What’s Empowering About Cancer? You’ll be Surprised.

Now I know that if I can do cancer I can do anything. But on that dark day when “you have cancer” came out of my doctor’s mouth, I felt anything but empowered. I didn’t think I could handle the surgeries and chemo, physically or mentally. Wasn’t sure I even wanted to try. I didn’t feel empowered while I was going through treatment. But when it ended I was amazed by what I had done.

It WAS empowering to make it through nine surgeries and four rounds of chemo. To laugh about my GI Jane haircut. To remember my “Three tries and you’re done” rule for needle sticks. Who knew?

I might have been sick and bald, but as long as I could choose to laugh and refuse to be poked, I didn’t feel like a victim. This little bit of control was enough to keep me sane. It was a valuable lesson that carried forward into my healing and my new  normal life.

What about you? How many things have you done because of cancer that you never would have dreamed you could? What are you proud of yourself for accomplishing? What did you do that surprised you? How does it feel?

I believe the essence of empowerment comes from feeling the fear of not knowing how something will turn out, and doing it anyway. You may not realize it, but you’ve become an expert at doing it anyway during cancer.

 The experience facing your own mortality may have shaken the foundation of who you are. Pieces of your old life may not fit anymore. Your priorities may be different now. Dreams and goals more urgent.

Your shaken foundation has also created an unexpected opportunity. Now you have the chance to bring more of what matters most to you into your life. If you could wipe the slate clean and have it all; what would you want? Give yourself permission to think about this without worrying about how it could happen. Millions of survivors report that their lives as survivors are more passionate, fulfilling and joyful than before.  

Like me, they feel that nothing is scarier than cancer. They’ve learned to use fear as a spring-board to move out of their comfort zone and into that fully alive, I CAN DO IT feeling. You can too.

Leave a comment about what you’ve done that you never believed you could because of cancer below and inspire others with your courage.  

Learn more about the empowering aspects of cancer at my If I Can Do Cancer I Can Do Anything FREE Telecall. Join me, award-winning author Paula Holland De Long ACC, CPCC, for this inspiring discussion of how you can use the courage and inspiration cancer creates to get more of what you want from life. All participants receive a free learning guide.

Tues. February 28th from 8-9 pm EST / 7 CST / 5 PST

 Register Here for FREE Telecall! 


One thought on “What’s Empowering About Cancer? You’ll be Surprised.

  1. A recovering “cancer survivor and thiver” friend of mine, was recently mocked by his ex because of his apparent aging, summing up her comment with, “just saying”. My friend had then just finished a rigorous chemotherapy and radiation treatment only three years earlier which left him still painfully underweight and suffering from post-secondary scarring. Her comment had been in response to something he had shared via Facebook, which was that he had enjoyed a nice outing with his young child but that someone had asked him if he was the child’s grandfather. My friend and I talked about how he felt about the ex’s comment and after a while he said he flat out did not like it, that it bothered him and that it made him feel ugly. Hip-hooray for expressing himself! Sometimes people who fall to cancer are the type who keep feelings bottled up to the point of becoming gravely ill. After some more talk about why the ex’s comment bugged him, he wrote his own comment in response which was dignified and self-supporting. And I am very happy to say that his friends wrote very supportive and loving responses too!
    “I am a cancer survivor. Before chemo- radiation treatment, I looked young for my age. Not anymore. I look old, sometimes I feel old. I went through something I would never wish on my worst enemy. But everyday I’m getting stronger and feel more connected to the world and to my loved ones and the things I love to do. People who truly know me and know what I’ve been through tell me that I look great.”

    I am so happy to say that instead of stuffing his feelings, he is learning to constructively express them and is beginning to stand up for himself in very, very self-empowered ways. That certainly is lemonade from lemons!!!!!

    All the best, thanks for the articles.


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