Faith

“Seeds of faith are always within us; sometimes it takes a crisis to nourish and encourage their growth. ”
Susan L. Taylor

My story about faith

I  struggled with faith during the early stages of my cancer diagnosis and treatment.
I lost my faith and some people asked me why did I loose it. My response was that I felt that my Father had abandoned me. I asked the people around me who had faith, to pray for me and intercede on my behalf,  because I simply  could not pray anymore.  Six months down the line, my faith was restored through no intervention.
Faith is your belief system and as such is personal.  My faith was restored owing to the fact that I did not pass away from cancer.  I did ask myself the question, what options did I have, if not to have faith?  I have to live with hope, I have to believe that there is Something bigger than myself in the universe .  As a result I started believing again.
During the early stages when my faith was lost,  I went to Church every blessed day to light a candle, but I did not pray as I had no words or did not know what to pray for.  I had figuratively lost my voice.   I encouraged my friends who were not religious but wanted to support me to do the same and simply light a candle for me.
Did you lose your faith or was your faith strengthened as result of your cancer diagnosis?
I would love to hear your story.

Watch Alero share her story on Faith

HOPE “An Easter Gift”

“ As long as you feel pain, you’re still alive. As long as you make mistakes, you’re still human. And as long as you keep trying, there’s still hope.” 

Susan Gale
How do you find hope when you become an exclusive member of a club you would rather not belong to?
I had to find a way to remain hopeful on a daily basis.  It suddenly dawned on me that there is a way to remain hopeful despite the odds.

Positive attitude

When I wake up in the morning, I instinctively open the curtains and see what the weather is like outside. Even though I do not have control over the weather out there, the disposition of the weather can influence the way I feel.
My ritual in the morning is to put the radio on, listen to some humour and good music and dance around the room so I feel energised and happy. If it is raining, snowing, windy, sunny  or all of the above, I will dress appropriately before I leave home. What I try to avoid is to let something that I do not have control over i.e. the weather dictate the way I  feel.  I consciously choose the attitude with which I embrace each day.
www.thrivingbeyondtbc.org

Finding meaning 

Hope enables me to find meaning that transcends my day to day challenges.
I find joy in giving back to the community and I have built my hope around it. A hope of a retreat where cancer survivors can have peer to peer support and have a set of tools made available to them to face their unique challenges. A place where they learn how to feel good about themselves  again. A community within which they can find help on their thriving journey. Having that hope is what keeps me going !

Keep trying 

Whatever you do, never give up and keep trying!

I would love you to share your stories of hope.

Watch Alero share her story of hope

Alero’s Thriving Blog – Psychology of cancer survivors

Alero's Thrivng Blog - Psychology of cancer survivors

Psychology of cancer survivors

During my cancer journey I had several overwhelming uncontrollable worries and fears.

The fear of dying and not seeing my only child and son turn 21. The fear of losing my memory during my chemotherapy sessions and developing chemo brain.

The fear of not being financially independent and having to depend on the generosity of the welfare state, family and friends.

Each fear was so real to me. Of all the fears and worries, only one really happened and that was being financially dependent on the welfare state and others for their generosity.

In my book ‘My Cancer Has Many Faces’ I detail how difficult that financial journey was for me. It took me to the depths of despair, to dark places I would rather not remember. However, I picked myself up and began to repair the financial damage that had been created whilst I was not in a position to earn a living.

How many times have we heard the saying ‘money is not everything? Whilst, this may sound true, how come the most important aspects of our lives and human survival namely health, food and shelter are all governed by money?

So who came up with the brilliant saying money is not everything when a cancer diagnosis has made sufferers and their families bankrupt or financially lacking in order to pay for treatment or just stay home to recover?

Can you tell my our greatest fear and how you have been able to overcome?

 

www.thrivingbeyondtbc.org

 

PAST BLOGS

Alero’s Thriving Blog – Reinvention

Reinvention

In my last blog I talked about my fear or worry of not being financially independent after a cancer diagnosis, treatment and recovery.

It has led me to discuss the meaning of paid work and being/becoming an entrepreneur. Whilst being financially independent is a nice place to be, what compromises do we have to make or are acceptable without affecting our mental and physical health?

After my cancer diagnosis treatment and recovery, I changed as a person. My values changed. My outlook about life changed. I became extremely passionate about helping cancer survivors / carers or anyone remotely concerned or connected to cancer.

I stated volunteering for a number of years, until, I began to have volunteer fatigue. How could I be volunteering, when I could not keep up with paying my bills?

I had to revert to what work I knew. Bills had to be paid. It was a no brainer.

Reinventing myself full time had to become a hobby in the first instance. It occurred to me, the process of reinventing oneself and following one's passion is not as easy as one thinks. It can become a silent challenge.

I would love to hear from you if you have been able to make the transition from being a paid employee to becoming self-employed entrepreneur. Or if you have tried, but, have had to return to being a paid employee.

Has this been the case for you?

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Alero’s Thriving Blog – Thriving Beyond Cancer

Thriving Beyond Cancer

One of the questions I get frequently asked “why have I decided to focus on thriving beyond cancer?”

After I was diagnosed with cancer, after treatment, and life returning to some form on normalcy, I began looking for the true meaning of normalcy. What would true normalcy look like for me? My journey robbed me of virtually everything I once knew, of everything I thought I was and everything I owned.

However, I slowly began to rebuild a new life to a certain extent. I had to start from rock bottom, shedding some of my old perceptions about who I was, I had to give up my old dreams in order to leave room for new dreams.

Slowly my life began to take a new form, in my thoughts, words and deeds.

Employment, I had to start from bottom up taking severe pay cuts, just in order to get back into the work place. I took up a lot of voluntary work.

 

Spiritually, I regained my faith to a place that I had never experienced before.

Emotionally, I began to get stronger and less fragile, accepting and embracing my survivorship. As the years rolled by, I realized that my foundation was getting stronger and stronger. I was doing better in all aspects of my life,

At some point, I realized that I had begun to thrive and was no longer just surviving cancer.

Has this been the case for you? Please feel free to let me know your experience.

 

PAST BLOGS

Welcome to Thriving Beyond The Big C

Alero's thriving blog

www.thrivingbeyondtbc.org

Hello, welcome to my blog,

I'm really excited to have you share some of my experiences and hopefully they will be of help to you as this is now my passion.

Along the way I will always encourage you to give me some feedback as it helps me reach others with unique needs as we all do. I know first hand that it's not easy going through on your own. One of the most important lessons I learnt is to share. I've found that "Those who thrive are those who share", so feel free to jump right in and let the "thriving begin'.

Dec 2018 - Thriving Beyond Cancer
Jan 2019 - Reinvention
Feb 2019  - Psychology of cancer survivors