About Me

My photo

I am a wife, a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a cousin & a best friend. I am a poet, a lawyer & a survivor. I've learned that God will give you a second chance.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

For my American friends, today is Thanksgiving. To all, may your lives be filled with blessings, joy, and much thanksgiving.

If you enjoy my blog and would like to follow me on Facebook, I can be found at The Reluctant Survivor. Now on Twitter @relucsurvivor.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

For Bryan

What is the point of my life?

I lived, and for that I am eternally grateful. I know that God has a purpose for my life, and a purpose because I lived. I struggle with trying to define that purpose, but I know that God will show me if I just let Him. Right now, for today, I will pay it forward because I can. And I think that is the best that I can do with my life in order to say “thank you.”

One day you will see a need, be called to a task that you can fulfill. It might even be something that you never dreamed you would or could do. But you find yourself saying “yes.” And as you know, saying “yes” is scary for me. Yet God has brought me to today, to this moment.

We are all given resources to say “yes.” Sometimes those resources are simple, like a spare bed or time. We aren’t always called to say “yes” when confronted with a need. Sometimes our response is to pray or make a connection so that the need is met. But when the answer before me is so clearly “yes” I find that I can no longer say “no.”

May you live in the moment and be blessed with the ability to say “yes” when you can.

If you enjoy my blog and would like to follow me on Facebook, I can be found at The Reluctant Survivor. Now on Twitter @relucsurvivor.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Being 49

I remember when my mother turned 49 she spent the whole year saying “I’m going to be 50.” We laugh about it now, but the sad part of this is that she missed being 49. I turned 49 in July. At 49 I am discovering that this is a year of observation. My first observation is that I wonder how I got here. To 49. You see, I was just 47.

As I think about becoming 49 I realize I was never 48. Instead I spent the year being five. I was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 43. So as I hit 48, I also became five. Every month it was “five years since…”
Being five was not a bad thing. It marked a milestone. Most cancers have a high five year survival rate, which means you are still alive after five years. However, it doesn’t mean you are cancer free or that your cancer hasn’t recurred. It just means you are still alive after five years. But reaching the five year mark with no evidence of disease is huge. I told my oncologist I feel as if I am back into the general population. (She smiled).
Another observation is an awareness of the breast cancer community. I follow a couple of blogs. I read the news. And I paid attention during Pink October. By paying attention I learned a few things. The most important thing I learned has to do with metastatic (Stage IV) breast cancer. If you read my posts during October you know that 30% of early stage breast cancer will recur and metastasize. Yes, it means that 70% have no recurrence and die of something else. Hopefully old age. But this statistic is not discussed as part of treatment. And 30% seems awfully high for a disease that is supposed to have such good prognosis.
What shocked me was to read about a real life person whose cancer came back 20 years later only to metastasize a few years after that. That is correct – 25 years after initial diagnosis! So it doesn’t end after five years. This is why I am taking care of myself; eating healthy, working at being a healthy weight, and exercising. (I encourage this for everyone).
I am also observing how my life is progressing. I sometimes wonder how my professional life as a lawyer and compliance specialist fits with my personal life as a breast cancer survivor and blogger. I know there’s a connection, and lately I’ve been watching as these two worlds come together. Right now it’s difficult to explain, but I’m sure there will be posts generated once I find the words. For now I’m going to observe, and see how God unfolds this new year. A year of being 49.
If you enjoy my blog and would like to follow me on Facebook, I can be found at The Reluctant Survivor and now on Twitter @relucsurvivor.