The Cervivor Podcast: Season 1 Recap

In anticipation of the Season 2 release, we’re taking a look back on Season 1 of the Cervivor Podcast hosted by our very own Founder and Chief Visionary, Tamika Felder. It was a season where we laughed, cried, and learned from guests during Cervivor School 2017. We give honor and observance to those featured in these podcasts that are no longer with us. To be able to hear their voices, laughter and transparency is a special treat for us. We hope you think so, too.

If you haven’t listened to Season 1 yet, take a moment and do so now – currently available on Anchor.fm, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, Radio Public, and Spotify.

Recap by Episode:

  1. Cervivor’s “Most Enthusiastic” awardee, shares all the things we wanted to know but didn’t want to ask in “Dry Panties, Depends, and Urine. What Does This Have to Do with Cervical Cancer?” Turn the volume all the way up and be proud as you listen to Holly Lawson talk about obstacles during diagnosis.
  2. “Everybody’s voice makes a difference,” says Erica Frazier Stum whose school-aged son knows his mother may be gone sooner than she should be. This podcast episode is a special treat hearing Erica’s voice posthumously who passed away in 2019.
  3. “Education 101: What is Lymphedema?” Heather Banks drops a few jewels around compression undergarments, drainage, swelling, and giving yourself grace when you just … can’t. 
  4. Balancing school, work, her grandmother’s dementia, and an unexpected stage 4 cervical cancer diagnosis, Teolita Rickenbacker says she found her calling amidst an overwhelming period. “It’s nothing wrong with having cervical cancer; it’s nothing wrong with having any kind of cancer. It’s just how you define it.” Listen to “The Will to Live: How Faith Got Her Through a Cancer Diagnosis.”
  5. In “Acceptance of Death: How She is Making Her Story Matter,” Lisa Moore shared her story of diagnosis, kidney failure, and coming to grips that once she passed, her 30-year-old husband would likely start a family with someone else. “I have accepted death. I’m done being stuck, I’m done being treated. I’m ready to just live my life … it’s a different kind of hope.”
  6. The aftermath of a car accident reveals Sierra Thetford has cancer, but despite a six-month prognosis to live, she sought solace in sharing her story and becoming a gym rat. Listen to “Wrecking into Cancer: How the Gym Became Her Refuge.”
  7. Lynn Tromp talks about cervivorship globally and being open to new experiences, “I trusted my medical doctor. He spoke to me with confidence. Even though it was a trial, he spoke to me with confidence,” said Lynn who lives in South Africa. Listen to “Cancer in another country: A Tell-all From South African.”
  8. In “Toxicity in Relationships: Coping with Cancer,” Dr. Ramani Durvasula talks with Tamika Felder about feminism, narcissistic relationships, and convoluted thoughts that we can experience during diagnosis and treatment. 

Season 2 of the Cervivor Podcast is moving past the archives. Join us on Friday, May 13, 2022 for the Season 2 Episode 1 release!

We’ll be welcoming our first guest, Joslyn Chaiprasert-Paguio. Joslyn was diagnosed with the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) at the age of 18 and with cervical cancer at the age of 24. She shares her story to encourage women and future generations, like her daughter, to advocate for themselves and make their health a priority. You’ll also hear what else you can expect on this Season of the Cervivor Podcast.

For more Cervivor-related content, check out our award-winning YouTube channel, CervivorTV. Follow Cervivor on all social media platforms and sign up for our newsletter. If you would like to be interviewed for upcoming Cervivor Podcast episodes or to request content or speakers for future episodes, fill out this form or contact us at info@cervivor.org.

What Is Knowledge?

Knowledge is ________.  

You fill in the blank! 

You can always go with the first word that likely pops into your mind – POWER – but I encourage you to think outside the box a bit and go with something different…for now…

Here’s what comes up for me!

Knowledge is CONNECTION.

Anyone who is involved with Cervivor knows that connection is a huge part of “who we are.”  It is through our shared experiences that we connect via social media, Cervivor events, and relationships.  This connection is rooted not only in experience but also in the knowledge of those experiences and the important information that we come to learn because of it all.  Information about HPV, cervical cancer, prevention.  Information that, combined with connection, tends to result in “power by numbers” as a collective force of advocacy and change.  

Which leads me to my next word…

Knowledge is ACTION.

I’ve seen it happen a lot – and it’s so exciting to witness.  Once people have reliable and important information, they usually can’t help but DO something. Knowledge spurs action in some way or another.  Whether it is action for self by scheduling exams or staying on top of screening, action for others by encouraging friends and family or sharing information, or action for the cause and greater good by sharing personal stories as an advocate and impacting change in the HPV and cervical cancer space. At Cervivor, we see this continually in our patient advocates – working hard to take the information they have to “go and do” and make an impact in so many ways. 

Knowledge is PREVENTION.

Whether you’re a cervical cancer patient/survivor or not – being armed with important knowledge about HPV and cervical cancer can ultimately lead to prevention and help towards eliminating this disease that we now know is preventable.  Knowing what causes cervical cancer, being up-to-date on current screening guidelines and practices, being informed about vaccination all affect the impact that this disease can have.  When we’re informed, we can advocate for our own preventative health or that of a loved one.  When we’re informed, we know what to look for and ask for at the physician’s office.  When we’re informed, we can make decisions to reduce disease.  When we’re informed we know the importance of prevention.  

So now, I’ll circle back to the one “go-to” word that fills in that blank…

Knowledge is POWER.  

Knowledge does lead to connection, action, and prevention – but all of those add up to POWER.  Power that can save lives and impact change. As patient advocates, this informed power is a driving force of what we do, how we lead, and the change we make at Cervivor.  

I’ve seen this power firsthand at Cervivor School – one of our main outreach programs that educates and trains cervical cancer patients and survivors to become patient advocates.  It’s wonderful to witness so many at Cervivor School realize the impact they can have as we empower them with information and support. As patients and survivors, they realize the unique platform and influence they have. That combined with relevant information, their personal stories are perhaps the most potent force they hold.  

Your turn!  Knowledge is ___________.

Heather Banks is Cervivor’s Lead Advocacy Educator and recipient of the 2016 Cervivor Champion Award. As a 13-year cervical cancer survivor, she is an active advocate for HPV and cervical cancer awareness and prevention. Heather’s advocacy efforts have included testifying to the FDA in 2013 for co-testing efforts, speaking to government representatives in DC, and becoming a member of Cervivor’s Leadership Team. Heather lives in Indianapolis, Indiana where she is an Instructional Coach and Specialist at the elementary level. She loves spending time with her husband and two children; ages 16 and 13.