Grace is a tough one for many people. We can freely give it to other people, but rarely do we give it to ourselves. Why is it so hard to focus on compassion for ourselves? One of the things I learned during my cancer journey is your need to give yourself a whole lot of Grace. I pushed myself to be positive, you need to. I was and still am focused on the end result, so yes, I still feel the desire to push any negative thoughts out of my head. But staying positive can be hard at times. Sometimes that feels like you are trying to juggle balls….which is something I have no idea how to do and instead of juggling them you just want to throw them at the wall. You know throwing at the wall shouldn’t be your thought, but it is. And then you remember…….GRACE.
I was humbled with the support I received from diagnosis to present. Still today, 13 months since my diagnosis, I will meet people and they will tell me they are still praying for me. FOR ME. People have given me such meaningful gifts, and not just the material kind. They inspired me, they made me laugh, but most of all they showed me how much support I had. It isn’t just me that is fighting this battle. I have a huge army made up of family, friends and community fighting this with me. I have GRACE.
Grace is meeting those moments on the journey, then picking yourself back up, being humble enough to learn, and not being to hard on yourself – Michelle Peluso
What I also came to realize is I could work a little harder in the area of giving to other people. Going through this and being the recipient of this tremendous support, I realize what a positive affect it has on my healing. I think back to times I saw someone I knew who was on a some type of journey and yet I said nothing because, “I didn’t know what to say.” I have since learned from all the people who supported me, you just say or do whatever comes to your heart, it will be perfect, and exactly what the person needs (that’s how it seemed to work for me!) People just need to know you are thinking and praying for them. It’s not to hard to let them know, give it a try! Give them GRACE.
I was determined and still am to respond to anyone who has reached out to me. I will answer any text message, phone message, or email. It was also important to me to hand write thank yous to everyone who took the time to send me something that lifted my spirits. People who reached out to me needed to know how much of an impact it made for me and in turn I wanted to share my journey with them. I’ve learned that a face to face thank you is even better. I encourage you step out of your comfort zone and speak up so people can…see the GRACE
I’ve created my own acronym from my experience:
GIVE - whatever is in your heart to those who are of need. You will get back so much more and your heart will overflow.
RECEIVE -what people are offering, most times it comes at a time when you needed it most, and probably didn’t realize it.
ASK – Don’t be afraid to ask people how they are or what they need. Many times’ you may assume one thing, but will be surprised to find out what the person is really going through.
CARE – People truly care and have your best interest in mind. Being reminded of that from time to time is beautiful.
EMOTION – Yes this is what it comes down to, life always give us a roller coaster of emotions, that’s okay. Focus on the ones that bring you Grace.
I know firsthand that we can be hard on ourselves, and that cannot be helped. Sometimes that is a good thing. In times when it is not, I encourage you to think about all the ways you can give yourself a little kindness, a little Grace.