Two weeks ago I was fortunate to attend Gilda’s Club Seattle 15th Annual “Surviving with Style” Fashion Show and Luncheon along with some fellow Hackerites. If you are unfamiliar with Gilda’s Club, they are a non-profit organization that supports people living with cancer along with family members, partners and friends, founded by the comedian Gilda Radner.
Cynthia Nixon of Sex and the City fame was the celebrity guest speaker and is a cancer survivor herself.
Two big take-aways for me: First the fashion show – featuring models who are cancer survivors, wearing the latest fashions from local designers. Steve Rabble and Angela Russell from KIRO TV narrated the show as models strode up and down the long runway in the Ballroom of the Westin Hotel, and gave us a small glimpse into their daily lives. The models were self-assured (even those wearing 5” heels, as well as those models under the age of 4); all had amazing smiles, and a sparkling attitude that said “cancer does not define me”. All of them beautiful!
Secondly, Cynthia Nixon inspired everyone with her personal cancer story and that of her mother’s. She was informative, entertaining, brought tears to our eyes, and was wonderfully encouraging. She admitted she didn’t always have an answer to someone’s inquiry about how she is doing, but then realized she didn’t have to know all the answers because someone else does, and that is Gilda’s Club. Gilda’s Club is a community for cancer patients and their families that helps in a variety of ways: from understanding cancer, to wellness advice; crafting classes and an art studio; Music Mondays if you’re into singing or playing an instrument; cooking classes for kids; fun in the playroom aptly named Noogieland; and lectures and yoga and dance and singing and quilting and writing and the list goes on and on. And hugs, most definitely there are hugs.
The fashion show and models were amazing and made you stop for a moment and revel in their exuberance of life. And it made me think…what would I do in the same circumstance? And how can I help? Give of my time? Donations? We at Hacker Group have embraced Gilda’s Club in celebration of our 25th Anniversary – go check-em out and see where you can help – you will find yourself smiling the rest of the day - I promise!