I am always surprised when I read a post on Facebook that complains about a common colloquialism like “cancer is a journey” or “my fight against cancer” or anything similar to that. I’ll tell you why. To me, everyone has their own path to walk. Some people see cancer as a fight while others see it as a journey. Some think that it was “meant to be” and some think that they have been punished by God or the devil and some think it’s just bad luck or genetics. I always felt that we need to allow people to be themselves and see it their own way. After all, everyone is different. I try to accept people for who they are. I don’t always agree, and I will give my opinion if I am asked but, I like to let people be themselves. 😀 Any how, now it’s my turn. This is how I see my life with cancer.
It’s true. I’m a really happy person. Annoyingly so. 🙂 Here’s my recent history. In just the past few years both my wife and I lost our jobs, almost lost our home, I started a new job and found out that I had cancer. Yes, and to be honest, there’s worse stuff that I didn’t tell ya! Still, I’m happy. No, I haven’t been consistently happy for that entire time. It was very difficult going through those things and I still have cancer but I have a lovely wife, beautiful son and I’m alive and not dead. 😀 I know….low standards, right…. OK, but think about this. Really, in the end, that’s all any of us have. We have our family, some friends, our life and a few possessions that are temporary. In the end, we give it all back. If I’m blessed enough to get more well, then hooray! Still, in the back of my mind, I know that this stuff is just temporary. So, the things that make me happy are less ephemeral. Here’s a quote from the New Testament that puts things in perspective for me.
…yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. The New Testament Book of James Chapter 4 verses 14
Even the most healthy among us get only a hundred or so years. Think about it. How quickly mist evaporates in the morning. How true is that?! So, for me, I don’t care about material things as much as I care about people. I try to invest in my family, friends and things that last. 😀
I’m Spiritual, Not Religious
You know, there is such a difference. So many people think that if you have faith, especially in the God of the bible, that you are a dogmatic hypocrite and want to force everyone to be a clone of yourself…or another religious leader. I know that there are some people like that but, that’s just not me! 🙂 I am spiritual and not religious. To be honest, I have always have been like this. I explored a lot of things before coming to my faith including existentialism, some eastern philosophies and principles, agnosticism, atheism… I even made up my own thing for awhile 🙂 In the end, following Jesus is what gave me inner peace and now, in my cancer, battle it gives me hope. I always think of the song, “He’s got the whole world in His hands”. To me, that about sums it up. God will take care of me. Spiritual, not religious. It’s not about rules it’s about seeking God and hearing God’s voice over the din of this present day’s struggle.
As I have grown older, and I hope wiser, I have learned that I want to do good. When I was younger, I just buzzed around without much purpose but now, I like to put plans into place that do good. I like to make extra efforts on the behalf of others and go out of my way to help those in need. “Know thyself” is an old saying that I find very valuable. If you know yourself well then you can do things that you find fulfilling and rewarding. Here’s a bit of information you might find interesting.
“Know Thyself” was written on the forecourt of the Temple of Apollo at Delphi. Legend tells that the seven sages of ancient Greece, philosophers, statesmen and law-givers, who laid the foundation for western culture, gathered in Delphi to inscribe “know thyself” at the entry to its sacred oracle. The adage subsequently became a touch-stone for western philosophers, and extended its reach as the influence of Greek philosophy expanded. Read More
I always try to be brutally honest with myself and I know that I want to do good. I want to help those in need. I want to be a tiny light in the darkness that when combined with all of the other tiny lights creates a path to walk toward the greater light and freedom and goodness. 😀
This Is How I See My Life
So, here’s how I see it. I do see my cancer as a journey AND a battle AND as part of my “destiny” and somehow, in some weird and strange way, I know that God is here with me in the middle of this. God is here playing a part, my free will is playing a part and the randomness of life is playing a part in this crazy situation that I am in with my family. So, I have faith! and I try to be positive. I guess that I don’t have a single cliché that might simplify things but still, this is how I see my life. 😀 How do you see your life?