Cancer can be a teacher

Each of us have an epiphany moment that changed your perspective. It changed your life.
Breast Cancer diagnosis (twice) and a rare primary brain tumor diagnosis did that for me. Getting outside in nature reminds me to be in the moment. I’m still here and can still do it.
Consistent movement, like walking, hiking and running, helped me; running helped me the most to deal with the grief each time. 
The word “running” makes me think of freedom, independence, happiness, and being present. It has helped with my mindset in a very positive way.

A woman was recently referred to me after being diagnosed with breast cancer. Let’s call her Rhonda. Her surgery is scheduled for February 13. She needed some positive encouragement from someone who’s been down that path. We talked for about an hour, she started laughing, appreciated the humor and my positive perspective. We really connected. Rhonda said she loved me at the end of our call. 

I told her it’s going to be okay. 

A health issue, like a cancer diagnosis, can be a difficult and daunting challenge to face, but it doesn’t have to be a negative experience overall. By embracing the challenge of it and transforming it into a learning experience, you can discover new things about yourself and find strength in times of difficulty.

Those health issues and the related experiences taught me a lot. In hindsight, I found it to be a source of inspiration and strength. This also strengthened my marriage and reminded me of who and what are really important.

I like to view Cancer as a Teacher.

Cancer teaches us the importance of self-care. When you’re dealing with cancer, you quickly learn that taking care of yourself is a top priority. You have to be gentle with yourself, eat well, get enough rest, and exercise.*

*These lessons apply to everyone, not just those with cancer. A little self-care can go a long way in improving you overall health and well-being. It’s often referred to as being proactive.

Cancer teaches us about the value of life. When we’re faced with the reality of our own mortality, we are forced to re-evaluate what is truly important to us. Many people who have been diagnosed with cancer report a feeling of newfound appreciation for life and a heightened sense of gratitude for the people and experiences they cherish.

That type of experience can inspire us to live each day with more purpose and to make the most of the time we have.

Cancer teaches us the value of laughter. Yes, you heard that right. It’s easy to get caught up in the fear and uncertainty, but laughter is one of the best medicines. Cancer patients develop a unique sense of humor, a coping mechanism that helps them stay positive and maintain some sanity. And if we can learn to laugh at ourselves, life becomes a little bit easier.

Cancer teaches us to live in moment. When you’re facing a life-threatening illness, the future can feel uncertain. Instead of dwelling on what might happen, cancer patients learn to focus on what’s happening right now. Savor each moment and appreciate the small things in life.

My 2nd breast cancer experience is what prompted me to write the book, Real Things: 6 Ways to Embrace Life. I didn’t know how much time I had when writing that first book.

Cancer teaches us about the power of resilience. Facing a cancer diagnosis can be challenging, and many are surprised by the strength they find within themselves. Cancer patients often discover a remarkable resilience, a determination to fight and face the challenges.

Resilience can also be a source of inspiration, helping us overcome other obstacles and challenges in our lives. I had the determination to run again, the doctors knew that running made me happy, and had physical therapy to make it happen at the right pace.

Cancer also teaches us about the importance of community. Cancer patients quickly learn that they can’t do it alone. They need the support of friends, family, and medical professionals is essential. When facing a difficult situation, it is comforting to know that you are not alone, and others are there to support us.

This experience can inspire us to be more supportive of others and work together to create stronger, more resilient communities. Who doesn’t love a good support system?

Learning from an illness can help you develop resilience and gain insight into how your body works. It can also provide an opportunity to slow down, take time for self-care, and appreciate the little things in life.

So don’t let any health issue define you – instead use it as an opportunity to grow!

  • Understand your body’s reaction to illness.
  • Learn about and practice different modalities of healing, such as yoga, meditation, movement therapy, even counseling.
  • Find support from others who struggle with the same health issue as you do.
  • Know what triggers and aggravates your illness and make sure to avoid them.
  • Evaluate the quality of your life and tools you can use to improve it.

If you know someone who’s dealing with a health issue, please share this content with them. It can brighten their day!


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