Saturday, August 30, 2014
Day 50 of 100 Days of Good Karma.
Amazing that it’s been 50 days since my world was turned upside down.
More amazing is how my perspective has shifted since the first doctor dropped the word ‘cancer’ into my lap.
It took some time, but I finally accepted no one was going call and say there’d been a mix up. There wasn’t going to be an ‘oops, the doctor read the wrong charts, so sorry for the inconvenience’.
I could suddenly reduce everything that was important to me to just a handful of things. Funny though, none of those ‘things’ were things.
They were people.
They were my family and friends who cried along next to me.
They were my children, my heart and soul embodied in two little people too young to understand what ‘cancer’ was or how it could touch their lives.
My priorities shifted.
My tolerance for bullshit, which was pretty much zero to begin with, dropped into the negative numbers. I don’t have time for drama.
Want to know a secret? Neither do you.
My perspective changed.
Whenever anyone asks, “How are you doing?”
My first thought is, “It could be worse.” Because it could.
I don’t have ALS. I don’t have Multiple Sclerosis. I don’t have Muscular Dystrophy. I’m not a quadriplegic who operates a wheel chair with his tongue and needs a respirator to mechanically breathe for me.
I have cancer.
If you’ll excuse my on-going Michael J. Fox crush, he wrote, “The only unavailable choice was whether or not to have Parkinson’s. Everything else was up to me.”
My only unavailable choice is whether or not to have cancer. How I choose to respond is entirely up to me.
And if a man who has lived with the increasingly debilitating symptoms of Parkinson’s disease for more than twenty years can find optimism, then I can too.
I don’t think I’ll ever look at cancer as a gift, but it does come with consolation prizes.
It comes with (are you ready for it?) Silver Linings.
Today’s silver lining: Cancer showed me that perspective is a choice.
And I choose to look for joy in each and every moment I can.
What’s your silver lining today? I love comments!