One of my favorite quotes from Charles Dickens. There are a plethora of essential elements to life– love, happiness, tolerance, respect, faith- the list goes on, and on. It varies from person to person, as does the degree of importance that each element holds. But hope is the cornerstone that people can rely upon when these other elements seem too far out of reach- when those cloudless blue skies seem more like a childish fairy tale than an actuality. Hope. In my opinion, the most important component in life. Let me introduce myself! My name’s Kris (or K-Dubs, as I’ve been christened here at the Know Cancer office) and I’m the new social media intern for KnowCancer.com. Basically, that means I’m Josh and Ben’s helper when it comes to Twitter, Facebook, and all the other stellar social networking sites that we utilize. I’m a self-proclaimed geek; I love writing fiction and non-fiction (although writing poetry still alludes me); I run whenever I have the chance. Someone told me that running is meditation in motion, and I completely agree- there’s nothing better than listening to music and just forgetting everything but the beat of the song and the breeze on your face. I read constantly- everything from the classics to Twilight (yes, I’m one of those vampire nerds). I also like to get down on a sketchpad when I have the chance, mostly drawing outrageous cocktail dresses that I hope to one day create.
What else? I’m a graduate student at the University of Central Florida, running around like crazy while I get my MA in Mass Communication. (Although after the experience, I may just sit around and try to invent an espresso machine that you can install in your car- caffeine is one of my best friends.) I’m a Florida girl- native, but I do have a brief stint in Boston under my belt. I have a dog (I refer to him as my Chihuahua-hyena-bat hybrid) named Dolce, who keeps me company on the rare nights I have time to relax, watch Dexter on Netflix, and snack on candy corn (my absolute favorite). I recently took up mountain biking with my boyfriend, and I’m becoming well acquainted with bumps, bruises, and blisters- but riding down a trail, watching the river sparkle next to you and hearing the trees rustle in the wind overhead is one of the most relaxing, therapeutic experiences I’ve ever had.
Cancer has had an enormous impact on my life. My father, Scott, died from leukemia when I was two year old. I don’t remember him, and my only memories come from photographs and knick-knacks that I’ve collected over the years. My dad fought long and hard, even trying new treatments at a hospital in Houston, but in the end was taken from us. If I could have one wish come true, it would be to get the chance to know him. His sister, my Aunt Carol, was also taken from our family by cancer. Luckily, I was blessed with the chance to know her and spend lots of time with her during which she kicked my butt in Scrabble. On a more positive note, both my best friend, Lauren, and her mother, Pat, fought and beat cancer and are now living happily and healthily in Boston and Tampa, respectively. Lauren has been my best friend for nearly seven years, and Pat has been a touchstone in my life, giving me advice and support and basically being my second mom. So why am I here, working for Know Cancer? Because knowledge is power. I’m a staunch believer that raising cancer awareness is crucial. More awareness means more research!
More awareness means more acceptance- let’s face it, cancer can be a scary subject, and if people aren’t aware of the facts, they form a skewed perception that can affect how they treat someone with cancer. And when a person is diagnosed with cancer, support from their friends, family, and loved ones is a key component in their fight- there’s no room for misconceptions. I’ll repeat it- knowledge is power! I’m proud to work with the Know Cancer team and promote such an important issue. In addition, it’s all about hope. Hope for a cure- hope, hope to the last! Now, go check out the website!