We’ve all got the t-shirts that say “Be Brave”, right? Well, I’ve been listening a lot lately to Brene Brown, who says in order to be brave, we must be vulnerable.
“There is no courage without being all in. If you can do something and not feel vulnerable, it’s probably not that brave.”
Brene Brown nails it! One of the most vulnerable things we can do is talk about an illness and our health. So here I go:
In late 2016, my dermatologist informed me I had been diagnosed with a very early stage of melanoma. Early detection and surgery saved my life. At first, I thought I would keep my diagnosis silent. Why did I need to share something that made me feel and appear vulnerable?
With the help of friends, I decided to go public with my diagnosis. And what came next shocked me. There was not only an outpouring of support, but also many people thanked me. “I have not gotten a skin check in years, but after I read your story, I scheduled an appointment,” said one male executive at CBS. Another middle-aged gentleman who works at CBS showed up in our CBS This Morning studio with a big bandage on his forward and said, “Hey, Norah. Because of you, I got checked and they removed a skin cancer.”
And for my part, since my diagnosis and surgery, I’ve continued to see my dermatologist every 4-5 months for a check-up and have been much more mindful about my exposure to the sun.
By sharing our experiences, we are helping to inform one another and protect one another. This is part of our common humanity. So thank you for helping me learn that my vulnerability makes me brave, and let’s pray, will help save lives.
Want to read more? Catch up on Norah’s battle and story she shared with us from last year