“Being diagnosed with breast cancer and being given the opportunity to survive provides each of us with the chance to step back and assess how we are spending our time and begin to look more closely as to whether what we are doing is really contributing to this world in a positive way.
We are in touch with our mortality ahead of schedule and begin to realize that life is more precious than we recognized or conceived and needs to be valued and not taken for granted. Relationships take on a different tone, some perhaps ending and others becoming more meaningful.”
Darn! I wish I had said that. Although these are not my words, they certainly resonate very strongly with me. People expect that when you get cancer you suddenly get great insights in to life. Well, they are right. When I am asked about my great insights, I have only one: The only thing that really matters in life is people. You already knew that, right? Yeah, so did I, intellectually. But knowing it, and really believing it are two different things. And cancer has the perk of allowing you to really believe and feel the truth of that statement.
Like Lilly Shockney, cancer made me re-evaluate the relationships in my life. I ended some, and gave more of my energy to others. On that note, I would like to pay tribute to my wonderful friends, those people who are truly deserving of my time and energy. I have been blessed from a very young age with meaningful friendships. Lily, Winnie, and Denise saw me through my childhood and teen years. While our lives have gone in different directions, there is a bond between us that time can never break. Then there are the friends who were with me for a season of my life, Sandy, Carol Anne (with an “e”) and Anita, just to name a few. Finally, there are my soldiers. These friends have been in the trenches with me for more than a decade, and when the going gets tough, it is these phenomenal women that I first turn to. They have cried with me, laughed with me, and drank wine with me through divorce, new relationships, break ups, Ben’s diagnosis of autism, and now the Big C. I can depend on them for anything. I thank God for this wonderful gift of friendship, and I thank these friends for sharing my life, the good, the bad and the ugly. I love you guys!
Tip: When you are battling cancer, your time and energy become more precious to you. Don’t waste it on toxic relationships, instead nurture those relationships which allow you to be your best self.