It’s not something I ever thought I’d be saying to my daughter at the age of 15.
It’s not something I’m even sure how to express.
But we have celebrated her cancerversary for the past three years and each year it means something different.
This week was Grace’s third cancerversary, and again we attempt to honour her journey through Leukemia.
Three years ago we moved into an altered state of existence and I feel like we are just beginning to wake up!
Just starting to live more fully again. Just starting to breathe more deeply.
To relax into the possibility that everything will be ok.
Still struggling with the disease. Still struggling with fear and the heartbreak of not knowing.
Chocolate cake to celebrate.
Grace and her brother Harry, had a taste and then beat it up – smashed it to pieces.
Wrestling with what was going on, with a dash of “We’ll beat this” thrown in.
Still struggling to reach a stable response.
Sad and fearful at times.
Not knowing when things would become “normal” again.
That year, we ate the cake!
A pensive moment beforehand.
At “Light it up Pink at Marble.”
A good way to support others fighting cancer.
Mostly a meaningful way to mark Grace’s journey at Year 3.
A moment of release.
Hopefully for good.
Some things we learned along the way:
Do the most important thing in front of you at the time.
That might just be putting one foot in front of the other.
Next, move the other foot.
Crisis instantly brings an opportunity for acceptance.
There’s always a choice.
Accepting the unacceptable is a gift you give yourself.
When things get really scary, take a breath and remember the big picture.
Basically there is only love.
Love each other.
Pour some more love into the situation.
The next time you find yourself faced with crisis, fear, anger, torment, and suffering.
Try not to push it away or keep it at bay.
Walk towards it.
Explore the fear.
Move deeply into it.
Sit beside the suffering.
As Pema Chodron said, “Right down there in the thick of things, we discover the love that will not die.”
Veronica Connors, B.Ed., M.Ed., CSLC
Author, Spiritual Life Coach, Self Mastery Teacher
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