I am technically NED, No Evidence of Disease. I guess they don’t say remission or cancer free anymore. They don’t really know for sure, so we have to be comforted with the fact that there is no evidence of this ugly disease at this time. The truth is there is cancer in every one of us. It just surfaces in different ways.
I know from my cancer that a healthy diet, exercise and low stress are essential for maintaining health. Yours too? Wow. Guess I’m not so alone. What are you doing to keep yourself in that NED stage? How are you enjoying life today?
I was reading recently about all the time we spend just “doing”. We keep busy with so many ridiculous things sometimes. Before my diagnosis I had no idea how to get rid of some of this excess that did not need tending to. Now that I have some time and space away from my cancer being the #1 challenge in my life, I have taken on many of my old responsibilities. I am dangerously close to over scheduling. Finding it hard to breathe on rare occasions. Not most days anymore, but occasionally. I am now armed with the awareness of the road I am headed down. I created a visual schedule of my week so that I can start simplifying it. I know that in order to keep up with what I currently have scheduled, I will be sacrificing some of the most basic needs for assuring that today my life is healthy (tomorrow is never guaranteed). I can now look at my schedule and make those adjustments that I agonized over before thinking that I could and should do everything possible for my family. Today I know that if that means I don’t have time to exercise, eat well and unwind on most days, then the other things are just not worth doing. Meditation also helps me in the process. It calms my brain and creates the space for me to step back and observe. It reduces the clutter in my brain and needs as much attention as the piles of paper I sift through every day. It is also the result of my new mantra “More Discipline, Easier Life”.
Same goes for craft supplies and books and clothes and whatever else was keeping me from having peace in my heart. This may seem like an odd side effect of a cancer diagnosis, but I swear once nothing else mattered but finding time to enjoy my family, it was so much easier to get rid of things. What did it matter if I had this or that project to do with my sons if that project took more time away from us? If I spent more time moving that project around and finding a place to store it and dusting it off from time to time in hopes of sitting down to work on it, etc. It was actually robbing us and not adding to our quality time. I now look at what comes into my house, a little more cynically maybe, but I look at it and say what are the odds? Or is this worth being spread thin for? Is this going to really add to our days or is spending 10 minutes talking to each other going to add more? This is the logic I use to clean out my closets. This is the logic I use to weed out toys. This is the logic that seemed so clear the minute I was faced with my own mortality. I still have plenty of “stuff”, but I am releasing my need for stuff in exchange for my need for joy. I am choosing time with nothing to do but be carefree! Care to join me?
I hope this resonates with you and you can keep whatever is eating at your joy and feeding your cancer, at bay. Live for today and remember it’s a journey and not a race.
With Love, Tosha