March 20, 2016
Leigh Cavender dedicates her time to the Spinal Cord Tumor Association to offer support to individuals fighting cancerous tumors.
Wellness Advocate Leigh Cavender knows first-hand how scary it is to be diagnosed with a spinal cord tumor. Despite the frightening nature of this rare cancer diagnosis, Leigh underwent the necessary treatments and is now a survivor. Once she was cancer-free, Leigh felt grateful for a clean bill of health, which inspired her to support others who are trying to navigate their way through the same diagnosis.
This inspiration to help others led Leigh to join the Spinal Cord Tumor Association, a nonprofit group dedicated to providing support for spinal cord tumor survivors, and assisting anyone currently dealing with a diagnosis. As a member of the association, Leigh helps with online discussions and support groups, providing others with resources as well as emotional support. Since Leigh underwent cancer treatments for her own spinal cord tumor, she can help others know what to expect, and provide comforting support to those who are worried about the future.
Leigh is motivated to volunteer her time and offer advice because she doesn’t want anyone with this rare cancer diagnosis to feel like they are alone. According to Leigh, this kind of cancer can be extremely draining—physically, emotionally, and financially. Even after beating the cancer, there are many lasting issues to work through like learning to walk again, dealing with nerve damage, depression, and chronic fatigue, and transitioning back into normal life. Because Leigh has survived her cancer, she wants to provide support to other survivors in the rehabilitation process.
To celebrate her one year anniversary of being cancer-free, Leigh plans to run a 5k—something she never thought she would be able to do because of her diagnosis. She hopes to raise funds by running the 5K, and will donate the proceeds to the Spinal Cord Tumor Association to help with future projects and research. To learn more about the Spinal Cord Tumor Association, or to see how you can support their cause, visit their website.