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Seven Thoughts on Accepting Change After Cancer

It's easy to hate change, especially when it barges in frightening and unwanted. Usually, the first instinct is to fight it every step of the way. But if it's serenity you seek, you're only going to get there by accepting the changes you cannot change.

When I'm struggling with change (which happens much more than I like to admit) the following help me see things through different eyes:

1.  "Without change, something sleeps inside us, and seldom awakens. The sleeper must awaken." - Frank Herbert - Change wakes us up and makes us re-evaluate our priorities and choices.

2.  "You must be the

Ready or Not, Time to Let Go

We cannot put off living until we are ready. Jose Ortega y Gasset

The calendar is very much on my mind and we're counting down the days. Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one...  WAIT!! I'm not ready!!

Our first-born child, our beautiful daughter, moves out of our home and into her dorm room in just a few days. She's starting college and we're starting to empty our nest. I'm betting we will have a harder time adjusting than she will. 

As I write this, she is downstairs sorting and packing. We spent several days this summer shopping, laughing and planning. Even so, it didn't seem quite real then. It does now. 

Am I at least closer to being ready than I was just a few weeks ago? What does" ready" really mean anyway? Loving words and being a bit freaked out, I decided to look up the definition.  As I read, I asked myself: Am I completely prepared? Am I duly equipped or adjusted?? Am I willing?? Well, yes....and no.

Yes, because it's time. We've raised our daughter for over 18 years to be the independent, intelligent, decent person she is today. This is her time to live life on a new plane, in a new dimension. And that dimension doesn't include us. It's all hers and we know she's going to rock it.

But, I would never say I was "completely" ready. I know from experience that it's hard to let her go. I remember the first day of day care and kindergarten, the first sleep-away camp, letting her drive away on her own in the car the first time, etc., etc. In the end, all you can do is gulp, pray and release. But ready? I don't know about that.

All I know is that I've been here before. This isn't my first transition rodeo. I've faced cosmic shifts before. I've been single and suddenly married, childless and child-full. I've been naively healthy and suddenly cancer diagnosed. I've been wheeled into an operating room mentally kicking and screaming.

Are we ever truly ready for any of it? Or, is it enough just to be mindfully present and ready to welcome the experience, whether it brings us losses, gifts and/or unexpected ecstasy? My answer to that question: "It's gonna have to be."

What are you not quite ready for? I'd love to hear from you in the comments below!

Survival > Existence,

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