I have been inspired and encouraged to share my journey, along with the insights and lessons I learned along the way. And so here we go, into the world of the blogosphere.
I have been a student of self-help, motivational and inspirational teaching and coaching for many years. It started about a year after I graduated from college and was working as an engineer building a nuclear power plant in Florida. I had moved away from home confident, independent and self reliant. Things were going well at work and I very much loved living, working and playing in Florida. Unexpectedly and surprisingly, I found myself in a deep funk for no apparent reason. So what did I do? I went to the bookstore and searched for books that would not only help me understand what I was experiencing, but also provide steps I could take to get out of the funk. I was successful and soon overcame the funk. (Much later, I would learn that I was experiencing symptoms of mild depression.)
That was the mid-1970s. Since that time, I have read many books, attended workshops, worked through guided programs and listen gurus and coaches on tape, CDs and podcasts. I took to heart Stephen Covey’s lesson about “sharpening the saw.” To this day, I continue to seek to learn from the experience, techniques and practices of others. If you drive in the car with me, you might find yourself listening to a podcast from Tony Robbins, Tim Ferriss or Scott Smith.
After many adventures and challenges, I realize that I have been the beneficiary of people who were willing to share what they had experienced and learned along the way. I have always been willing to try to help others by sharing my own personal experience and lessons learned. But, until now, that has mostly been on a one-to-one basis. With much prodding and encouragement, I begin the process of sharing through writing and with a broader audience. This blog is a first step.
We will begin with recent events and, specifically, the part of my personal journey that motivated me to start this blog. When we visit our doctor, what’s one word that we most fear hearing. For many of us, that one word is “cancer”. How would you react if your doctor told you that recent test results showed you had cancer? How about if this happened to a family member or a close friend. I know that for many of you this is not a theoretical exercise; so many people’s lives have been disrupted by cancer. On Valentine’s Day 2017, my doctor spoke the dreaded word. He said that my test results revealed I had CANCER. That was 10 months ago, but I remember the moment like it was yesterday. It was surreal.
I don’t really want to relive the experience or dwell on my cancer journey. I would much rather focus on the present moment. But I know that for others, the cancer journey is your present moment. And so I feel an obligation to share how I got through the treatment, to provide experience-based suggestions on specific strategies and techniques that worked well for me. I also want to provide insights for friends and family trying to be supportive and helpful to cancer patients in their lives.
Expect the next few editions of A Very Different Journey to focus primarily on the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of fighting cancer. TTFN.