Message – Reynaldo O. Joson, MD – MDH Cancer Crusaders Club – December 2, 2012
Reynaldo O. Joson, MD
MDH Cancer Crusaders Club
December 2, 2012
On the occasion of the Silver Anniversary of the MDH Cancer Crusaders Club, I extend my greetings and felicitations to the organizers, led by Dr. Elsie Dancel and Ms. Lilibeth Tumambeng, and to the cancer crusaders and cancer survivors of the MDH Cancer Crusaders Club. Congratulations! MABUHAY TAYONG LAHAT!!!
Looking back, 25 years ago, in 1988, I admit I formed the Cancer Crusaders Club. Why did I form it, you ask me and I ask myself again for purpose of review.
Looking at my notes in my website, although there were several reasons, the main reason had been to use a support group, which I named Cancer Crusader Club in 1988, to help me in my comprehensive management of my cancer patients.
I needed a support group to help me in the comprehensive management of my cancer patients. As we all know, treatment of cancer consists of two inseparable parts. One part is the treatment of cancer itself and the other part, is the management of the PERSON who has been afflicted with cancer. The surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and other standard types of cancer treatment that I have been administering to my cancer patients constitute only one part of the treatment. I still need to do the other part of treatment, which is management of the PERSON, I repeat, the PERSON, yung tao mismo, with his mind-set, beliefs, fears, denials, etc. to help him cope and adjust so that he continues to live a quality life despite having a cancer. Management of the PERSON with cancer is as important and actually more challenging, as the first part of treatment. Through the Cancer Crusaders Club, I have intended to administer a group psychosocial therapy on my cancer patients.
So, those were the main reasons why I formed the Cancer Crusaders Club. Up to this day, the reasons have remained to be the same and up to this day, the objectives have always been achieved.
Let me tell you why this is so. For the veteran Cancer Crusaders, meaning those who have been attending the Annual Christmas Get-together for a long time now, you tell me whether I am correct or not.
Since 1988 up to today, 25 years after, there has always been an Annual Christmas Get-together for the Cancer Crusaders Club. The annual get-together has always been held on the first Sunday of December.
The Annual Christmas Get-Together has always been a special day for those cancer patients who attended. It is a reunion for those who were present during the previous years. It is a day of sharing experiences. It is a day of helping each other. It is a day that the cancer patients realize that they are not alone who are afflicted with cancer. The end-effect is that the Annual Christmas Get-Together is a booster of morale and hope for the cancer patients to live on. Right or wrong?
You know, I was the one who gave the name Cancer Crusaders Club. I decided to use the word “cancer” in spite of its frightening effect. I wanted the members to accept that once in their life, they had cancers. I believe this is an essential step in the psychotherapy of these patients. Right or wrong?
Are you afraid to be part of this Club because its name is fearsome or have you come to accept that once in your life, you have cancer and now you are a cancer survivor and a crusader at the same time?
Just a bit more information of the name of the club. I used the word “crusaders” not only to describe the main purpose of the club, which is, to fight against cancer, but also to include for membership purpose, persons not afflicted with cancer yet and who want to join in the fight against cancer. Thus, the club is not limited only to cancer patients.
I myself am a member of the Cancer Crusaders Club. I have no evident cancer at the moment. I am helping people fight against cancer. That makes me a Cancer Crusader.
Dr. Dancel and Ms. Tumambeng are members of the Cancer Crusaders Club. They have no evident cancers at the moment. They are helping people fight against cancer. That makes them Cancer Crusaders too.
The relatives you have with you right now are also members of the Cancer Crusaders Club. They have no evident cancers at the moment. They are helping you and other people fight against cancer. That makes them Cancer Crusaders too. So, all of us present here today are Cancer Crusaders.
Let me tell you one more reason or other reasons why I formed and why I love the Cancer Crusaders Club.
Beside the happiness and satisfaction that I am getting from helping cancer patients through the Cancer Crusaders Club, I want to confess that I have one ulterior motive, that of preparing myself in case I develop a cancer in the future. I am learning a lot from the patients who have cancers and who are cancer crusaders. I admire them. They are real cancer crusaders. Actually, with the Cancer Crusaders Club, I am also paying tribute to these extraordinary cancer patients.
Everybody, please stand up and be recognized that you are all cancer crusaders, all extraordinary cancer patients that make you cancer survivors.
Since we are on the 25th year of existence, allow me to tell you more history as a prelude to my acknowledging people whom we have to thank.
From 1988 to 2000, the Cancer Crusaders Club was a personal project or advocacy of mine with Ms. Tumambeng helping me. Starting 2001, The Cancer Crusaders Club was adopted by Manila Doctors Hospital through Dr. Elsie Dancel who was the Chairperson of the MDH Tumor Board at that time. Thus, since 2001 up to present, the official name of the Cancers Crusaders Club has been MDH Cancer Crusaders Club.
On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the MDH Cancer Crusaders Club, with all the support and benefits all of us are getting for the Club, let us thank foremost, Manila Doctors Hospital, the MDH Oncology and Tumor Committe, Dr. Elsie Dancel, and Ms. Lilibeth Tumambeng for sustaining this Club. Let’s give them a big round of applause.
Let us also thank the Secretariat and the active crusaders who year-in and year-out prepare for the annual Christmas Get-together, the quarterly meetings, and annual summer outings. Let’s give them a big round of applause too.
On this note, I thank everybody for coming and I wish everybody an enjoyable day.