Here's a way to do some good

These very deserving people need your help

Published December 18, 2012 1:00AM (EST)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       (Zach Trenholm/Salon)
(Zach Trenholm/Salon)

Dear reader,

Three years ago today I was wheeled into the operating room at UCSF Medical Center to have a sacral chordoma tumor removed from my tailbone. When they wheeled me out, they had been able to completely remove the tumor, and had determined that it had not invaded the bowel or other organs, and I could wiggle my toes, which meant I'd probably be able to walk. So my prospects for living a useful, reasonably happy life after surgery are very good. I walk a lot. Sunday I did yoga.

Also today, by extraordinary coincidence, which if one were inclined one might term synchronicity, the young and remarkable Josh Sommer, executive director of the Chordoma Foundation, was named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 list.

So, here's the thing. This is an advice column. I usually stick to the format. But now and then I talk about my own life, thinking that by being honest about what I am going through I can pave the way for others to be honest about what they are going through. And the truth is that as a result of surgery and pain medications and radiation and my change in life status, I have had my share of troubles. One thing I've found, though, is that helping other people seems to make me feel better. 

And, since I am lucky enough to have this column, I would like to help this foundation that is helping all these people, and which has helped me personally, by asking you to donate.

Now, if you're in a hurry, and you trust me when I say this is a good and honorable and important cause, you could just donate now.
 Or if you are curious, as I suspect you probably are, learn more about chordoma. There are many things you can do to help people like me -- those who have just been diagnosed as well as those who are living with the disease and the consequences of surgery and radiation.

Wow. I started off kind of glum. This is making me feel better. This is my community now. These are my people. Please help.

By Cary Tennis

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