Whenever there is a gathering of cancer survivors, there is a common bond. It goes beyond having had cancer. It is not something as explainable as that. And there are some people that don’t take their mental growth it to the next level. But many do. Many come out on the other side, once it is in remission, not quite the same. And those that continue to battle it, do not either.
I think the fear of death is lessened. Facing your mortality is something everyone experiences with a diagnosis of cancer. Looking at yourself in the mirror and realizing you have that C word is scary and early on, it is normal to question if the doctor is wrong and there is more of it in you. Will you survive the treatment? We all have heard of people that have died from the treatment and not from the cancer.
The questions, the what ifs cause an unending bundle of nerves and anxiety. The only way to gain some control is to let go of trying to control. What a paradox, having to let go when you want to control. Cancer teaches you that you don’t. You didn't pick the time of yourbirth and you won’t pick the time of your death. You can only choose the way that you live.
So you begin to evaluate the way you live. I think you gravitate towards survivors that have experienced what you have or people that share your sentiments, be positive with the life you have left. Negativity leads to sadness. Anxiety and stress leads to illness and immunity issues. Those lead to cancer and cancer kills. You learned that firsthand. Let God pick your time of death, not you. Poor lifestyle choices will make that time come much quicker.
One of the best places, I found, to surround myself with cancer survivors is Camp Bluebird sponsored by a local hospital, St. Thomas in Nashville, TN. When I attend it is like being back home at a family reunion or with an entire collection of best friends, diverse but as close as can be
Instantly, upon arriving and being greeted with hugs, there was that immediate connection. It is an unspeakable bond though most of the time our diagnosis is not discussed. You may wonder why and simply the reality is, because it doesn't need to be. None of us let our diagnosis define us as people.
We have lived through cancer, experienced it, we do not need to talk about it. Some there are still living with is, some may not survive it and some of us may get a re-occurrencebetween now and the time we return. Now is the time to rejoice in being together. We want to cherish each other. Living life, every moment as if it is the last and reinforce each other’s attitudes about life. We do this, energize each other because so many people in the world do not care to love unconditionally, will not listen to others non-judgmentally, will not hug for no reason or embrace unselfishly. We know this is needed;as Diana Ross sang “What the world needs now is love sweet love.”
Now, when I am outside or looking out a window and I see a bluebird suddenly appear, I smile. I think of all my dear friends at Camp Bluebird, of all we share and how we care. I then say a prayer thanking God for the treasure of each and every one of them. Link to Video from Camp By V. Gliatti
|Nurse Staff at Camp that volunteer for free at Camp|