Cancer Healing Retreat: Are You on a Cancer Healing Journey?
I recently returned from a trip out west to Sedona, Arizona. What a beautiful destination, especially one for my reflection on my Cancer Healing Journey. While I was in Sedona, I participated in a “Cancer Healing Retreat”. The one-day retreat was part of my continuation of my healing journey. My participation in the Cancer Healing Retreat was a choice I made to celebrate my 10 years of surviving ovarian cancer. Are you on a Cancer Healing Journey?
The Cancer Healing Retreat was intended to resolve resistance issues for the more newly diagnosed cancer patient. Honestly, I figured I was doing something right to have survived 10 years, but I also knew I needed to re-establish my survivorship skills from this new vantage point of surviving 10 years. I realized I need not let my guard down to cancer. It is a powerful foe. I do not want to allow or permit it to creep back into my life. I viewed my Cancer Healing Retreat as sort of like having a survivor tune-up.
My Cancer Healing Retreat was hosted by an 11 year cancer survivor of head & neck cancer. His story is, as are all cancer survivor stories, quite amazing. I find it gives such credibility to a healing journey to be led by a fellow cancer survivor…a mentor. There are far too many folks in our world who claim they can heal without knowing what the cancer journey is really like. This man is a true mentor, a frontiersman, a Daniel Boone persona who has walked through the cancer valleys and climbed up over the mountain to the other side, to the land of survivorship. I trusted he could show me how to use a few new survivorship tools and add them to my repertoire of survivorship skills.
One obvious method we used on the Cancer Healing Retreat was the “forgiveness” method. I have read many books by a variety of authors, both those having survived cancer and those who never have experienced cancer, who use this method for the cancer healing journey. I was astonished to learn how I still carry issues with me. I must have had a gigantic bag of issues when I was diagnosed because over these past 10 years I have been pulling out big issues and little ones from my bag. I have been doing a good job of releasing them…discarding them. They have weighed me down mentally, emotionally and physically.
This time, on my Cancer Healing Retreat, I learned to forgive myself over an issue I have been carrying with me for more than 20 years. I had to forgive myself for not honoring my father’s wish for me to let go of my fear of the voyage towards accomplishing my dreams. My father, on his death-bed gave me his last lecture about how to live life. He was so eloquent in forming his words of wisdom and making note of what he saw as my gift from God. He expressed how he did not want me to repeat our family history of settling for what was considered the norm. My father did not want me to freeze in fear of what I considered as inadequacies and the potential of the resulting consequences. My father confessed he had frozen in fear when he was in his early 40’s when he had his life to live, children to raise, college tuitions to pay and his dreams to follow.
I had always wondered why I had not recorded my last conversation with Dad or written down my father’s words of wisdom. On my Cancer Healing Retreat I learned how badly I felt about myself for not honoring my father’s advice for me to follow my dreams. I observed how much I cling to fear. I once again, learned how important it is to let go of issues like fear so I can more fully enjoy life.
I did let go of fear when I was having chemotherapy. Back then I learned to let go so I could enjoy what remained of my life while I was on the cancer treatment journey. Clearly, through my Cancer Healing Retreat, I became aware that I am in need of re-learning the skill of letting go…letting go of my fear.
As I reflect upon the Cancer Healing Retreat and view my issue with fear from far above the present moment, the issue itself seems so trite and yet is has been dragging me in the dirt for over 2 decades. YIKES! I am having an outpouring of all the cliché quotes such as:
- And until you move, there isn’t a path.
- Every man is the architect of his own fortune. – Sallust
- “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past” (Isaiah 43:18, NIV)
- “Trust yourself. Create the kind of self that you will be happy to live with all of your life. Make the most of yourself by fanning the tiny, inner sparks of possibility into flames of achievement.” ~Golda Meir
- “Change is not easy, but it is simple. Things will always change. We don’t have a choice about that. But we do have a choice about how we react to change. It really boils down to this…either we manage change, or it will manage us.” ~Mac Anderson
- “Whether you think you can, or think you can’t…you’re right.”
- To be wronged is nothing unless you continue to remember it. – Confucius
- “Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.” ~Carl Bard
This last quote seems to really make a grand statement on my cancer healing journey. We can all create a brand new ending. I know I am by surviving ovarian cancer for 10 years. I am now launching my second decade of surviving ovarian cancer. Are you on a Cancer Healing Journey? What is keeping you from thinking you can survive cancer? When will you start to create your new ending? You can create your own Cancer Healing Retreat: Are You on a Cancer Healing Journey?
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