Through Your Eyes: My Reason to Relay

Over ten years ago, I became friendly with a woman who frequently  came into my work office.  One day she came in and told me I would not be seeing her for a while.  She had been diagnosed with breast cancer and would be going through surgery and chemo and would not be working for a while.

It was a while before I saw her again, she was wearing her wig but in great spirits.  Later when she ventured to take the wig off, her hair was still short and it looked really cute on her.  I saw her every week or two until her hair was back to its former long length.  By then we had become good friends out of the office too, and would go shopping, and running around together.  I had been certified for Look Good… Feel Better before she was diagnosed and was involved in giving those classes by the time I had really gotten to know her.

She was an inspiration with her smile and being so positive through the whole process and I decided that I would start working with Relay and volunteering more time.  If she could go through that, I could use some of my time to Relay and try to help bring in more funds for finding a cure for cancer.  A couple of years ago, she joined the committee too and is now very active in Relay For Life.  I’m glad she is a Survivor and glad she is still my good friend.

Jan Poulsen is from Jefferson City, Missouri and a member of the Relay For Life of Cole County committee. To find out more information about breast cancer or Look Good…Feel Better, visit


From Your Perspective

Every day, the American Cancer Society staff have a wonderful and unique opportunity: working with survivors, volunteers, and people who are determined to fight back against cancer.

As staff, we get to see people at their best – making a fundraising goal, seeing a celebration of one, five, or twenty-five years cancer free, and at their worst – a recurrence of cancer, a newly diagnosed friend or family, and heartbreak with the news of a beloved volunteers pass away from the disease.

We get to hear the stories of excitement and heartbreak, reminding us every day what we are working toward: a world with less cancer and more birthdays.

Our Region and Division is so large, seldom do we have the opportunity to hear every story. But we would like to have the chance; and so begins our series of “Through My Eyes” posts. We’ve asked volunteers, survivors, and teams to share their story. It may be why they are involved with the Society, or how they rally together to raise money, and even their cancer journey.

If you have a story to share, please send it to Thank you for all that you have done for the American Cancer Society!