Member Spotlights feature interviews with fellow Connect members. Learn more about members you’ve connected with and some you haven’t met yet. Nominate a member you think should share the spotlight.
JOHN: Teresa, what brought you to Mayo Clinic Connect? What motivates you to take part in the community?
@hopeful33250: I came to Mayo Clinic Connect after the diagnosis of my third neuroendocrine tumor (NET). I was feeling discouraged and had not been successful in finding others with this rare form of malignancy. I Googled support groups for NET and saw a posting for Mayo Clinic Connect.
I am motivated to take part in the community because I feel it introduces me to people who are dealing with very difficult situations in life — both physical and emotional. I find strength in their stories. Once in awhile, I’m even able to support others who are feeling burdened by their situations — I consider it a win-win relationship.
Connect is a safe place to converse with others. The moderators maintain an environment that reflects kindness and support. They manage to keep the ground of Connect cultivated so that we can all grow stronger together.
JOHN: What groups do you participate in?
@hopeful33250: The two groups that I work with as the volunteer mentor are the Neuroendocrine Tumors (NETs) and Parkinson’s Disease groups, as I have personal experience with both. However, I also venture into other areas where I find strong people who share their experiences, their struggles and, of course, their strengths.
I especially enjoy following and posting with the Transplants group and the Mental Health group. In these groups there are many very strong members dealing with significant problems, and sometimes lifelong problems, who are working on building up their own strength and support system for their lives. I am pleased to watch their growth (and mine) as we share together.
JOHN: What surprised you the most about Connect?
@hopeful33250: What surprised me was the way so many people are willing to share just where they are at the present time (and often that changes from day to day) as they face different challenges in their lives. I also appreciate the way the community of Connect strengthens each member. Members help each other, give encouraging words of advice and share from their own experiences. In this way, no one ever feels alone in their personal health challenges.
JOHN: What energizes you, or how do you find balance in your life?
@hopeful33250: I’m energized by living a balanced life. I’m somewhat of an introvert, so I do find energy by finding some time alone — that includes reading and devotional time. I also find balance by exercise. I belong to several exercise groups, including a Parkinson’s dance class and a sitting Tai-Chi class, which all help with coordination, balance and range of motion, which are important to those of us who have chronic health problems and are aging.
In addition to alone time, I have a great group of friends and family that I get together with. We enjoy conversation, movies, plays and music. My relationships at church are especially important to me, as it helps me to grow my faith.
JOHN: Tell us about your favorite pastime or activity.
@hopeful33250: I also enjoy music and activities surrounding music. I’m part of a therapy choir that brings music to folks with closed head injuries as well as other neurological problems. Music has a way of bringing a lift to everyone’s health as well as their spirits.
Since I love to read, I’m also part of a book discussion group at the local library. This encourages me to read at least one book a month (but usually I read more than that).
JOHN: Do you have a favorite quote, life motto or personal mantra?
@hopeful33250: Knowledge is power and attitude is everything!
JOHN: What do you appreciate the most in your friends?
@hopeful33250: Their kindness, their loyalty and their support. It sets an example for me to do likewise.