All tagged Cancer

Fly a Little Higher - A New Book by Laura Sobiech

Songs that tell stories really speak to my heart. Music creates a powerful connection between others. Songwriters communicate personal stories and share experiences. The audience listens to the songs and relates to what the other went through.

For me, that is what music is all about: support. When listening to a beautiful song, you can feel a sense of hope and connection! That is what Zach Sobiech’s song, Clouds, gave to me when I first heard it.

Zach Sobiech: Your Legacy Will Live On!

As you know, I love sharing stories of people who have impacted my journey.  I was saddened to find out that a beautiful soul, Zach Sobiech, lost his battle to cancer yesterday.  Zach was only 18 years old when he died but in his short time he embraced life to the fullest.  His passion for life, love of others, and contagious joy touched my heart as well as those of many others. His legacy will live on.  As Zach said in his documentary, "It's really simple, actually, just try to make people happy."

Rise & Shine Interview: Cameron Von St. James

Therefore, today I'm happy to feature Cameron Von St. James and his FAMILY as part of my Profiles of Perseverance  series. To this family every day is family day, as they know how valuable it is to be together. Cameron initially reached out to me and wanted to share his family's story, which he called "Living with Cancer." After I read it, I had to ask Cameron to also share his pieces of advice about overcoming obstacles. His writing moved me to tears, as many in my life have been affected by this disease.  As you will see below, the Von St. James family is beautiful and perseverant. Hearing their story shows how important social support is in overcoming obstacles. Thank you, Cameron, Heather, and Lily, for reminding others what is important in life! 

Rise & Shine Interview: Tamarisk Saunders-Davies

I have interviewed many people for my #FuelPersistence series about how they persevere through many types of obstacles.  After Tamarisk reached out and shared her story with me, I had to ask her to be part of this series.  She is a brave indidivual who perseveres despite the challenges she is presented with in life.  Tamarisk has really inspired me, and I thank her for talking about difficult subjects.  It was really fitting to hear from an individual who is at high-risk of developing cancer, as many people in my life have been affected by cancer. As Tamarisk describes herself: "I’m a Connections Catalyst. Awesome title, right? Yeah, I made it up because ‘life coach’ doesn’t remotely sum up who I am, what I believe, or how I show up in the world. My purpose is to help you get more of what you want by showing you how to create the foundation from which to get it. We’re talking: greater confidence, clarity, and commitments around your emotional and spiritual well-being."

Thanks, Tamarisk, for sharing with us the lessons you have learned throughout your life! Read Tamarisk's interview below and feel free to leave comments afterwards :)

How to Help a Friend Cope With Illness

Perhaps you were like me; you never really thought death or serious illness would happen to you or to someone you cared about deeply.  Then one day, you get the news.  Trust me, how you cope with it makes all the difference. I initially wrote this post months ago, but after hearing many stories of illness recently, I thought it would be fitting to share this story now.

Song of the Week: "The Will to Survive"

I saw the video for the song written and produced by Megan McNeil , a childhood cancer patient called "Will to Survive." I had to share it, as it touched my heart.  The song has such a beautiful message.  Megan battled cancer for four years; she passed away at the end of January of last year. Her legacy will live on through the song and the lives she touched.

RIP Sable: You left your Paw Print on my Heart!

It was a sad day yesterday. My family and I had to put down our 16 year-old sheltie, Sable, who had been battling bladder cancer. Sable tried to hold on for as long as she could, but yesterday she gave up her fight.  Up until yesterday she had been energetic and strong but that changed very suddenly.  We had no choice but to put her to sleep as she refused to eat, had a difficult time drinking, and had little to no energy. However, even in the face of adversity, she still stayed positive and died with a smile on her face.  She is reunited with her best buddy Comet, our cat who died last June.

RIP Lisa Simpson Brewster

It is with great sadness that I announce the passing of a friend and mentor of mine, Lisa Simpson Brewster. Lisa passed away after a long battle with Breast Cancer.

Sometimes people come into your life, touch your heart, and your life will never be the same. I first met Lisa, three years ago, in an educational context.  Despite the twenty-year age difference between we connected and became friends. She was back in school starting a new career path in counselling. From the moment I met her, I noticed her enthusiasm and passion for life. It was infectious. She is also the proud mother of her son, Adam. Even with all the hardships she had endured, she pressed on and didn’t let these obstacles stop her from living. Lisa had such a beautiful heart.

The Will To Survive: Why I Wear My LIVESTRONG Bracelet

I wear my bracelet in memory of:

  • My grade 5 teacher who developed lung cancer from second-hand smoke in the environment she was living in (and she never smoked a day in her life).  She passed away when I was in 6th grade.
  • My elementary school principal, who was one of the nicest men, developed cancer and passed away when I was in grade four.
  • Friends’ parents who have passed away from cancer.
  • My cat who, this past June, passed away from a huge tumour in her stomach.
  • My friend, Lisa Simpson Brewster passed away Breast Cancer. 

Ode to Comet!

We all grieve in different ways.  I'm turning to writing to express the thoughts that are in my head right now.

I just came home from taking our family cat, Comet to the vet.  She usually loves to eat and will come running whenever you put kibble in her bowl.  Also, she constantly would wake us up by either bunting our face or slightly nibbling our hair when she wanted to wake us up at night to give her a midnight/early morning snack.  Well, when she wouldn't eat and would sniff her favourite foods and walk away; we knew something was up.