The Rope

The Rope Exercise.

During my “Healing With Words” group (for more details about this fantastic program, see my post Helpful Resources and Information I Wish I Had When First Diagnosed), we were asked to contemplate a rope.  Most simply, what is a rope?  What does a rope do?  What are the qualities or characteristics of a rope?  Then, in thinking about those ideas, we were asked to compare ourselves to that rope and specifically, how the concept of a rope applied to our cancer experience.

Although I wrote this piece more than one-year ago, I am amazed by how it still rings so true.

            Others rely on me to be their strength. I hear others comment how strong I am and have been. They cannot believe how I have kept it together through everything, while remaining so tough. They comment how they could never be so strong. They would have just given up and fallen apart. Yet, what else am I to do? I am a rope. I have no other choice, but to be strong.

Was I built this strong? Have I become like this over time, as each new experience and challenge adds one more layer, another strand, making me stronger and stronger? Maybe I have always had this incredible strength, but never knew it until I faced my breaking point, until I was just about to snap?

Time and time again, no matter what I face, I continue to hold on, never letting go. I refuse to break. Yet, I am still afraid I will one-day fall apart, that I will snap. I worry I will lose my strength, and that I won’t be able to hold on any longer.   Even worse, I fear that slowly and painfully my strands will completely unravel and that I will be gone. I am haunted by the thought that I will watch myself unravel that way, and yet, will have no control or ability to make myself strong again. I do not want to just rot away, left alone and forgotten, realizing that I completely lost that strength, which had once so impressed and inspired others.

I suppose in the end, one day every rope will become too worn, lose its might, or just snap. We were not built to last forever anyway. For now, I will just appreciate the strength I have everyday. I will cherish all the other ropes, which are here by my side, adding to my strength. I will continue to serve my purpose in aiding others, who may not be so strong and need my power to help them achieve their goals. That is all I can do. After all, I am just a rope.

 

Time, Fear, Hope…

Chronophobia-Fear-of-Time1-300x199

Time.  Fear.  Hope.  These simple thoughts/concepts dominate so much of our cancer experience.  I would doubt that there is a single person facing a cancer diagnosis, who hasn’t contemplated all of these things, in one way or another.  Every one of these ideas will be the focus of or touched upon in posts throughout the blog.

During my “Healing With Words” group (for more details about this fantastic program, see my post Helpful Resources and Information I Wish I Had When First Diagnosed), we were provided with various inspirational, reflective quotes on time, fear and hope. Many of these struck a chord in relation to my diagnosis.

As I find more quotes, I will continue to update this post.  For now, here are some of those quotes.

Quotes on Time

Time is a versatile performer. It flies, marches on, heals all wounds, runs out, and will tell. – Franklin P. Jones

You don’t get to choose how you’re going to die. Or when. You can only decide how you’re going to live. Now. – Joan Baez

Time has a wonderful way of weeding out the trivial. – Richard Ben Sapir, Quest

 The best thing about the future is that it only comes one day at a time. – Dean Acheson

Quotes on Fear

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself. “I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along. – Eleanor Roosevelt, You Learn By Living, 1960

The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown. – H. P. Lovecraft

Fear can be more dangerous than any disease. It swipes our joys and tramples our hopes. Days, weeks, even years can slip through yours fingers. If left unchecked, fear will strangle every breath from our lives. – Kris Carr

Quotes on Hope

“Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come. You wait and watch and work: you don’t give up.” – Anne Lamott

“Hope is the thing with feathers, that perches on the soul” – Emily Dickinson

“In the face of uncertainty, there is nothing wrong with hope.” – Bernie Siegel

“In every winter’s heart there is a quivering spring, and behind the veil of each night waits a smiling dawn” – Kahlil Gibran