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I tried to come here last night but the board seemed to be down. I came again this morning to wish everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year and learned that once more a controversy is threatening the stability of this board.

I don't know what started it. I haven't read that much. I can only assume and I am glad that I didn't know about it until now. As you all know I am very openionated and would probably have said something that would have put me right in the thick of it. This way I can see the problem from a different level and want to make some coments.

There have been times when I have not recieved the response that I had hoped for to one of my posts. Sometimes that has hurt and disappointed me but I know it is because I represent a battle that was lost in most peoples eyes. I can certainly understand that. When I was where most of you are I didn't want any reminders of what could happen. I know as well or maybe even better than most how important hope is and how fragile it can be.

Everyone of us here are part of a very large and diverse family. Once you join here you will always belong. In our worst nightmares we could never have fortold that someday we would have a need to be here and certainly none of us would have chosen the circumstances that brought us here. The thing is we are here. We have one common enemy, Lung Cancer. No one here is the enemy. We are all in a struggle for survival even those of us who don't have cancer and have already lost our loved one. No one from the outside no matter how caring or compassionate they are will ever understand what it is like unless fate choses to play the same dirty trick on them that it did us.

My family is very large with very diverse ideas. We are all highly opinionated, especially where politics is concerned. My youngest son and I are about as far apart as you can get on that subject. For the most part we try to avoid the subject but often we end up in some very heated arguments. We are not the only ones. My point is there are two things that none of us would ever do. No one will bail out on our family just because things get rough and we certainly would never ask another to leave the family. It is just something that is not done!

Look around you at the world right now. There is so much pain and suffering. We don't really need more here. I can't remember his name but a very wise man once said something that goes like this " I may not agree with what you say but I will fight to the death for your right to say it". Difference of opinions cause us to ask questions and seek other avenues. Without those differences we would still be stuck in the Middle Ages. We need those differences because without them nothing will ever be accomplished.

So my friends, my special family, please let's heal the wounds and start the New Year off right. Take that anger and frustration and use it against the real enemy, Lung Cancer. We may not help find a cure but then again who knows? The one thing that we can do is use that energy to fight that deadly attitude that we have all encounted, the attitude that adds such havoc to lives already turned upside down.

I wish all of you a very Happy and Healthy New Year but above all I wish you Peace, Understanding and the Will to forgive and start anew. God Bless you all and as a person very dear to us would say "I am praying for us all".

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