If you’ve been following along here for the past few years you will know that 3 years ago I made the big decision to move to New York from Sydney Australia after going through a year of breast cancer bullshit. I was fortunate enough to work for an incredibly supportive and global business who facilitated the move and I am eternally grateful.
But life in NY has not been all smooth sailing. In fact, it’s been filled with highs and lows. And the lows have been real lows. Life changing, devestating, scary lows.
The first and most awful was losing my beautiful friend and simply amazing human being Nicole Frances Wilson to breast cancer. We moved to NY together, lived together, travelled together. More importantly we handled breast cancer together. Until she didn’t get to anymore.
Less than a year later, I found a lump which was first diagnosed as a secondary / metestatic spread, or if not a large sarcoma in my right femur. I spent a week thinking that it was time to start preparing for a life wind down. Thankfully, the initial diagnosis was wrong. I don’t have cancer, I do have a desmoid tumor. Which is a fairly similar condition…..still treated by oncologists, chemotherapy, surgery, radiation. Not quite the cause for celebration I initially thought, but a lot better than the alternative.
But, good news – today I am not writing about life’s struggles. We all have them. And despite them, we move forward. If we’re lucky, we find increased clarity and meaning as a result. We don’t necessarily get over what we’ve lost – be it a person or confidence. But we can learn to focus on the good in life on a day by day basis. At least that is my experience.
I have been living this more intensely than ever before in the time since discovering I have a desmoid tumor. My second cancer diagnosis (or close enough to it) sent me looking internally for how I could take more control of my health. And it awakened in me an enormous passion for holistic health. I have always been interested in food and nutrition, but this has taken matters to a much larger level. Before I knew it I found myself signing up for a year long health coaching course and launching a new instagram page that is the seeds I’m sewing towards reinventing myself. (it’s called embracethegoodstuff).
The reason I am writing this down here is because you all know me intimately and I want your support and guidance. I am dreaming up a new life and my head is spinning with ideas. Some of which are squarely focussed on healing after cancer treatment. You read that right – not during treatment, but in those awful days when chemotherapy is over and life is back to normal. But it’s not.
I got to thinking that it’s not only cancer that impacts us in this way. There are countless moments and events in life where we go through the worst, and our friends and family stand firm and strong by our side, seeing safely to the other side. And then they get to a point where they assume you are AOK and go back to their business. This is normal, but it’s not easy. And we all know that healing isn’t linear.
So what am I dreaming up? Here’s a few ideas I’m tossing around….Am I on to something?
- I want to write a book about healing after trauma. A step by guide based on my own experience of how to try and embrace (and amplify) the good things in life and simply cope with the bad. It would be in three parts in the introduction – lessons learned through breast cancer, grief and thinking life is over. Then move into actionable steps to take to cope and to heal as you learn to enjoy your new normal
- With that behind me, I want to build a website and brand that brings it to life in a more ongoing fashion. A place for finding joy after trauma.
- And if that’s a success become a public speaker focussed on holistic health
- Finally, to launch a physical studio of sorts. Something that’s beyond a gym and more about finding happiness every day. Yes there will be yoga and running (because I love both) but also nutrition, cooking lessons, health coaching and motivational course work.
I’m not in a hurry to do all of this. But I’m enjoying unleashing my creativity and dreaming up a different sort of life. This year is about just that. Then it’s going to be time to take some more real world style action.
Meanwhile, the thought of all of these ideas is terrifying and exciting in equal measure. But as we all know, life is nothing without living beyond your wildest dreams. So that’s what I intend to do.