Be Well

I may as well just come out and say it - I am absolutely terrified of one day becoming  part of the statistics of folks who get that dreaded phone call from the doctor relaying news that I have a terminal illness.

Where is this coming from? Well, just yesterday, I was pulled into an impromptu meeting with a few colleagues at my day job to discuss something important. We all chatted cheerfully as we normally do before a meeting but that happy banter came to a screeching halt. We came to find out that the purpose of the meeting was to be informed that a co-worker of ours had been recently diagnosed with breast cancer. I distinctly remember the wave of chills that overcame me as everyone's chatter fell into a cold silence once their ears registered this horrible news. I think what was even more shocking was that with this recent announcement the total number of women in our building who are currently battling breast cancer or have survived it now came to a total of 4. As crazy as it sounded, my colleague blurted out "Sheesh....what's going on? Is there something in the building?"

That meeting was a harsh reality check for all of us that cancer of any sort doesn't discriminate on age, race, background, or whether you're in sunny California or in snowy Alaska. At the end of the day as I walked to my car for the commute home, I couldn't help but be reminded once again that health is so far more precious than money or things in this world.

More than ever, I am extremely grateful for the life and health I have been given. And I hope you are, too.

This Mermaid Fights Cancer

I am thankful for good health. I am thankful for the good health of my family and friends. In my opinion, the great difference, between being young and getting older, is the appreciation for health that allows you to move, breathe, and enjoy life without limitation. As much as I cringe to admit it, I recall vividly as a teenager behaving in ways that arrogantly showed the world I am fine taking my health for granted, because, hey, it sure feels like I'm gonna live foreverrrrr, whoo-hoo!
Ugh. If I could flag down a quick ride on a time machine, I absolutely would so I could shake myself out of that kind of immature thinking.
I had recently learned that co-worker's cancer had come back after a few years of remission, this time affecting her lungs. And at around the same time, I had learned of a family member who, miraculously, discovered her cancer had not come back after the doctors had done a thorough scan of her body. Though I've never gone through the experience as a cancer survivor, it would be foolish of me to ignore these stories that affect so many people around me, both close family and strangers alike.
My close friend, Celez, is doing her part in offering hope for leukemia and lymphoma warriors. I say warriors because in my mind, to be a warrior, implies strength and constant will to courageously fight. Celez's own mother is a breast cancer survivor and come October, she will be participating in a triathlon through Team in Training with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society to help raise funds for this organization.
Celez has a knack for saying things that forever stand out in my mind, even from the time we were in 7th grade and I barely could pronounce her unusual name. In her latest blog post, she writes about her experience in swim training:
"I'm lucky enough to be healthy and living a life I chose for myself. I'm choosing to make my body swim, bike, and run. However, there are so many people living with leukemia, lymphoma and other blood cancers who never choose to be sick. It's because I respect and admire all of those who are fighting through the toughest moments in their lives, do I just suck it up, get in the water and channel my inner mermaid."

I am proud of her and the so many others who willingly, actively, and unselfishly do their part for causes like this. If you feel led to donate or would like to follow along as my friend Celez channel's her inner mermaid for an awesome cause and trains for the triathalon in October, please visit Celez's Fundraising Page.

Happy Friday and thank you for your generous support. Go mermaids!!