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Cancer Support at Gilda’s Club

Managing Diagnosis and Treatment to Come Out the Other Side

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Myriah was just 28 years old when she received her breast cancer diagnosis. When her oncologist recommended Gilda’s Club, she didn’t think she needed support. But then, as she got further into her treatment, it all started to catch up to her.

“I was leaving Costco and having a bad day…I literally drove myself past the clubhouse,” she remembers. In that moment, she decided to give Gilda’s Club a try. She walked into the clubhouse, spoke with Kirsten, Gilda’s Program Director. The Midwest Young Adult Cancer Conference (MYACC), was the very next day. Myriah attended MYACC, and she immediately became invested in the Gilda’s community. 

Myriah, along with her husband and daughter, joined Family Night at Gilda’s. Even after Myriah finished treatment, she still wasn’t healthy enough to work, so Gilda’s Club became her outlet. She took cooking classes, attended educational workshops, and learned about journaling. 

Then, as she began to move further past her treatment, she shifted her focus to survivorship. Myriah explains that a lot of the value that Gilda’s offers is in being able to have conversations about things no one else is talking about. She shares that, for five years, she didn’t do her hair. “For more people that’s not a conversation they had,” she explains. 

“The amount of things that it taught me was incredible. We changed everything about our lives. Our diet, our body products, our lifestyle,” Myriah shares. They particularly embraced lessons on how lifestyle affects post-cancer survivorship. 

Myriah also shares how much these conversations around survivorship and attending support at Gilda’s Club have impacted her daughter. “If you have children, they don’t see cancer as a boogeyman,” she explains. 

“I still don’t know what we would do without Gilda’s Club,” Myriah shares. “I feel the impact that it’s had on my family and others…it’s unbelievable. There aren’t a lot of unbelievable things left in the world, but Gilda’s is one of them.” 

“It’s the feeling that it’s more than just the building. We’ve been through the flood…we know that even without the building, the impact that Gilda’s has on families is just remarkable,” Myriah explains.

Are you or someone you know dealing with cancer?

You don’t have to face it alone. At Gilda’s Club Madison you can find emotional support, cancer education, and hope. Membership is free and open to children and adults with any cancer diagnosis, as well as their loved ones. All programs are offered at no cost to participants.

Get started today with your free membership.

Call 608-828-8880, email program@gildasclubmadison.org, or visit https://www.gildasclubmadison.org/get-support/membership/ to learn more and participate in a New Member Meeting.

Or click here to donate now to help us meet our Giving Tuesday donation match goal in support of survivorship programming.