A week ago I got the chance to accompany Lauren to the OMG East summit in NYC for the stupidcancer.org foundation. And let's say in brief it was amazing. Just the energy around being with other cancer survivors and patients and knowing that everything I've been dealing with they were also dealing with in their own way.
But let's get into the details. I look a half day at work and met Lauren at South Station to take the train down. As I was going down I realized in my entire life I've only been to NYC 5/6 times including this one. I've taken the train before and though long is a much lovlier way to go. In my option.
We enjoyed an uneventful trip down (unless you count a snarky snack car attendant eventful) we arrived in the hub of Manhatten and managed to get a cab over to the hotel.
The hotel was REALLY nice. We dropped our stuff and went out in search of veggies.... Hard to travel with veggies, just saying. We managed to stumble upon this place called juice jive... It sort of had the vibe of a subway but was a juice and salad bar. We had a really nice discussion with the owner and then walked back to fall into bed. Gotta love NYC.
The conference was Saturday, so we cabbed it down to NY law school and got it going. It was BIG. There were tons of people caregivers and patients alike. In all stages of treatment. We got our swag and settled in.
The first talk was by Italia Ricci, who is the star of the abc family show Chasing Life. So that was pretty cool. She discussed her role and what it was like to play someone with cancer. It was neat and to know that someone depicting one version of a cancer journey actually does some advocacy too, and had trouble Turning it off was pretty cool. Humanity does connect us and to know someone in Hollywood who is playing such a role actually cares was neat.
The next lecture was by a psychologist who sees a lot of cancer patients. It was a very appropriate talk because she focused on getting back into life and reiterated some things I'd been thinking and feeling. I took some notes there and think they'll be helpful in the loving forward.
Lunch was provided and gave us a chance to chat with people at our table. And explore the vendors. The people at our table were cool and all I'm saying, check out the etsy store survival organs... Awesome and kind of hilarious.
The first lecture after lunch sounded good but ended up being a bit of a flop in my opinion. It was about the lobby for chemical controls in supply chains... Like how bad flame retardant is and how stuff like that isn't regulated at all. Which I kind of knew. But over all it did not give a concrete set of things to do to fix or help yourself. I am going to try these two aps: good guide and think dirty... Knowledge is power.
The last panel was a survivor panel, which I loved. The questions were thought provoking for me and interesting to hear the responses of the others. As the questions were asked If answer them in my head... I unfortunately don't remember any specifically but they were cool.
After there was a social hour which I went to for a minute, and then left to go surprise Sarah, who teaches at Lyons Den Yoga, which happened to be around the corner from where I was. That was fun too. Nothing better then surprising a friend and getting the "wait you should be in Boston face" priceless. We caught up for a bit and the I met back up with Lauren... We had places to be.
Where you say??? The Capitol Grill on Wall Street. How fun is that? Lauren had received an award so they planned fun stuff for us, her and guest, including a fancy dinner.
It was delicious and decadent and fun. We poured ourselves into bed later the. Usual but totally worth it.
Sunday was lazy. Woke up late and made our way to the spa (another surprise for me) before made my way to the bus and back to boston.
Such a great and inspiring weekend, and our hotel was close to a really famous theater. How cool was that.