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Tuesday, November 19, 2019

In Other Words: Yes, There Are Perks of Cancer According to Author Diana Bosse

Diana Bosse holds her book.
I never wanted to be a member of the Cancer Club but I have met the most extraordinary people there and I want to introduce you to one. Her name is Diana Bosse and she is a lymphoma survivor but don’t define her by her illness.

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She was diagnosed in April 2019 and is now cured. But then something interesting and unexpected happened. Bosse is use to suffering. She works for the Alzheimer’s Association and there is no cure for that, but she sees much grace, strength, and humor in clients and family as they suffer that disease. But it’s different when it’s you.

 We met recently at The Colonel’s Kitchen for lunch to chat about our shared illness and the power of community, positive attitude, and love.

Bosse says, “When I was diagnosed, I went into the black hole for about three days. But then I thought this was not doing me any good.” But that is not productive or helpful. She had a good friend who beat lymphoma many years before and “he never missed work, never missed a beat.” She decided to take his approach because if not “I would already be giving up.”

She started posting Perks of Cancer on Facebook. Her first perk was about a false belief that she would end up with flat abs. She wrote, “Once all the swollen lymph nodes in my stomach are zapped, I expect to be bikini ready.” Absurd. Funny. But it disarms the disease and makes it not so threatening. Friends started checking in for her daily Perk. “I got up at 4:00 every morning to post my Perk. So I thought it might make a great book.” 

She says in her introduction that “Since humor is my default coping mechanism, laughing through lymphoma came naturally.” There’s a lot to be said about the healing properties of humor. She takes more of an Erma Bombeck approach to her situation like saving money by not buying shampoo.

She and illustrator Steve Wallace created The Perks of Having Cancer - An Inspirational, Positive, and Humorous View of a Not-So-Inspirational, Positive, or Humorous Situation. "Cancer is no laughing matter, but laughter can be the best medicine.  I hope this book brightens the day of others faced with a terrifying diagnosis and helps them discover their own perks in daily living."

She’s getting good feedback on her book. “It’s incredible so far. It’s only been out for a week and a half and I’ve sold about 250 copies.” She’s talking with local media and getting the word out to the world. And the world seems to likes it.

“People who have responded are people who have had cancer. They say it’s inspirational.” And it is inspirational. We don’t travel that road alone. I’ve often wondered what I need to do with this gift of survival and Bosse feels the same. Perks of Cancer is part of her gift to the world.

The book is available at, and will soon be available at local bookstores and gift shops for $20.

You can meet Diana Bosse at a book signing at Row House Gallery, 211 Main Street in Milford on Friday, November 29, 1:00-3:00 and Saturday, November 30, 2:00 - 4:00.

A portion of the book sales will be donated to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society as well as the Alzheimer’s Association of Greater Cincinnati, where she has worked for nearly 11 years as a member of its Development team.

Chuck Keller, Diana Bosse, Linda Slone at Light the Night event

1 comment:

  1. Chuck, thank you for your kind words and newly shared friendship. Another perk of having cancer, indeed!