At the beginning of my workshops, creativity classes or events that I speak at, I emphasize the need for women - of all ages and backgrounds - to take a little time for themselves each and every day - to rest, restore and revitalize. In fact, I usually say the Wings gratitude prayer to begin each class:
"Surrender to the Beauty,
Surrender to the Light,
Rest, Restore, Reunite."
These words, or any words of inspiration you choose (a poem, song, prayer, meditation,) remind you to reunite all the pieces of yourself that you have left behind during the day, the week, the months, even year. Women give selflessly to others, taking care of children, businesses, spouses and significant others, parents, grandparents, siblings and on it goes - yet rarely take time for themselves.
Through my work with cancer patients at several local hospitals, I have learned a great deal about patience and what it means to take time for self. When the surgery, chemo and radiation are done, the real healing begins - it often takes women with breast cancer close to a year to feel more like themselves; and, many tell me that the "new norm" is not the old self. Things have most definitely changed in all regards.
One friend of mine in particular, Liza, who has survived breast cancer not once, twice but THREE TIMES, has taught me quite a bit about what it means to properly heal - on all levels. Miss Liza will be blogging from time to time on her experiences with cancer and will also be developing larger articles for Wings on cancer in young women, which can be different than cancer in women age 45 and older.
Liza comes to us from South Africa and Paris, where she was formally educated. She has a terrific sense of humor - it's the bunk! - and a graciousness and human understanding that is quite rare. Please look for her blogs and articles that will be on Wings soon.
In the meantime, I have uploaded the Wings gratitude prayer as bookmarkers, if you would like to print and use them. I hope you do take time for yourself each and every day, even a short walk, a cup of tea or coffee or writing in your journal or "journey book." The results over time will be profound.