Saturday, July 12, 2014

'Chasing Life' or Coping with a Cancer Diagnosis

I have been watching a new show on ABC Family called 'Chasing Life'. I was drawn to it for two reasons - its based in Boston and its about someone with cancer. I always like to check out the shows based locally - to see how good or bad a job they do. This one doesn't even attempt Boston accents which is good (because they never get them right) and is entire unrealistic in that a three generation family lives in a townhouse on Beacon Hill, which probably lists for a few million.

Here is the 'official' show description:

"Chasing Life follows twenty-something April (Italia Ricci), a smart and quick-witted aspiring journalist, who is trying to work her way up the ladder at a Boston newspaper by trying to impress her hard-nosed editor. When not pursuing the latest scoop, April tries to balance her ambitious career with her family – her widowed mom Sara, rebellious little sister Brenna and her grandmother. Just as things start to look up at work, home and on the romance front with co-worker Dominic, April gets the devastating news from an estranged uncle that she has cancer."

But I digress. What I do like about it is that the star, April, is coping with a diagnosis of leukemia. While yes there is the drama of a boyfriend, a BFF who is a drama queen, a bunch of family crap which can be entertaining, the issue of coping with a cancer diagnosis resounds with me.

I have watched the first two episodes and she has only told her BFF about her diagnosis and can't seem to find the right time to tell anyone else. She can't find the words, she can't find the time, she doesn't  know what to say. Her mother, sister, grandmother, co-workers, and boyfriend do not know.

While I fear the show is playing off what I feel is the latest trend that it is 'hip' to have cancer coming out of Hollywood - there seem to be more and more movies and shows about this - I can relate to this one. I dreamed about how she is dealing vs how I dealt with sharing my cancer news. As someone who went through the issues she is facing, I feel the show is realistic in its depiction of the issues. Usually if someone hasn't walked the walk with coping with cancer, they cannot talk the talk.

I plan to continue watching the show and am optimistic it will not deteriorate into fluff or stupidity. I am a few episodes behind which are safely stored on the Tivo until I get to them.

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