Friday, September 28, 2007

October Issue of SHAPE Magazine

A couple of posts ago I mentioned being interviewed for the October issue of Shape magazine. I am so very excited and honored to have been included that I had to post my quote from the article! They did a great section dedicated just to breast cancer with very helpful and inspiring information. The title of the article I am in is “The Best Breast Cancer Advice I Ever Got” written by Ginny Graves who I had the pleasure of speaking with back in April. If you haven’t picked up a copy yet grab one…..its a really good issue! Aside from being tickled pink that I am only a couple of pages away from Jaclyn Smith, I smiled when I saw Karen Lynch, writer and fellow blogger in the article as well! Hope you guys pick it up!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Butter On the Side

I often wonder about all the negativity I see in people out there in the world. All of the unhappy faces. I wonder what it is that makes them so miserable. Is it an unhappy marriage they are stuck in, or abuse at home, an illness, or a devastating loss they suffered? I can’t help but wonder if maybe it isn’t any of those things. But then I think, if not, what could it be?

Case in point….today my husband and I went to our local Dunkin Donuts for a cup of Joe. When I was on line ordering our coffee and bagels I noticed a woman next to me placing her order. She specifically asked for butter “on the side”. She looked as if she had a fire under her butt and was very ansy to get out of there with her beloved bagel. I sat down and enjoyed my bagel and coffee and conversation with my hubby when after about 20 minutes that same woman came barging through the door and beelined directly for the counter where the preparation station was. She looked as if she was ready to bust some heads! As I looked at her and wondered what bug could be up her a** she was flinging her butter soaked bag in the face of some teenager bitching about how appalled she was that she just left there only to find out that her bagel was buttered when she specifically requested butter on the side. I watched her tapping her feet and glaring at this girl as if it was a life and death mistake that had just occurred. I wondered what could possibly have caused her to be such a bi*** about something like that. As if the extra butter was the worst thing that could have happened to her.

I probably would feel differently if she had been nicer about it and somewhat polite. I wonder if all the things that I have suffered through made me more tolerant and less negative. Then on the other side of the coin I suppose all I have been through could have made me like her. Made me get crazy over not getting my butter “on the side”. Although I do understand that we all have our bad days, we all get up on the wrong side of the bed sometimes but does it give us the right to take our frustrations out on innocent bystanders?

I wonder if we each have the potential to go either way when we finally dig ourselves out of immense stress whatever the kind. What do you think??

Monday, September 17, 2007

Land of the Living

I was interviewed a few months back for an article that SHAPE magazine was working on for their breast cancer issue in October. The article is about words of advice from breast cancer survivors meant to inspire others currently in the trenches. I think it is a great idea because only someone who has been down in the pit where you have been will know just how difficult it can be and how hard it is to come up out again to see the light of day.

My advice was to not be afraid to date during breast cancer treatment. I am often asked why I continued to date during my mastectomy and chemo. I have to admit that I still pose that question to myself sometimes! More so in the frame of “What the hell were you thinking?!” And for a while I truly couldn’t answer that question when someone asked me back then in the thick of it. Now 6 years later looking back I realized that I did it to hold on to what felt “normal”. It was my attempt at feeling like a normal young, single woman. It was my attempt at holding on to my place in the land of the living. I had already given up so dam much to cancer … breast, my hair, and quite possibly my life that I was angry it was threatening to take away so much like doing the things that I found exciting and fun. Although I was feeling pretty low about myself at times I still kept putting myself out there. I continued to work as long as I felt ok, went out with my friends, and continued to look for love online. Even though cancer and its treatments were wrecking my body, my mind and more importantly my soul were still the same. Maybe that is what helped to keep me going. Going and doing as much as I could. I figured what did I have to loose? Cancer already threatened to take away my life, so anything else seemed alot less scary.

I think it is so important to keep doing the things that make you feel like you are still alive. That make you feel that you are still living life especially when going through something as frightening as the big “C”. Being a young adult going through it can be so isolating in itself since we tend to be the forgotten ones!

Think about what it is that makes you feel good, that makes you feel connected to yourself as well as the outside world. There can be comfort in the norm, comfort in routine. Embrace those things and look outside the box to find new things to focus on. During my treatments I found that some new hobbies I had discovered before I was diagnosed like photography and reading became a way for me to cope but more importantly a way for me to feel alive. (And of course there was always the standby…..retail therapy, which on some days came in handy. Cause you know, what girl doesn’t need a new pair of shoes?!)

What are some things that make you feel like you? What are some things that you do to keep your feet firmly planted in the land of the living?

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Life In Fast Forward

I don’t recall just when this began to bother me or what exact time of year it makes me more crazy. Maybe it is when the summer is coming to an end and fall is just around the corner or rather my least favorite season, winter. Maybe because I am more of a spring into summer girl loving the time of year when the days are getting warmer and longer.

I noticed it about a month ago. My husband and I were in our local grocery store and I stopped dead in my tracks. Out of the corner of my eye I thought I saw bags of candy corn on the store shelf. As my head nearly spun in a 360 I saw the entire display of HALLOWEEN CANDY! Before my husband could stop me I quickly grabbed a bag of the candy corn and tossed it angrily down to the floor. My husband laughed knowing that this usually happens with the changing of holidays and seasons. I can no longer control my rage over how people are riding on the fast forward button. Good thing he wasnt with me when I saw Christmas ornaments in the Hallmark store the other day! I had to do a double take and then run and find a dam calendar to remind myself it was still the beginning of September, a whole 4 months till Christmas!!

I think my rage may have gotten worse after going through cancer. When faced with death was when I finally realized it may be time to stop and smell the roses. (which I still have a hard time doing!) I don’t understand why people are in such a rush. A rush to get to the next big thing. The next holiday, the next day, the next month and the next birthday (well, maybe that depends on your age). What is it that makes us that way? Is it that we just don’t appreciate what is right in front of us that we keep speeding forward to find something better? Is it only when u are truly happy with yourself that you are able to finally put the brakes on? That you are finally able to hit the stop button?

Its something to think about. We all need to hit that stop button, or at least hit pause sometimes…..before someone or rather something does it for us……