I have this quote in my home that gives me a dose of hope every time I see it. It’s in our family room/kitchen area so it’s easy to see but also easy to miss, because it’s always there. It hangs on the wall, in a place I walk by a thousand times each day. Sometimes I find myself taking a moment in the day to look up, and there it is, a gentle reminder not to feel rushed.
I feel like this is helpful advice that applies to almost every area of my life. I am currently 4 years out from my cancer diagnosis and treatment. I often think about that time, when I was physically at my lowest. It was tough but time continued to march on. Each day presented a new challenge but I made it through and with time, I regained my physical strength. My body is not the same as “before cancer” but I am equally amazed at what the human body is capable of. To go so far down one road, becoming withered and weak and then be restored to health once again. How incredible is that?!
It’s not lost on me how fortunate I am. I realize that my experience may be different than others. For some, physical healing doesn’t come in the same way or maybe, even at all. Which causes me to think about growth and healing in other areas, like mental and emotional well-being.
If you speak with a handful of cancer patients who have finished active treatment, my guess is the majority of them will mention how much mental health plays a role throughout treatment but also post. It’s really hard to “go back” to life.
“Good things take time. Please don’t give up.”
This is where I need the reminder the most. About good things taking time. About not giving up. It’s disheartening to keep climbing, only to look back and feel like you haven’t come as far as you thought you had. I have been there – in that murky middle – mentally I can be really hard on myself. Add in anxiety and the fear of recurrence and just waking up can feel debilitating. If you’re in that space right now, I don’t have any profound words of wisdom to offer, but I can say that time will continue on and so you will. Keeping climbing toward those good things and one day you might just discover that, in a moment, you feel a little lighter than you did last year at this time. Or maybe you find that you don’t worry about the same thing that use to be ever present in your mind just a few months ago.
The growth itself is one of the good (best?) things. Hold on to even the smallest amount of growth and more will come. I am continually on the path, hopefully getting better each day but sometimes falling back too. I think that is normal and necessary even. To really master something, sometimes we have to revisit it again and again. Don’t you think? I would love to hear about your experience and thoughts on growth!