Heather’s blog: Creating the life I want & setting daily intentionsJune 24, 2014
A couple of weeks ago I got the opportunity to attend Survivor Conference 2014: Ignite in Toronto. This was my second conference, my third Young Adult Cancer Canada (YACC) event, and another instance of me leaving feeling enlightened, connected, and fulfilled. YACC has never failed to deliver this for me. At each event I have attended, I have been in a different chapter with my cancer journey, and so with each event I take away something different that helps me turn a page and move on to a next part in my story. At SC14Ignite, my biggest take away was setting my daily intentions.
Since I was diagnosed with cervical cancer in December 2008, one of my largest struggles has been feeling like I lost all control. My body did not ask for all the long term, after effects of the treatments I received. I didn’t decide not to have more children. I did not choose cancer. These losses made me feel like my survival was dark and absent, and that I lacked any future direction in my life after cancer. What now?
Setting my daily intentions is a small way I can feel like I am taking back some of the control. By setting my intentions each morning, I feel like I am making a conscious decision of how I want to feel in the here and now, and the action I am going to take to make whatever that is happen. When you become clear on how you want to feel, it makes it easier to create the life you truly want to live.
I had my last round of radiation therapy and I completed my treatments for cancer on June 18, 2009. On that same day I also set a life intention to take more time to focus on what was really important to me: my family and my friends. I took action to make this happen by working fewer hours, trying to stress less about the little things, and living life in the moments as they were presented to me.
I’m not perfect, and even with the best intentions, I haven’t always been successful in living my life this way. However, as I approach my five year milestone of living without cancer, I find myself reflecting on that intent and coming back to it because it is still the life I truly want to live.
I thought a lot about how I wanted to celebrate my “cancerversary”; I feel like five years is a big turning point for me. So how do I celebrate this? I thought about taking a big trip, throwing a huge party, taking a big risk (bungee jumping), getting a tattoo! All of these were great ideas, but then the best idea came to me — I need to celebrate by being true to me in the biggest possible way, and spend the day living my life the way I truly desire — with my family and friends.
June 18, 2014 – Daily Intention
Love. Connection. Life.
So I did exactly that! I spent my day celebrating and surround by people I truly love. We had connection over dinner, great conversation, and of course, cheesecake was involved. They are my strength, my joy, and my purpose, and they help me create the life I truly want to live.
Live life on purpose,