Oh my goodness!!! What an amazing conference! I was so in awe of all the brilliant minds in one room, I felt smarter for just being near them!! What HOPE!! It gave me so much hope for the future to see the enthusiasm and momentum created at this conference....to know that these brilliant minds are willing to put forth the effort to make a difference in research and treatment for all Cholangiocarcinoma patients!!
I was so happy to finally get to meet in person Marion, Stacie, Rick, and Donna. Thank you guys for all you do for all of us!! .....and of course all the volunteers that I didn't even know were behind the scenes of this group.....Rob, Laurie, Meg, Marie, Karen, Heidi, Barbara, Linda, Lauren....I know there are so many more I am forgetting to name.....you are all so awesome!
The part that was very special to me was getting to know three people who were there searching for answers for someone they love.....a husband for his wife, a mother for her son, and a wife for her husband. Their stories, like all of ours, are so full of love, emotion and fight. I also was so humbled of the stories of the family members who have lost a loved one. Pretty much every volunteer there had lost someone they love to this disease. They are now wanting to carry on the memory, legacy and love for their lost loved one, by helping others. So selfless, caring and kind!! I was so honored to be able to hear their stories and get to know each of them.
It was a blessing to be able to tell my personal cc story at the conference. As scared as I was, and as much as I dislike public speaking, I would do it again in a heartbeat in order to bring hope to others and awareness to the public. It was extremely important to me to put a face and a family to the statistics and numbers. It is my hope that I represented all of the patients of Cholangiocarcinoma....I did my best to lay it all out there, the good, the bad and the ugly!!
I was also able to meet Helen from AMMF, wonderful lady!
Love and prayers to all,