Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Mesothelioma Awareness Day is Approaching

Mesothelioma Awareness Day banner - Thoughts in Progress
I want to talk to you about a disease I know nothing about as this coming Saturday is Mesothelioma Awareness Day.

Sounds strange to say I want to talk about something I know nothing about. Well I hope by sharing the information I have and the links to learn more, we all can become better informed together. And, if you are aware of this disease, you can share your knowledge with us.

I was made aware of this upcoming celebration by blogger Heather Von St. James, a soon-to-be 10 year survivor of mesothelioma. Heather (shown in the banner above) explained that mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. Mesothelioma Awareness Day (MAD) is a day that's very near and dear to her heart because each year that she gets to celebrate is another year that she has beat the odds.:)

Heather was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a rare and aggressive form of cancer, when she was just 36 years old.  Her daughter, Lily, was born just 3 short months before but there was no time to wait.  She immediately sought the best treatments possible, which included the removal of her left lung by Dr. David Sugarbaker at the Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston.  Heather's procedure, though risky, was completed without incident and she began her slow recovery.

Heather, like so many women with this terrible disease, was exposed by second-hand exposure to asbestos.  When she was just a little girl, and her father would come home from work, Heather would put on his jacket that was covered in white dust.  Little did she know that those fibers were already beginning to change her life forever.

Mesothelioma Awareness Day Fact Sheet - Thoughts in Progress

You can read about more Heather’s journey HERE.

 Mesothelioma is a disease with a latency period up to about 50 years.  This means that those who have been diagnosed are often already in the late stages of the cancer, and have had the disease for many years.  The three types of mesothelioma are pleural mesothelioma are pleural mesothelioma (being the most common), peritoneal, and pericardial.

About 3,000 people in the United States recieve a mesotheliona diagnosis each year.  There are 60 countries around the world where the use of asbestos is banned, but the US and Canada continue to use the deadly product.  Asbestos itself, in it's standing state, is not dangerous.  However, once it becomes disturbed, or compromised, it takes on its' deadly attributes.

Please help spread the word about Mesothelioma Awareness Day!


  1. I featured Heather on my blog last year. It was particularly pertinent because my youngest brother and his wife will have to leave their home (next month yay) because of loose fill asbestos contamination.
    I hope Heather continues to not only survive but thrive. And I love that she is reaching out to others.

  2. Thanks for this important share. I had never heard of this disease. I wish Heather all the best, and it's wonderful that she continues to raise awareness and that you are doing the same.

  3. I read about Heather last year, and how she beat the odds and celebrates every year. I didn't know the details of her cancer though. Wow, is asbestos is some nasty stuff.

  4. Thanks for sharing this, Mason. Wishing Heather all the best as she moves on with her life. I hope, too, that someday, this is something that will be a distant memory.

  5. Thanks for shining a light on this. Thank goodness Heather survived and is sharing her story so others can perhaps be helped.

  6. Hi Mason - I'm joining in this year on Saturday ... but you've put in some facts I didn't know. I have to say Heather is a shining beacon for others who are ill and can be cured, or live longer ...

    It's wonderful and I'm sure this blogging fraternity will take note .. cheers Hilary

  7. Wow. This is important stuff. Second hand exposure to many things can cause us harm. We need to think about that. Prayers are lifted that Heather continues to beat this disease.

  8. What a touching story. Heather is truly an inspiration.

  9. This is an amazing story--tragic, yet uplifting in how she and her family are coping. So glad you hosted her today.


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.