Ok, wait, let me explain! For the last month, I have been reading the book The Magic by Rhonda Byrne. Along with a group of nearly 100 other women, we have done daily assignments over the course of 28 days in an attempt to make Gratitude an ingrained habit. I have embraced this book and even if I have to do the whole book over several times, it will be worth it to make thankfulness second nature.
On day 26, the assignment was to choose ONE mistake you made in your life. Of course, I don’t see my breast cancer as a mistake I made. Rather, let’s call it a Life Disturbance! Could I have prevented it by eating better and proper weight maintenance throughout my life? Maybe, maybe not. My BC was estrogen receptive and so I currently take medication (Tamoxifen) to block estrogen production to prevent a recurrence. I keep reading how being overweight makes you produce more estrogen. I AM trying to eat better! It isn’t easy for me because I do believe I have some food addiction issues. But, that is a whole other blog post! But, let me bring myself back around to my main point of how this “life disturbance” brought many blessings to my life.
Here they are:
- My husband stepped up to the plate and helped me, supported me and was right there in it with me every step of the way. This strengthened our marriage in many ways.
- I made friends with my oncology nurse, Jan, who was wonderful and so upbeat and we still keep in touch with each other today. My surgeons were two incredibly bright young women doctors- a blessing because they were easy to relate to. My occupational therapist, Linda, was the kindest easiest person to be around. I felt amazed how all these wonderful women were there making a tough time easier. What angels!
- I can now relate to many women who have and are going through treatment for cancer – a special club you don’t want to be part of. Instant rapport happens when you share your story with these ladies.
- The chance to help others and answer their questions so they are not so overwhelmed. I’m not much of a prima donna, so I talk to them like the BC is just another illness to manage and get through.
- I qualify for free daily exercise through the ThriveWell program in San Antonio just for being a cancer survivor!
- My daughter was super good about my diagnosis and treatment. She did not freak out and I think it will be beneficial to her in the long run to see that stuff happens to you and you deal with it. Also, she sees that people are still people even if they look different at times.
- My sister was a Godsend and I will be forever grateful to her for her love and support. My besties, Sandi and Becky, rallied around me and our friendship was strengthened.
- My church group members grew closer to each other as a result of praying for me, Pat and Jolie. They prayed us through the whole thing.
- I am grateful it happened to me and not my sister or others close to me because I feel I was equipped to handle it having had a few other medical scares before. I wasn’t working at the time, so there was no loss of income to my family as many others would have had.
- I am blessed with a deeper relationship with my Lord and Savior who was with me constantly.
- And finally, in an attempt to distract myself during chemotherapy, I joined a lovely blogger (Tania Stephens of 50 is Not Old) in selling Plunder Design jewelry. It gave me something else to think about, learn and work on. My friendship with Tania encouraged me to start my own blog and eventually join her as a business partner with the women-empowering Rodan+Fields.
As I worked on my list I had to make myself stop at 11 because I could have kept going thinking of other blessings encountered!
I have read that hard times are often blessings in disguise. The year it took to get me back to health was tough, but all the blessings sure helped.
If you find yourself in a valley and need some help climbing out, try reading The Magic and see if the gratitude practice helps you count your blessings.