Some friends of friends (that I call my friends) took the first 365 days of their marriage and have been traveling the world. From Southeast Asia to Patagonia and all these incredible places in-between they took off from their jobs and set out to explore the world. They have kept all of us informed through their blog where they take turns sharing of their incredible journey and sometimes exhausting uncomfortable days in the most unlikely of places. Each time they post I look forward to hearing of what their next adventure was…. but particulary this morning the post has touched me so. Her words read….
“Words can’t express how unimaginably thankful I am for this year. Among so many other things, it has given us time and space. To learn things we’ve always wanted to learn. To do things we’ve always wanted to do. The things that would have otherwise remained on the “someday I’ll..’ list.”
Her words brought tears to my eyes. I feel the same way… not because I traveled the world for a year but because my journey through breast cancer gave me so much of this same thoughts. It gave me time and space and made me ask myself, what have I always wanted to do? Amongst these things breast cancer showed me how precious it all is and exposed me to the very depth of sorrow. It brought me to the very deepest brokenness that I never knew one could feel and still have a heart beat. It has given me a perspective some would say… but if you ask me it has given me immense gratitude for what it means to be alive.
I am now two years and two months cancer free and in my constant wrestling with what should I do next and where should I spend my time, occasionally I come back to the place of asking myself…. who am I? What makes me me. What makes me feel alive? What gives me joy? Do you ever ask yourself that? What truly gives you life? What do you really love? Not in the artificial or you are expected to love that sort of thing way, but what do YOU really love?
Unfortunately this is harder than it looks to do because just as we seem to get the answers to these questions the pressure of society and the expectations we set on ourselves come crashing over us… So I again go back to this place of asking the questions over again or as Mary Oliver says, “What will you do with your one wild and precious life?”
For me this has become the theme of the past few months… I began dedicating time to teaching Sunday School. I have always loved kids so I thought to myself why not start on Sunday mornings. Next I began babysitting. Not because I need the money necessarily but because it has been a gift. It has been life giving to have the opportunity to pour into kids lives, make them feel special and give the parents an evening away. I then decided to invite my breast cancer group and coworkers to join me at the Denver Rescue Mission so we can serve men and women a warm meal. This has been a different kind of rewarding that one must experience to understand and lastly my “Someday I’ll” brought me to my road bike and California. I have always wanted to ride my road bike on the coast of California… so this October I will ride 200 miles to raise money for the Young Survivor Coalition. I am riding for all of the women who can no longer ride. I will ride for my dear friend Amy who showed me how to battle breast cancer and fight to the very end. I will ride for all of those who had a “Someday I’ll” list and never got to do those things.
So McKenzie and Brad while you travel the world I want to say thank you… for reminding me that we are meant to take the time and the space to do the very things that have been implanted on our hearts. It is so often so easy to forget…
So what is on your “Someday I’ll” list that you have been waiting to do….
Please consider supporting me in my bike ride this October. Due to the generosity of SO MANY of you I am only $75.00 to my goal of $2500.00. I have now decided that by October I will try and double this amount. Thank you all for your support.
Each year, more approximately 12,150 women under age 40 are diagnosed with breast cancer. That’s a small number compared with the estimated 246,600 diagnoses this year in women of all ages, but the disease is typically more aggressive and more likely to metastasize in younger patients. The Young Survivor Coalition works with survivors, caregivers and medical, research, advocacy and legislative communities to increase the quality and quantity of life for women ages 40 and under who are diagnosed with breast cancer. The money raised in Tour de Pink rides helps educate, empower, and connect more than 250,000 women living in the U.S. today who were diagnosed with breast cancer.
You may click to donate below! Thank you!