A History of the Québec Support Group By Danielle Gagnon, Montreal Support Group co-leader and caregiver We first heard of Waldenstrom’s when my husband, Robert Perrault, was diagnosed in August 2019. It is always a shock when you hear the word cancer. We started looking on the web for information about the disease and found that WMFC had support groups in every province, except in Québec. We did not waste any time and in September 2019, went to the closest support group meeting in Ottawa. We were a bit nervous about what we would find out, but it was [...]
As we know, every WMer is unique. Equally unique is the impact the disease has on their family and loved ones. In September, 2022, Maclean's published this look at two WM diagnoses, and the impact on their families. See https://www.macleans.ca/longforms/finding-courage-and-calm/.
Our group started over fifty years ago! Well, not really, but... In 1966 I met Betty McPhee in Vancouver. Three years later she was married and living in Philadelphia. I was working on a medical team in West Africa. It was over forty years later when we met by accident over coffee in a church in Toronto, where Betty and her husband now live. But we had no time to visit -- I was flying back to Vancouver later that day. We agreed to connect on Facebook. And that’s where Betty learned later that my husband had been diagnosed with a (non-WM) [...]
Betty McPhee (1945-2023) The WMFC is sad to note the passing of Betty McPhee, the vice-Chair of the Board of the WMFC. Betty McPhee has played many roles in making the WMFC what it is today. She has served as a Vice Chair of the Board and as Chair of Membership Services. She not only was co-leader of the Toronto Support Group but had a major role in starting Support Groups across Canada. She was a very welcoming person and always ready to help others navigate their WM journey by providing insightful suggestions. She was an amazing and dedicated individual [...]
An update from Michael Knowlton. He has recently (Dec., 2021) published two new videos: You Can't Have the Highs Without the Lows, and Navigating The Journey Of Illness. Check out his entire series, documenting his journey with WM, his sources of inspiration, and the truths he lives with: "We CAN cer-vive". He also added the following message to his fellow WMers: Happy anniversary to me lol. 15 years today since my cancer diagnosis in 2006. As many of you know, I started a video series titled We CANcer Vive based on my experiences of living with an incurable cancer. It’s [...]
Raffela urges us to Choose Hope, and reminds us that we can each make a difference.
After her difficult journey through and beyond a stem cell transplant, Lucie writes "one must sustain belief in oneself ... the body and the mind make up a wonderful machine ... listening to them can be most instructive".
Learning from a life "punctuated by a cascade of medical events", Carol advises that it is important to be a partner with your doctor. "It's not just about finding the right medicine; it's also about sustaining positive attitudes", she writes.
Murray Shaw (1945-2023) Ed note: It is with great sadness that we note the death of Murray Shaw, one of the Support Group co-leaders for Ottawa. Murray has been a member of the group for many, many years, and was always willing to talk with all members – new and old – who needed information about WM or to learn more about their options. Murray was always sociable and welcoming. He and his wife Aileen were always volunteering their home for the summer barbecue social, and at our Christmas luncheon, Murray always insisted on paying for the wine – he [...]
Stu relates his 18-year-and-counting journey with WM, and concludes: "Nothing is going to get in my way of striking things off my 'bucket list'".