Quote of the Day: “They say a person needs just three things to be truly happy in this world. Someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for.” Tom Bodett
Costa Rica was this wonderful break in the midst of winter. It felt especially cold this morning when I met Sue B. for our fun at 6:00 A.M. Snow had fallen the night before and the roads had a bit of snow but weren’t really slippery. We ran along, our bodies warming quickly from the running. In Costa Rica, I walked with Erin and Jen everyday. We would walk along the beach, or along a dirt road making our way through the neighborhoods of Playa Flamingo. Many of the homes sat high on a hill, the road steep leading to them, offering amazing views of the ocean.
When we did our adventure last Monday of river tubbing, I had the strongest memory of a former dream where I was flying over a windy river. It was so remarkably like the river we were traveling down. Dragonflies flying in and out of our view, the sun shining high overhead. Memories from that dream flooded my consciousness. The memory so vivid, the entire time that I was moving over rapids or floating slowly with the current, I kept feeling like I had experienced this before. I thought it was only a small coincidence that I ended up zip-lining over this same river later that day on the canopy tour. Throughout this trip, I couldn’t help but think of my state of mind a year ago and was pleased to understand that suffering ends and happy times return. I couldn’t imagine, a year after diagnosis, I would be in such a happy place, appreciating every experience, every day a gift.
I read in Time Magazine about a man who took a picture every day of the past 14 years during which he was diagnosed with cancer. It shows his progression dealing with cancer. Here’s what it said: “4,758 Portraits and Counting. Long before Flikr, fine-art photographer Jeff Harris began taking one self-portrait a day and posting it on his website. Thirteen years later, the project captures the cancer survivor’s life in all its moods and tones.” It shows only 30 self-portraits on this page but they each tell a story. There’s one of him holding hands with another person, showing just the arms and then another, a favorite of mine, part of his arm and his tennis racquet. All those things mean so much because when cancer is your diagnosis, you don’t know if you will get to enjoy those activities again. It’s as if something is taken away and then it’s given back and you get to love it in a new way. My mom asked me on our trip, if having cancer has made me look at life differently. It has certainly brought depth to my understanding of my own thoughts and feelings and I’m so grateful for that. I just passed through a period of doubt about whether my cancer will return. What is it about human nature, that so wants to know what the future will bring? I feel like I want to plan and know everything but with that said I must say the following. I woke up in Costa Rica one morning feeling very confident that the cancer is gone and won’t return. This strong impression, this wonderful conviction has given me renewed joy that I will live to enjoy this life and be given more days on this earth. I have hope!
View of Pacific Ocean on our morning walks, below: Colorado River- dreams