Knowledge is key to a Healthy Life

This entry is part 12 in the series Improve Your Life, Improve Your Mind

Originally published as part of the A to Z challenge on 12 April 2018

The A to Z  challenge is over:

But the value of the posts is not. My theme for the challenge was “Improve your life, Improve your mind.” Nowhere is this topic more relevant than when you’re facing a huge challenge in your life like retirement, marital problems, health problems in your family, and especially cancer!

For that reason, it’s my intention to revisit each of the posts and invite folk who didn’t read them at the time to visit them now. And if you did read them before, if you were reading at the speed I did during the month, chances are you will find new thoughts to encourage you.

Please add your comments and share the posts on social media.

The purpose of Rise and Soar with its associated blog is to inspire and encourage those in the cancer valley, whether as patients, survivors, caregivers, family or friends. Please note that it is not a health site. It is meant to encourage folk. When I tackled the A to Z challenge I reasoned that these posts should apply to everyone who cares about what is happening to their bodies, be it through age or through cancer.

I plan to post one “letter” a week only, and will commence with those who saw the least amount of attention during April. Once the official Road Trip commences I will link to that.

So for this week, let’s look at 

Knowledge, the key to a healthy life.

Here are three easy ways to gain knowledge on most topics:

read more

Two Things Cancer Doesn’t Change

Originally written in 2014. Updated March, 2018.

How old are you?

I recently read an excellent blog post about a little girl who, when she’s asked how old she is, replies, “I’m me.” 

Unfortunately I don’t know the author. (If you do, please let me know so I can credit her accordingly.) But I do know this little doll on the left. She’s my first grandchild! Twenty something years ago!

Isn’t she adorable? read more

Victim or Victor

contemplative Victim or Victor? That is the question.

The Victim is overcome – The Victor overcomes.
The Victim has a diseased body -The Victor has a healthy attitude.
The Victim longs to stop crying – The Victor stocks up on tissues.
The Victim says, “Why me God?” – The Victor says, “Why not?”
The Victim dreads the trip down the Emotional Rollercoaster – The Victor knows that what goes down will soon go up again.
The Victim accepts everything the doctor says as accurate – The Victor asks questions about everything the doctor says.
The Victim blames the doctor when things go wrong – The Victor understands he’s only a doctor, not God.
The Victim cries out to God and pleads for help – The Victor has a two-way conversation with God.
The Victim knows people die of cancer – The Victor knows that many don’t.
The Victim tries to stay positive – The Victor refuses to be negative.
The Victim knows her prognosis – The Victor knows that is God’s department.
The Victim doesn’t understand – The Victor buys a book to learn.
The Victim is confused by the big words – The Victor finds out what they mean.
The Victim knows it’s getting worse – The Victor anticipates improvement.
The Victim dreads hair loss – The Victor buys a stylish wig.
The Victim anticipates side effects – The Victor looks for ways to beat them.
The Victim will one day go to Heaven with relief – The Victor will one day go to Heaven rejoicing.
When I received the diagnosis of cancer, I became a “Cancer Victim” – I chose to become a “Cancer Victor.”

©Shirley Corder

The Big ‘C’

Big CLong before I got cancer, I wondered why people called it by different names. I heard of “The Big C”, or “C.A.” Patients referred to “my problem” or “when I got sick”. It was as if cancer was something to be ashamed of or as if I must have done something very wicked to get such an awful disease.

After my diagnosis, I noticed a number of people seemed uneasy when I spoke of having cancer. They hastened to change the subject or assured me I’d be “just fine”. Both these attitudes could have sent me on the road to denial, which is already a major risk with a cancer diagnosis. So I resolved to call it by its name.

Yes, I had a life-threatening disease. Yes, I faced a difficult time of aggressive treatment. But cancer has a name.

It is finite.

It can be beaten.

Let’s rob it of some of its power and call it by its name. If you face a cancer diagnosis, I urge you to call it by its name and maintain an honest communication with your loved ones. Speak openly to your doctors and medical team. Ask them questions. Express your emotions honestly. If those close to you attempt to protect you from bad news, or if you try to pretend you are coping better than you are, you grant the disease even more power. As you talk together, you will gain knowledge and strength from one another. When I faced cancer, I thought of other meanings of the term “The Big C.” There are probably more. I encourage you to give this some thought, and share your ideas in the comment section below.

  • I found I needed “The Big C” of Courage
  • I also needed “The Big C” of Commitment to the treatment regime
  • I learned the importance of “The Big C” of Caring for myself
  • And I never let myself forget that my life was in the hands of the “Biggest C of All”, Jesus Christ.