Notes on October: Tough Stuff Month

When it comes to enjoyable topics – we’ve run the gamut this month. With Inspiration Month – we have really tried to highlight what makes Health Activists tick – all leading up to the announcement of our 2012 WEGO Health Activist Awards. Now that those are launched and will continue going strong until the deadline of December, 31st — we can look at other, more intense topics.


Health Activism, like life, isn’t all sunshine and celebration. Being a patient, caregiver, healthcare professional – or person – isn’t easy. We don’t have to list all of the challenges, struggles, and painful experiences that make life hard. You know what they are. And we hope that we can delve into these topics this month.


If we’ve learned anything from Health Activists – it is that it is through darkness, hardship, pain, and hurt – strength and the power of the human spirit is most radiant. Without the “tough stuff,” the sweet, amazing, wonderful stuff wouldn’t be quite as triumphant. Without the stories of overcoming challenges and perserving – we wouldn’t have this “hope” that so many of us need to keep going. For the most part, Health Activists are absolutely fearless – and, even when they aren’t, they are honest. They call out that fear and address it in whatever way they can. This process helps us all feel less alone and less isolated in fear – and brings us a little closer to feeling better.


So, on to October. We’ve named our Editorial theme: Tough Stuff Month – because there is really no better way to categorize all of the topics we are looking at. In true facilitator-of-conversation-fashion, I’m planning on letting you dictate where we go this month. What are the toughest topics, to you and your community members?


With the help of the WEGO Health team, we’ve collected topics that we think Tough Stuff Month will encompass – but you always surprise us. And since we’re here for you – we want you to take this month where you want to go with it. What topics are the most challenging you’ve face in your community, your healthcare journey, and in your life?


Because we love encouraging the writers in all of you (and giving you ideas to help you out), we’ve created a collection of topics to write about. All of which are “tough.” Most of them are really serious, painful, and intense. But maybe that’s why you should write about them. We’ve labeled this collection of blog topics a “Catharsis Carnival” and hope it will serve as a way to gather your thoughts and release them. That why, for the first time, we’re really encouraging anonymity.


We hope you’ll check out all the topics – and consider writing about some of them. We’d like to share excerpts from your submissions throughout October – bringing your strength to others and bringing light to these topics that so often go un-discussed. It is only through talking about these things can we feel less alone – and start to heal.


If you’ve like to write about a topic at length – and have it featured here as a Guest Post – we’d love to have you. Leave a comment here or send an email to with your idea. If you’ve already written about a “tough” topic – and would like to repost it here, we’d also love to be able to share that as well.


We’ll also be kicking off “Tough Stuff Month” with a Health Activist Tweetchat (#HAchat) on Tuesday, October 2nd at 3pm ET: we hope you’ll come brainstorm tough stuff with us and share some moments that really moved you in your journey.


Looking forward to opening up about these tough topics with you. We know that this month will be, in its own visceral way, just as inspirational as “Inspiration Month” – because any time we talk about what’s real, we get to the heart of why we’re all here.




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