Just a few thoughts heading into Thanksgiving…

Some years back I read a book written by Bill Shore which profoundly influenced my thinking. The title is “The Cathedral Within: Transforming Your Life by Giving Something Back”. If you have not read it, I highly recommend it.

Although the book inspired me, life got in the way and, like every good procrastinator, I made half-hearted attempts at action.

I began writing this blog as a way of coping with a life changing cancer diagnosis- specifically I wanted to share my story to educate and inform others and share some personal experiences that shaped me and honor the people I love.

Said more simply, I wanted to do something positive in the service of others.

You know- leave the world a better place than I found it.

Along the way I discovered I needed a little work on my spirituality. More specifically, I wanted to be able to express its importance in sustaining me in my journey.

My writing has been interrupted by the effects of my treatment but as my mind has cleared, so have some of my thoughts and I want to share a few of them.

Recent events have moved me in a healing way- healing as in my spirit- I leave the physical issues to the doctors. I do as I’m told and go on about my life as best I can- I am what they label as “treatment compliant”- not sure why I find that amusing- but I do.

The most important thing I would like to share with everyone is this:

It is God’s timing as to when and how I leave this world- it was true on the day I was born and nothing changed on the day I learned I had incurable cancer.

It was always beyond my control and will remain so.

I work to keep my heart and mind open to a miracle while focusing on trying to help others in ways that I can.

I refuse to be consumed by my disease.

Almost daily I learn of friends and family of friends who are facing devastating illnesses and I have learned that by sharing our journeys and our fears we make each other stronger.

One thing has been made crystal clear to me over the last four plus years and it is that there are no coincidences- things happen and people enter our lives for a reason. We may not know the reason immediately but eventually it becomes clear.

I met an impressive young man, sitting on a porch, smoking cigars (yeah I know, no need for comment). Our conversation drifted to his occupation and, since I’m nosy by nature, I started asking questions.

He was clearly a man with a mission and had passion and conviction for his work.

Our connection was immediate.

He is the Executive Director of Freedom House, a Greensboro, NC based non-profit.

In a nutshell, Freedom House serves women who struggle with addiction and their children and it is Christian based.

The program is unique in its structure, their success rate far exceeds the norm.

If you follow my blog, you know I have struggled with addiction since I was a teen.

I know what broken, hopeless and helpless feels like.

Freedom House’s beliefs, mission and message align with mine better than I could ever hope for.

A light switched on in my heart and soul.

I was intrigued and have since met the founder and another leader in the organization, visited their new campus and offered to volunteer my time and financial support.

As long as they will have me, I’ve chosen a way to give back- to do my part in building the cathedral.

If you want to be inspired visit http://www.helpfreedomhouse.org and listen to Ann’s message.

I will be traveling on Thanksgiving for a check up but that’s OK, I have already had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

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