We usually reserve this time of year for reflection. I know not why exactly. Perhaps because families come together and families together elicit memories. These memories can vary from family to family. My family has many wonderful memories: our children growing up, new grandchildren, athletic events, Christmas customs and many more. One memory that has taken a priority in my family -- cancer. Christmas 2007 I spent in bed recovering from sarcoma surgery. Christmas 2015 will be a celebration of CANCER FREE, the two most wonderful words we cancer folks like to hear.

Remember: When you want to go fast, go alone. When you want to go far, go together (African Proverb). We cancer folks are a family, so from my family to yours, A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS and a VERY HEALTHY & HAPPY NEW YEAR.

Be well
- Joe

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About the Author

Joe Vitale was born on a mini-farm in Waukesha County to Italian immigrant parents in 1938, and spent most of his life in and around Waukesha. He attended Catholic schools in the city, graduating from Catholic Memorial High School, and went to Carroll College in his undergraduate years. He had a career in education that spanned nearly four decades, starting out as a teacher and, after postgraduate work, becoming an administrator in the School District of Waukesha. He was a curriculum director in environmental education and later a principal. He was diagnosed in 2007 with myxofibrosarcoma. "My good fortune of being cancer free has helped me realize how fragile we are," Joe says. "The past five years I have been actively involved with the Sarcoma Support group, now the Cancer Support Group and the Sarcoma Event Day ... I have been extremely fortunate with my outcome and hence the time to pay back."

Jack Henning

Joe;May you and your family have a Blessed Christmas and a great New Year.As a cancer survivor,Christmas and Easter takes on a hole new meaning of this present physical life.Merry Christmas to all the cancer patients and their families.

Jack Henning and Family

P:S. Joe: I am looking forward to your Christmas blog for 2016