I have lots of people telling me what a ‘strong person’ I am, yet I don’t recognise this trait in myself. I don’t see getting through this difficult period of dealing with cancer and chemotherapy as me being strong, more of just ‘gotta keep going’. I’m dealing with challenges (and there are lots of them) that come my way, a week at a time.
According to the Oxford Dictionary one of the definitions of strength is:
“The emotional or mental qualities necessary in dealing with difficult or distressing situations”
I’ve always had a positive outlook and I think that definitely helps me to get my head around cancer. Also I’m a firm believer that things ‘happen for a reason’ and whilst I’m still trying to understand how cancer chose me, I flip this into a positive and think “well let’s do something positive out of this situation.” And boy I intend too!
Having a good sense of humour and not taking situations too seriously at times also helps – it’s like those “I’m going to laugh or cry” kind of moments. You’ve got to lighten the mood sometimes or it all gets a bit overwhelming.
Where I find a lot of my strength is the love and support from my family and friends. Never underestimate how people who are close to you can lift your spirits. What makes me get up in the morning when I feel horrendous? What gets me through every chemo session? Answer; my family and friends.
I’ve also learnt to understand there are challenges in life that come by that our out of our control and cancer is one of them. I can’t control whether cancer will rear it’s ugly head again and return. Whilst it’s always in there in the distance, if it comes back then that’s something I will deal with. What I can control is keeping myself as healthy as possible, looking after myself and most importantly getting myself through 12 cycles of chemo. This is challenge in itself I might add!!
Finally, I am a very determined and resilient person, I never give up on any challenge that comes my way. When situations knock me down, I pick myself up, dust myself off and carry on. I was absolutely devastated the day I was diagnosed with cancer, it was the worst day of my life yet I will not let it beat me, this is the greatest fight of my life and I’m determined that nothing is going to stop me getting myself through the next 6 sessions of chemo.
Does this make me strong? Who knows but the storm is gonna last for a good few months yet but it will pass and when it does – this is my plan …………