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Making "Friends" With Cancer


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Making Friends with Cancer

by Dawn Nelson

A few weeks ago, after I was diagnosed with cancer, I made a desicion. all the images I heard about fighting cancer, doing battle with cancer, beating it and conquering it, did not really resonate with me. Thought I was committed to doing whatever was necessary to regaining my health, I felt the need to find more positive ways of viewing my situation and to support my healing process. It ws not okay with me for the lingering cancer cells to stay in my body and I began taking steps t get them out. Yet it did not seem useful to me to see my cancer as an enemy. I wanted to learn all that I could from it and, for me, that meant finding some way to make friends with my cancer. This is the way I found:

You make friends with cancer by heeding its call to consciousness, by letting it change your life. You slow down. You pay attention. You stop doing things you don't really want or need to do. You prioritize. You pace yourself. You respect your body. You spend time with those whose presence is healing.

You make friends with cancer by noticing the small miracles that occur daily--the chorus of bird songs in the morning air, the intoxicating fragrance of one pink rose, the melody of raindrops, the heart melting sweetness of your children's smiles, the eternality of an ocean wavy, the exquisite beauty of a setting sun, the presence of your beloved--which, before cancer, you may have overlooked or been to "busy" to enjoy or appreciate.

You make friends with cancer by letting love in. You open you heart. You tell the truth. You ask for help. You accept the profound generosity of friends. You let whatever you may have given return itself to you.

You make friends with cancer by allowing it to remind you of what is actually important in life and what is less so, by forging a relationship with it that fosters new insight, by seeing the uninvited guest as an opportunity for learning and growth.

You make friends with cancer by accepting the myriad gifts and joys which life offers. You don't waste time complaining about thins you cannot change or which you wish were different. You dance when you can, you weep when you must. You notice what you have instead of what you don't have. You practice thankfulness, and forgiveness.

You make friends with cancer by not hiding from it or hating it, but by acknowledging it, accepting what it has to teach you and continuing on your Journey, one step at a time.

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