Thirteen years ago today, I got the news that I had melanoma. Anyone who has been dealt the cancer card knows that your world comes to a grinding halt while your mind races with a thousand thoughts. Those problems at work or being upset with someone disappear immediately. The past, the present, the future – will I be here to enjoy it with family and friends? What’s next? If only? What if?
I was lucky. While the cancer was a “level three” and they removed three lymph nodes, they got it in surgery and I didn’t need chemo or radiation. I was lucky. Friends and family who have gotten cancer have endured chemo, radiation, procedures, drugs, chronic pain and more. I am inspired by each one of them every day.
In the beginning, the reality forces you to take a hard look at what you are doing with your life and question is it worthy of your mind, heart and soul. The answers to the questions often lead to good life changes.
So each year, I celebrate and remember with gratitude and a renewed sense of urgency to not live life so urgently. To stop over complicating, to love more and to appreciate the blessings that surround me right now. I was lucky. I am lucky. Lucky 13, indeed.
It sounds to me like luck had something to do with your recovery and life change, but attitude had more. You made a choice. You decided to be positive, to celebrate, and to love. And now you get to change others by your experience. What a great thing!
It is amazing what people have to go through with cancer- you were very lucky- thanks for the reminder.
Yes you were very lucky. Cancer is so scary! Have a great weekend. 🙂
I’ve been having conversations about similar things with friends and colleagues… as I get older, I’m becoming more aware of how short life really is and how you really could *go* at any time. I’ve had school friends suddenly die without warning, family die and so forth… it’s such an odd feeling when you begin to really think that though you may feel you’ll live until old age, you might not.
It’s always good to remember what is important in life and what it is we ‘truly’ want from it. Thank you for sharing your experience.
Kathie, you and your blog inspire me! Happy Lucky 13!
Thanks for sharing your thankfulness for life! You are a blessing! We are lucky to have you here on earth with us.
Do something fun to celebrate you!
Never Give Up!
Joan Y. Edwards
Katie: three degrees of separation: One-my son had melanoma ten years ago, he’s healthy now, but it was the scariest time of my life; and one of my closest friends is battling it right now. Two-my goofy golden retriever Bella (if I could, I’d attach a picture, she is hysterical). Three-I will run my thirteenth marathon this November. Stay well, and congrats on overcoming.
The more I share with people through this blog, the more I am convinced how connected we all are – trying to do our best, living a good life and enjoying the journey – even the hard parts that give us a new appreciation for the many blessings we have every day.