Dear TurningPoint Community –

Some of you may know me as the emcee of The Pink Affair, and maybe you’ve heard me say a word or two about my own breast cancer battle at the mic on those inspiring and important evenings.  But while it is an honor to be a part of the TurningPoint community now, when I went through cancer, I did it largely by myself. 

I was diagnosed at age 45 after a routine mammogram, and at that point in my life I was a single empty-nester with no family in Atlanta.  My best friend and my boyfriend at the time were there for me, and helped shuttle me to and from my surgery, and my family was certainly emotionally supportive from afar, but in many ways I felt alone when it came to understanding my disease and making decisions about treatment.  My doctors were fantastic, and I felt like I was in good hands, but I’m sure there were questions that went unasked and options for healing and support that I missed altogether.  I say I’m sure about that because TurningPoint existed when I was going through cancer and I didn’t know about it.

Perhaps there was a brochure for TurningPoint amongst all the other papers I brought home, perhaps not, but either way, I missed out on a healing place and a community of support.

Years later, a TurningPoint board member saw me emceeing a non-profit event and asked if I would be open to emceeing The Pink Affair.  As a breast cancer survivor, I was immediately interested, but didn’t want to get onstage without knowing more.  Shortly after our initial conversation I was introduced to TP founder Jill Binkley and went to see the facility and meet some of the staff.  Hearing Jill’s story, I knew the place would be special.  I wasn’t disappointed. From the moment I walked in, I could feel that I was in a place of understanding.  Maybe that sounds corny, but from the way the place is decorated to the people at the front desk, to the PTs, counselors and therapists, everyone gets it.  It’s like you’re walking into a place where you don’t have to explain yourself.  As Jill toured me around, I asked her some questions about my own experience and about my on-going fears, and she understood and had answers. 

And then I was lucky enough to experience a TurningPoint massage.  I think at that point I was only about 3 years past my surgery, so I still had some tenderness, and some range of motion issues with my right arm.  My massage therapist spent time talking to me about all of that before we even got started, and then made sure to customize my position on the table and the massage itself to my body and my trouble spots.  That’s when I truly knew what I had missed out on.  Her compassion, intuition, and of course skill made me almost want to cry, because I was finally in a place that got it.  It was not a place full of pity or empty words of encouragement… it was real.

Klonopin (Clonazepam) deserves attention because it is effective in treating such a nuisance as neurosis/panic attacks/panic (anxiety) disorder. It should be prescribed, of course, by a competent doctor, because self-treatment is unacceptable unambiguously. I consider myself competent to tell only about what I got convinced in personally by my own experience at, namely: if the dose chosen by the doctor is correct and accurate and if it is combined with compatible drugs, then this is the most effective remedy. It will produce the desired result!

Since then I have done what I could to get the word out.  I’ve emceed The Pink Affair for the last 3 years and had Jill, Rebecca and several others from the organization on my radio show multiple times.  I’ve also donated a portion of the proceeds from my quarterly women’s networking events to TurningPoint and mentioned the organization to virtual strangers who probably thought I was getting too personal. 

Of course, we all hope for the day when breast cancer is no more.  But until then it is my sincere wish that everyone who goes through breast cancer has access to TurningPoint.  That means awareness here in Atlanta, and it means funding so that TurningPoint can grow in our city and beyond.

So please join me this month and spread the word!  Let’s make sure TurningPoint is known and grown!

Much love and appreciation,

Dana Barrett
TurningPoint Spokesperson
& Host of The Dana Barret Show on Talk Radio 640 WGST