Originally published October 5, 2017.
My husband (a guy who loves Texas Holdem) has a great saying; “In life, you gotta play the cards you’re dealt.” All of us are dealt great hands in life, like finding a soul mate, getting a promotion, giving birth to a healthy baby and more. But, once in a while, we’re dealt a shitty hand – we’re “downsized” at work…..or we lose our home….our spouse asks for a divorce….or a biopsy comes back positive. In her memoir, What I Know For Sure, Oprah Winfrey writes: “Every challenge we take on has the power to knock us to our knees. But what’s more disconcerting than the jolt itself is our fear that we won’t withstand it. When we feel the ground beneath us shifting, we panic. We forget everything we know and allow fear to freeze us. The only way to endure the quake is to adjust our stance. We can’t avoid the daily tremors. They come with being ALIVE! I believe these experiences are gifts that force us to search for a new center of balance. Don’t fight them. Let them help you adjust your footing.”
Last week, I was diagnosed with stage one breast cancer – a hand I thought I would never, ever be dealt. I was shocked because I assumed my healthy lifestyle simply made me immune to such things. I keep my weight down. I eat organic. I drink gallons of green tea. I practice yoga. I walk the dogs every day. I pump the shit out of my heart in spin class twice a week! But it’s God’s Will, not mine. Everything happens for a reason. Everything works out for the best.
Since sharing my diagnosis, the outpouring of love and support from our yoga community has been amazing. And I’ve heard many inspiring stories of our students own courageous battles with cancer. It reminds me that WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER. Everything belongs to all of us – rough days and rainbows, dirty laundry and sun drenched skies, hungry hearts and fall harvests, angry words and healing prayers. Every challenge we take on serves to remind us that we are stronger than we know, more capable than we ever dreamed and loved more than we could possibly imagine. Surrounded by all this love and light, we can then play any cards we’re dealt with grace and gratitude. NamaSLAY cancer, my friends and take care!