Today, I received a surprise in the mail from my Mom: a beautiful silver chain with a pendant. On the pendant are inscribed the following words:
What Cancer Cannot Do …
invade the soul,
conquer the spirit,
steal eternal life
or silence courage.
The pendant’s arrival date is timely, as this is the first day of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Although *my* cancer isn’t breast cancer, I reflected on the many women whom I know, my Mom included, who are survivors of breast cancer. And some who, despite their valiant efforts, did not survive the fight.
Please encourage those women around you — and men, when applicable, because breast cancer isn’t gender-selective — to get regular check-ups and to join in the fight not only against breast cancer but against cancer of all kinds.
Pass on my pendant’s inscription to them, too. Let them know that despite the scariness of cancer, it is decidedly not all gloom and doom. Cancer is nothing more than a disease process. There have been phenomenal advances in its treatment and in improving both the quality and the quantity of life after a cancer diagnosis.
For me, cancer has been a blessing in disguise that has allowed me to:
- take time to smell the roses
- prioritize my life goals
- marvel at the kindness of others, including total strangers
- understand that there are but a few degrees of separation between each of us and the next person
- gain a greater appreciation of my spiritual beliefs, and
- focus not on the bad but on all the many wonderful things in my life