Today, on Friday 13th of October, we celebrate the day of Roosa nauha in Finland. Roosa nauha, the Pink Ribbon in Finnish, is an awareness campaign of breast cancer, hosted by Syöpäsäätiö (the Finnish Cancer Foundation). The foundation is fund-raising money for supporting cancer research, the cancer patients and their loved ones.
This year’s theme is rohkeus, courage. We at Kaiku Health asked four women, who have their own experience of breast cancer, what courage means for them.
”It takes courage to be your bare self in relation to others. To get up in the morning and encounter people, even if it feels difficult. To share own feelings and emotions. To expose oneself for others in the sauna.”
Marja had grade 3 breast cancer at the age of 48.
”It doesn’t really matter if you are brave or not. It’s enough courage to bear with treatments, symptoms and uncertainty.”
Eevi was diagnosed earlier this year, and she’s going through the treatments.
”Courage is being able to admit that you need help, even though you’re usually standing on your own two feet. Saying aloud that you are scared – scared of death, scared of falling ill again, scared of pain. Courage is to be bare in front of people, with your scars and traumas. And it is courage to move forward, and to be thankful of life, despite of cancer.”
Mari had aggressive, triple negative breast cancer at the age of 35.
”Courage is to be you in all the built-in colors. Everyone is brave in their own way, but we all need those people, too, that we can be weak with. Courage is to admit you don’t always have the strength. To wake up in the morning, knowing, that we all are mortal and still keep on living. To be present. Courage is to give space for your feelings and listen for them. And to listen to other’s greatest fears and to be silent, but beside. The greatest courage is to love: love yourself, your familiars, and your life. Every moment when you feel the wind on your face.”
Krista had Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at the age of 24, then breast cancer at the ages of 30 and 34.
Read more about Roosa nauha on their website (in Finnish & Swedish): roosanauha.syopasaatio.fi/.
Read more about Pink Ribbon International here.