Tuesday, July 18, 2017


July 18th is my cancerversary, which is a pretty good excuse to eat cake. And while I won’t say that my diagnosis was a blessing, God did bless me with a new and improved perspective.

Everyone asks what I would tell my 38-year old self who was just diagnosed with breast cancer? Well, I’d squeeze her, make her a cup of joe, and share what the last year has taught me. I’d tell her that no matter what, God’s got this, and regardless of her outcome, one thing she can control is how she reacts, how she lives, and possibly how she dies. I would add that people are wonderful. They really are. There’s nothing like cancer to remind you of the essential kindness of people. Lay down your independence and accept the offers of prayers, dinner and hugs –- sustenance through the tougher days and nights ahead.

Cancer is a team effort and, just like raising a child, it takes a village. There’s little purpose to tackling it alone. Support is invaluable.

You will cry. But you’ll also laugh. A lot. Pockets of joy come unexpectedly: coffee with friends, packages/letters in the mail, people randomly grabbing you and hugging you at church, grocery store, or parking lot. Meals served to you in bed, prepared by your kids, is definitely a highlight.

Hair. Smair. It grows back, okay?! Don’t get caught up in the vanity of all that. Just breathe and be thankful you are living another day. Plus, chances are there are wigs that look a whole lot better than your real hair anyway.

You can do this. And in a year’s time, you’ll be where I am now – physically different and a little bruised, but wiser, braver, and stronger. Just consider all you will have conquered!

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