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Dee Bertozzi

I have been living with Stage 4 breast cancer. Even with the love, support and care of an incredible group of family and friends, I often felt lost and in some measure alone. Facing Cancer Together has provided me with a sense of belonging and understanding. I attend a weekly support group. I am a member of the writing group. I have taken classes on mindfulness, mediation, nutrition, and art collage. I have attended full day retreats, lectures on specific aspects of my disease, have learned how to write a legacy for my children and had the privilege of teaching medical school students to be more compassionate.

At Facing Cancer Together I have met some of the bravest and strongest women and men that I have ever known. The knowledge, talent and insight of our very amazing facilitators has always been a gift. And, I am continually in awe and motivated by my fellow participants. We have learned from each other, we have laughed, cried, seen each other through funerals, hospitals stays, the wonderful times someone is ready to “graduate” his or her group and the times we just need to be hugged.

For me, cancer is a disease, not an enemy and I try not to let it define me. Without Facing Cancer Together I would not have asked myself so many critical questions or fully thought through the issues important to me at this time. I would have missed an important opportunity to learn, grow and live my life, in what I believe, is how I should have always lived—with grace, dignity, and calmness. Most importantly, without Facing Cancer Together I would be dying from cancer, not living with cancer. And for that—I am eternally grateful.