If you haven't seen the video, "The Last Lecture" by Professor Randy Pausch, try to carve out 75 minutes from your schedule to hear what this model Healthy Survivor has to say about life.
A young and happily married father of three, Pausch is one of the most articulate and dynamic Healthy Survivors I've ever seen. A lover of life, he accepts that his metastatic pancreatic cancer is likely terminal. At the same time, he is working with his doctors to pursue therapies which offer a slim but real chance of slowing disease progression. Importantly, his focus is primarily on living life to the fullest and creating love- and joy-filled memories with his lovely wife and youngsters.
What amazes me is how quickly he adjusted to his diagnosis, the necessary losses and the reality of a grim prognosis. How quickly he found a balance of hope and acceptance that helps him live fully today. Soon after my diagnosis, I believed in the notions of embracing the uncertainty of life and focusing on today. But it took me years of working at it before I could really feel it and do it with my heart as well as my head.
Pausch is not a "better" Healthy Survivor than people who struggle with grief or anxiety before they find the balance that works for them. He's someone for whom the skills of Healthy Survivorship - the attitudes and actions that help him live joyfully - came more naturally. And with generosity of spirit he is using his teaching skills to show us it can be done.