Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Walking, Listening and Taking a Break

I've been downloading the A New Earth on-line class to my iPod and have been walking my buns off while I listen to it. The weather has been so beautiful I want to soak it up before the heat sets in and I retreat to the air conditioning.

Today, I made the very hard decision to take a break from my volunteer work for the ACS. It's just something I need to do right now and I think this letter pretty much sums up why...

Dear ****,
It has been a great privilege to be a part of the Reach to Recovery program. I feel by sharing my story I give other young woman hope to push through treatment so they can begin to put their cancer experience behind them. It’s been 5 years since I battled breast cancer and 3 since tongue cancer. I always thought once you finished treatment cancer left you alone, but it doesn’t. With each check-up or ache and pain thoughts of cancer flood my mind.

As I try to heal my mind and spirit I decided to stop talking about “my story” except in my Reach to Recovery work. Cancer has taken so much of my time and energy already I just can not give it any more. It is for this reason, I have decided to take a pause from my Reach work for the next year. I don’t take this decision lightly as I know the ***** Reach Program needs young volunteers. I have always felt so appreciated by the ACS. I know ***** is now involved and I’m hoping she can provide the support while I take this break. I’m taking the next step in my recovery. I’ll be sure to check back with you next spring and if time gets the best of me and I forget please don’t hesitate to call.

I spoke to (anonymous patient) last night. From our conversation I gather she’ll need additional support. She’s having a rough time of it. I did not mention my break in volunteer work. I’d like to request that at some point another Reach volunteer contact her as I think she would benefit from follow-up.

Thank you and the ACS for all you do and for letting me be a part of it.


I figured out the only reason I had continued my Reach work well after realizing it was time to take a break was my ego. If you are reading/studying A New Earth you will understand what I mean by that.

On an up note, WE BOOKED OUR SUMMER VACATION TO NEW YORK CITY TODAY! I'm so excited. We've been holding out on the Big Apple until we felt like the kids were old enough to manage it. The kids have talked about going to NYC since they saw a Little Einstein episode about it. Every time we drive through Jacksonville Nathan asks if we are in NYC! Will he be surprised to see the real thing!

A shout out goes to my mom today. She's been helping with the kids a lot this week and even came to the rescue this morning when I had car trouble. Shortly after picking up our car pool buddy, Samantha, I noticed my check engine light was on. I didn't think too much of it since I knew I was overdue for an oil change. A few minutes later I noticed a rubbery smell and hear Nathan say, "It smells like a bouncy ball in here". By the time I get in the car loop at Nathan's school I see some smoke coming from under the hood, but the temperature gage is fine. Could it be a fire? I'm sandwiched in between cars and figure if I can keep the car moving hopefully I can get to the auto shop down the road. Nathan and Samantha are being silly and not paying attention to the fact that we are now at the front of the school and I'm starting to panic a little about the smoke. I yell at them to "GET OUT OF THE CAR!" Oh, and my windows are down so we don't have to suck in the melting rubber ball smell so no doubt the teacher out front must have thought I was one bitchy mom! No, "Have a great day, I love you" from this mom! Thankfully my mom met Reese and I at the auto shop and after leaving the car for repair took Reese to school and me home. A half a million dollars later the car is fixed.

Thanks Mom!


AnnMarie said...

sorry about the car! urgh

we will have to get together soon ( I know I owe you a phone call's been busy with work and the Coop!) but Rob is reading the New Earth too and I am sure you both will have a lot of insight to give each other.

oh I LOVE NY :)

Anna said...

I think the hope is that you would pursue volunteerism and helping others from the "ethic of care" perspective and not for the gain of the ego. Like so many other philosophies suggest, if your sole motivation for (whatever) is ego based, you will be disappointed.

I'm leaving for NYC on Sunday, I'll be thinking of you.

I wonder if we should consider Oprah's motives and her agenda?

Jen said...

I kinda laughed at the car thing, where you yelled at the kids. Sounds like something I would do. Yesterday I was holding Jake, the doorbell rang, Frank the dog ran out the front door as did Luke...I screamed my head off in the front yard trying to corral them. I'm sure I was quite the sight. (The dude at the door was the yardboy.)