16 Weeks…

This post is in honor of my sister-in-law, whose life was far too short, and stolen from us by the thief called cancer.

My sister-in-law just passed. She was 53 years old. Her name was Cheryl.

She had been going to her doctor for the last six years complaining about being in pain and feeling uncomfortable. She was told she had fibromyalgia, given prescriptions, sent to specialists and still no solution.

– 16 weeks ago, she was diagnosed with cancer in her lungs, liver and throughout her body.

– 16 weeks ago she was given a death sentence.

– 16 weeks ago she was put on chemotherapy. We don’t know why, as it was far too late for a cure.

– 17 weeks ago she was planning her retirement in the next few years.

– 17 weeks ago she had just celebrated 26 years of marriage to my brother.

– 17 weeks ago her whole life was in front of her.

– 16 weeks ago our family faced the hardest news of our lives.

We don’t know why it took all this time for her doctors to finally order some basic tests. Like a simple chest x-ray. She was a smoker, wouldn’t that be a standard thing?

She had a primary care doctor, she had specialists. But her care wasn’t coordinated and it seems she sunk in an ocean of patients clamoring for a doctor’s attention. Her symptoms didn’t stand out among the massive patient load of her well-meaning care team.

She did everything the doctors told her to do for six years. And when they finally did the tests she needed, they found her riddled with cancer. And then the countdown started.

– 16 weeks of living in a swirl of disbelief, anger, sorrow, fear and pain. And her pain kept getting worse.

– 16 weeks of seeing all your plans for the future thrown out the window in a crumpled pile of unfulfilled dreams.

– 16 weeks to prepare to face the end.

Continue reading “16 Weeks…”

The Pursuit of Positivity

“We become what we think about”

Emily Nightingale

Reality Check…

Let’s face it, we are swimming daily in a sea of negativity.

From the 24-hour news cycles; to our social media feeds and to the voice in our head, it creates a drain on our ability to feel joy, be creative and can impact our mental health.

Constant negativity fuels anxiety, depression and many other not so great things. It also becomes a pattern, where you are getting fixated on thinking about worse case situations and when anything difficult emerges, no matter how small, you tie it to “see that is what I was talking about”, which reinforces our negative self-talk,

This creates an environment of a “self-fulfilling prophesy” where the things your speaking into existence are not reinforcing your potential but succumbing to believing the limits you have put on yourself by listening to others’ negativity.

Continue reading “The Pursuit of Positivity”

Timeless lessons through the years… a few nuggets that stand out

“Pride deafens us to the advice or warnings of those around us.”

John C. Maxwell

It’s a wonder, that when we are young, we toss aside all the great advice we get, in favor of our own inexperience, only to reflect years and years later, the advice was really useful and came from a place of caring. As humans, we inherently choose the path of hands on learning through experience.

It is the arc of life, to be fearless, invincible, all knowing at the start; refraining and reflective in the middle; to waking up to the brilliance of that early advice and accepting its truth as we slide into the later years in life.

Continue reading “Timeless lessons through the years… a few nuggets that stand out”

Setting Your Boundaries … a Bold Frontier

“Daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves, even when we risk disappointing others.”

Brene Brown

Work-a-holic….

It has always been hard for me to set boundaries on my time. I put myself last, I sign up for more than I can do, stress myself with deadlines and go full out on my goals.

Being a work-a-holic always felt comfortable. It made me feel useful and engaged. Being busy allowed me to not think too much about anything else. Strive, strive, strive.

My mum tells the story that I have always been this way. The first thing I did when I could stand and hold the playpen side, was to pick up a broom in my other hand and sweep all day. She said that if I wasn’t sweeping, I was doing some other thing that was working towards something. Since I hadn’t started to talk yet, she had no idea what I was thinking. But my playpen was swept clean 😂 and I was being useful.

Continue reading “Setting Your Boundaries … a Bold Frontier”

Learning to Love, the Gift from my Grandfathers

“On behalf of every man, looking out for every girl, you are the God and the weight of her world”

John Meyer – Daughters

This week I am writing for the important men, who are raising strong, independent capable women. To get to #equity, we have to celebrate what both genders bring to the table, and it starts by raising our next generation.

This post is both a celebration, and thanksgiving to them, through the stories of my three amazing grandfathers. Who, without them, I would not have learned how to be loved and how to be authentically me.

For all you dads and grandads, you are vitally important to your girls and equally important in raising your boys, who need equal strength and heart.

Please like, share and comment with your thoughts and perhaps stories. Spread the word and help me grow this blog. My aspiration is to make a positive impact, in this all too negative world.

Thank you all for continuing this journey with me…now onto the story..

Filling the gap…

My dad left when I was 7 months in the making. Leaving my mum with a toddler, a baby on the way and a bunch of unpaid bills. This sounds a bit like the making of a Dickens novel, especially given we were in London at the time, and scraping by.

To further the “Dickenesque” backdrop, mum was working full time, trying to hide her pregnancy, and worked up until a week before I came along. This was against protocol and I think the law at the time 🤦‍♀️, however, she had to pay the bills. Although this is not a Dickens tale, it does have some of the elements of the heartache, and the joy, his stories are so well known for.

This week is in celebration of my three grandfathers that filled the void left by my dad. They taught me courage, bravery, resilience, love, independence and a host of other magnificent things.

Each were different, and yet the same when it came to their capacity for loving fiercely when needed, strength when required and a listening ear when I had what seemed like unending tears.

Continue reading “Learning to Love, the Gift from my Grandfathers”
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