot of support when they begin or return to school after treatment for cancer. Child Life Specialist and Elementary School Teacher, Meagan Fuller, explores how child life specialists in schools can help children with retinoblastoma adjust to school life, understand their experience, and find healthy ways to talk with peers about their cancer and visual impairment.