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Dec 28, 2012 09:09AM
Howdy to all --- I went 'home' to visit my 83-yr-old-BC-survivor Mom in KC -- it was the first visit since July... (before my MRI/biopsy/lumpectomy/dbl-mastectomy). It was great to see my sis and mom, but I can't tell you how happy I am to finally be back in New Mexico (where I SO belong :) Thought I'd check in here and wish everyone "Happy Holidays"!
I don't know if any of you subscribe to daily messages (uplifting/point-of-view-changing) - But I belong to two that I generally get some good from: The Daily Om and Mary Morrisey.
Some of you have said that you don't feel that you have much to offer right now... that your daily treatments/thoughts-about cancer have you riveted in a quiet/painful period that seems to exclude meeting new people -- at least in a romantic way. So -- what about finding a new way to view the current events in your life? A way that is invigorating, and spiritually growthful? A way that provides the ideas for meaty conversation and mind-expansion? Honestly -- who would NOT be attracted to someone who was able to find the positives in challenging times?
With all the cancer-related changes in my life, it is helpful/empowering for me to consider the larger picture and the possibility of growth from what others (and me a couple of years ago) might potentially view as 'tragedy'. Anyway -- today's "Om' was particularly on-target for me -- so I thought I might share it with all of you... (see below) ... and Mary Morrisey is offering a free online course tomorrow about deciding what you want in your life (specifically for 2013) -- and then how to set-into-motion the mental/emotional path to reach those goals... the link to the Mary Morrisey (free) course is:
Below is from today's 'Daily Om': (you can sign up for your own daily messages if you like -- just google "Daily Om"
When we experience change in our life we can control our response and reaction to the changes that are happening.
Transformation is a universal constant that affects our lives from the moment we are born until we leave earthly existence behind. At the root of all growth, we find change. Occasionally, change and the circumstances leading up to it are a source of extraordinary joy, but more often than not they provoke feelings of discomfort, fear, or pain. Though many changes are unavoidable, we should not believe that we are subject to the whims of an unpredictable universe. It is our response to those circumstances that will dictate the nature of our experiences. At the heart of every transformation, no matter how chaotic, there is substance. When we no longer resist change and instead regard it as an opportunity to grow, we find that we are far from helpless in the face of it.
Our role as masters of our own destinies is cemented when we choose to make change work in our favor. Yet before we can truly internalize this power, we must accept that we cannot hide from the changes taking place all around us. Existence as we know it will come to an end at one or more points in our lives, making way for some new and perhaps unexpected mode of being. This transformation will take place whether or not we want it to, and so it is up to us to decide whether we will open our eyes to the blessings hidden amidst disorder or close ourselves off from opportunities hiding behind obstacles.
To make change work for you, look constructively at your situation and ask yourself how you can benefit from the transformation that has taken place. As threatening as change can seem, it is often a sign that a new era of your life has begun. If you reevaluate your plans and goals in the days or weeks following a major change, you will discover that you can adapt your ambition to the circumstances before you and even capitalize on these changes. Optimism, enthusiasm, and flexibility will aid you greatly here, as there is nothing to be gained by dwelling on what might have been. Change can hurt in the short term but, if you are willing to embrace it proactively, its lasting impact will nearly always be physically, spiritually, and intellectually transformative.
Anyway -- (Linda here again) -- I wish the very best for each of you in the New Year! I find that these 'mind-expanding' ideas really help me to see that I have a daily (actually a minute-to minute) choice in EVERY situation -- do I chose 'joy' or 'despair'? 'Acceptance and enlightenment' or 'anger and frustration'. This ability to see each circumstance as an opportunity to CHOOSE -- brings me peace and a feeling of being more in control of at least my 'inner' world!
Personally, I thought E-Harmony was great -- in part because the questions others asked me forced me to look honestly at my reality -- and shift within myself to BECOME someone that I myself would want to date! The first year on EH was about finding myself -- not finding a man. I spent hours communicating with strangers -- seeing 'what worked' and what didn't. I began to realize that I had some recurring traits that weren't very attractive... so I worked on them. Began self-monitoring more -- offering 'opinions' less often, and learned to ask better questions. I found out what was important to ME... began defining who I wanted to become -- where I wanted to live -- what sort of work and life I hoped to have in my future. All these things came about through 'deciding what sort of man I wanted to bring into my life' --
The cool thing was that as my questions and answers got deeper -- my connections were much more successful! And I began to see each connection as a potential learning experience -- Viewing each man as a lesson-to-be-learned. It was really exciting to attempt to see what each new person had to offer! I didn't need to date each person -- I just needed to be open to seeing what thier life-experience might have to offer me -- (and sometimes what I might offer them).
In five years of EH although I was matched with about 3000 men (6 new ones every day) I only corresponded seriously with maybe 30 -- and only physically met 6-7 of those. Each lived far away (in a beautiful place like Montana, New Mexico, the mountains of Arizona, The Rockies in Colorado, the Blue Ridge Mtns) -- and since I love to travel, each of these (very special) men offered me the opportunity to see some gorgeous country, too! I 'knew' each of them pretty well before agreeing to meet -- lots and lots of long emails and phone calls prior to accepting the plane ticket -- and each was a gentleman.
(This is not to say that every exchange on EH was a pleasant one -- there are some nuts there, just like everywhere, but I found if I refrained from 'flirting' and stuck to fairly challenging conversations about concepts/ideas -- discussed attitudes and dreams and important life-changing-experiences -- the 'good ones' floated pretty rapidly to the top of the pile). Anyway -- in the long run, I had a few several-month-long relationships -- and a few meet-for-several-days-and-realize-it-isn't-right experiences -- ending with this current relationship -- 18-months and going strong -- even through cancer. In fact -- I think my cancer has intensified our relationship, and brought out our basic 'human-ness' (disposing of the trivialities).
Anyway -- I wish you each the BEST New Year of your lives -- the only thing keeping it from being so it the way you choose to process the information. None of us (even those without cancer) know what tomorrow will bring or how much time we have here. Whether you decide to open yourselves to a new romantic relationship or not -- My wish for each of us is that we make whatever time we have be joyous and growthful and full of love!
Dx IDC 5/30/12. LumpX 8/24/12 (1 of 2 nodes + for BC) DCIS/tumors in margins. BMX + DIEP recon 11-6-2012. (11 more nodes x’d/none +). Began Letrozole 12-3-2012 (NO SE's so far!). Cording/pain/limited ROM in node-removed arm- but PT helping a lot!
5/30/2012, IDC, <1cm, Stage II, Grade 1, 1/13 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
08/24/2012 Lumpectomy (Left); Lymph Node Removal: Sentinel Lymph Node Dissection (Left)
11/06/2012 Mastectomy (Both); Lymph Node Removal: Axillary Lymph Node Dissection (Left); Prophylactic Mastectomy (Right); Reconstruction: DIEP flap (Both)