Thursday, August 1, 2013

In Perspective

I attended a retreat in Park City about 6 weeks ago for women who have breast cancer. The 8 women spent most of our time (2 days) talking about ourselves, meditating, talking about moving forward, and receiving massages and facials and delicious meals, during this time. The goal of this retreat was to pamper us and send us home refreshed, relaxed, reinvigorated. And it did. I came home with some answers to some of my reflections, and a little anxiety.

The anxiety, as I've expressed before, is the "What do I do with what this experience?" And - how soon, where, when, with whom.

July has been quite the month for me as I've tried to "be" and heal while also trying to figure out my next steps in life's journey.

Last weekend I had the opportunity to attend a training in Philadelphia. The training was for 22 cancer survivors/thrivers, hand-picked, who will assist on a helpline for women (and their families) who have breast cancer. Living Beyond Breast Cancer's (LBBC), mission statement is:  LBBC empowers all women affected by breast cancer to live as long as possible with the best quality of life."

The 22 of us were pampered, dined, taught, and validated. All of the women had to be in the recovery mode, not still in treatment, and we have committed to 2 years of service. The training was phenomenal, given by a woman who is a survivor and  a top-notch trainer. We learned the in's and out's of a helpline, how to listen, and how to offer care and knowledge, and how to support those who call. My first opportunity at the helpline will be Aug. 6. I'm looking forward to it.

As much as I loved the Park City retreat, this LBBC training got me out of myself - giving me the opportunity to share what I've learned, get my story away from me and let my experiences silently help others.

Nice to be getting outside of me. Time to get outside of me. Yeah, time to draw from my experiences, while I'm still healing, and begin to help others heal. Feels good.

 Me and my roommate/quickly-turned-friend, Sherri (4yrs metastatic bc), exploring Phil.

Taking some time off this month - a vacation, getting syllabus for 2 UVU classes prepared (hallelujah, I am so excited to get back in the classroom), enjoying my days.

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