I have just returned from a terrific family trip to Spain and Portugal. Coming from Seattle, where it can be stormy in winter, I am happy to tell you we had sunny weather throughout. As a cancer survivor who tends to worry about the late effects of treatment from years ago or being diagnosed with another cancer, each new day was a reminder to make every day special. And they were. 

At this time of year so many people reflect on the past year and the coming one. I marvel at the past year here. We published The Web-Savvy Patient and were featured on ABC Television and in The New York Times. We connected hundreds of thousands of patients and family members with leading experts and people who can inspire them. We produced scores of new interview programs and, increasingly, did them on video (the many programs we did in December at the American Society of Hematology meeting on blood cancers and conditions is a great example). And my wife Esther and I got approval from the IRS for our new non-profit, The Patient Empowerment Network, with important support activities in the works. The team here did an outstanding job and I am so proud of them. 

While I have big goals for Patient Power for 2012, including producing programs and events in other languages and in countries throughout Europe, I am trying to live more “in the moment.” I am treasuring the discussions I have with doctors and patients and the good times with family and friends. I am trying to slow down a bit, lower stress, and celebrate what the day brings and how I can add value to it for me and others. I am trying to “de-clutter,” and turn away from unimportant little things – and people who are pre-occupied with them – and keep our focus on what’s really important. For us that is simply bringing you the best information for you to make informed healthcare decisions and to feel confident in the process. Whether it’s with a chronic condition or a cancer, we want to help you live better and live longer and know you are never alone. 

In 2011 we worked hard to establish new partnerships and work with new sponsors. And we were successful. We are indebted to them for joining with us to help you. I am confident we can do much more not just in the coming year, but in each of the coming days. We pride ourselves on being very nimble here. So we welcome your suggestions and comments. If we can do something better or that’s more helpful, please tell us. After all, it’s not just about what we do this year, it’s about what we do right now. 

Wishing you and your family the best of health!