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Friendship after a Brain Tumor

By Tom Ha
Tuesday, April 24, 2012


Tomorrow is our first ever chat through Friends Connection online/video chat. The topic for our first discussion will be Friendship after a Brain Tumor. In my experience of being a brain tumor survivor:

I was diagnosed at age 8 when I was only in 4th grade. When I was in elementary, middle and, high school I knew almost everyone within my grade. Sometimes I thought was it because I was the only kid who strolled through the halls in a wheel chair, walked around with a walker and, a cane? After graduation no one kept in touch with me, I tried reaching them but, no luck. Either they had changed their phone numbers or had moved without me knowing.

That was when I knew they were not REALLY my friends. I was lonely and friendless for over 20 years, and then I was lucky to be introduced to CBTF by my social worker in Memorial Sloan Kettering. I got to go to Camp Mak-A-Dream in Montana, worked with YPG (Young Professional Group) joined many events, meetings and, gatherings, now I even got to be apart of the CBTF staff! This was a place where I felt everyone actually cared about me and, did not judge me by my looks or from what I can or can not do. I just felt very comfortable and loved here; this is where my REAL friends and family is at.

For example, I use Facebook very often. Before, I knew CBTF my profile picture was always hidden because, I myself did not really like me. I always had a picture of an object or symbol. Now I always show people my actual picture. I know a lot that do not like to be tagged or show their selves online. In my point is what if they do see your picture? Are they going say your weird looking or ugly? If so you wouldn’t even want to be there friend anyways. Ever since I been with CBTF I learned no one can judge you until they actually spoke to you and see what is on the inside and not what is on the outside



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