Symbol Party

Community is such a critical part of hope and recovery that it appears three times on the Hope Tree. More than any other symbol, community embodies what it will take to recover from this cancer journey. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton first coined the phrase “it takes a village.” And it will take your very own personal village to weather this storm intact. This African symbol for community describes its function and purpose so perfectly.

This interesting symbol of friendship and interdependence shows the teeth and the tongue playing interdependent roles in the mouth. It translates as “Ese Ne Tekrema” which literally means “the teeth and the tongue.” They may come into conflict, but they must find a way to work together without hurting one another in the process.

On the Hope Tree we liken this to the community of systems within our bodies that are juxtaposed with one another as we go through treatment. They perform a delicate dance – like teeth and tongue – as they must thrive, but extinguish the cancer at the same time.

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Food For Thought

Without hope, nothing could begin; hope offered a real chance to reach a better end. Hope helps overcome hurdles that we otherwise could not scale, and it moves us forward to a place where healing can occur.

- by Jerry Groopman, MD