Breast Cancer Awareness: Firsthand Survivor Story Part I

It’s breast cancer awareness month and what better way to spread awareness than to have those who have experienced it. Over the next few days, we will be paying tribute to survivors with guest posts by their family members.

20141026-015218-6738436.jpg

The following was written and submitted by writer and John Jay College of Criminal Justice student, Angela Wright.

Cancer. The word itself sounds deadly. When you hear that you have cancer, you may feel as though your life is over and you may even question why did it happen to you. Many people go through a process of depression and sulking when diagnosed with an illness such as cancer.
Yet I would like to tell you a story about two sisters that have both been diagnosed with breast cancer and chose different paths. One sister called M was told she had breast cancer and had a better chance of beating it if she allowed the doctors to remove the breast that the cancer cells had invaded. M had big full sized breasts and refused to remove any one of them because that’s who she felt she was and was known for. Unfortunately for M, she lost her battle to breast cancer and died.
A few months later, M’s sister Sis was also told that cancer cells had invaded the cells and tissue of one breast and it was recommended by doctors to have that breast removed. Unlike M, Sis told the doctors to do whatever they needed to do to save her life. She underwent chemo and had a mastectomy. She sported her shaved head and wore her mastectomy bra proudly. She may have looked different to others but she was a breast cancer survivor.
With that being said, there may be some situations and circumstances that many of you face that seem like it will wipe you out, like all hope is lost. You can give up and die in your situation or you can choose to live and fight. Fight to win. Fight not to just survive but fight to live. There is life after breast cancer, just ask Sis, our survivor.

20141026-093405-34445551.jpg

20141026-093405-34445207.jpg

Live Purposefully

As I thought about things to write about, all I continued to hear was “live purposefully.” Although I’ve written about this in the past, this blog is for you to receive encouragement from where I am. My personal real life experiences. This is where I am.

I went to a funeral, rather celebration of life, Saturday morning. The life of a 19 year old young man. He was the brother of a friend that I’ve had maybe two encounters with. However, you could tell what kind of person he was. Great personality, making jokes and all around happy.

After attending the funeral and hearing more about the life he lived, I was amazed. Despite what people saw on the outside, this young man was in pain for years. Had battles with death early on, but you could never tell. Even in this, he always lived his life to the fullest. The words that were spoken on his behalf were amazing. To hear young people say that he was the only person to be able to get through to them in the midst of their depression, was overwhelming. He lived his life with the intent of fulfillment.

I was beyond inspired leaving that church Saturday afternoon. Many of us struggle with living with all of our being. Sharing all of our gifts freely, being joyous, caring for others more than we do ourselves. He didn’t allow his condition to keep him from doing all that he desired.

Many times we feel as if we can’t do a certain thing because we don’t have this or have that. But we have no idea who needs what we do have. This is why it’s important for us to live with purpose. When we purpose in our hearts to give all that we have, we can touch peoples lives in ways we couldn’t even imagine.

I’ve struggled time and time again with giving my all. But when I contemplate on the purpose behind what I’ve been given, I realize I can’t sit back it on it. Passion goes far beyond what can be taught and your circumstances. So I encourage you not to doubt yourself because of what you don’t have or the situations that you are in. Use the passion that’s within you and live your life to the fullest, intentionally with purpose! 20141021-235141-85901734.jpg

Proper Planning Leads to Great Success

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve begun to realize just how important it is to create a schedule for all of the things that we have to do. I’m not extremely busy, however, with every responsibility I have it can get a little chaotic at times. And that’s when I don’t plan properly. This is definitely what I’ve signed up for: but if I fail to plan, I plan to fail.

Often times we find ourselves in situations where we become overwhelmed and the quality of what we produce isn’t to our greatest potential. When we don’t schedule our priorities accurately, we lack time. And with lacking the proper time, we may find ourselves rushing to get things done. In the rush, our work may be mediocre or not the best of our ability. I recently experienced this. I rushed to complete a project and at the end I didn’t feel as if the finished product was the best that I could do. It was good, but it wasn’t great. I knew that it could’ve been better had I put more time into it. Which showed me just how beneficial my to-do lists and prior planning really are.

When we learn to plan and create a sufficient schedule, we can produce quality work. It’s important to always be clear in your thinking, and get it all down before you make a move. This is when whatever you have set out to do will be great.

So I encourage you today to plan properly and take advantage of the time that you have. Create a plan and follow through. Then the work you produce will be that of your greatest potential, a reflection of the preparations you’ve made. Proper planning leads to great success.

20141002-120157-43317148.jpg
(Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance)