I made a new friend. Her name is Heather. She’s a mom, a wife, a WhenCrazyMeetsExhaustion follower, and a cancer survivor. When Heather shared her story with me, I immediately kicked my own ass for being a Debbie Downer. I had been wallowing in self pity because work is busy and I think my son is getting sick (again…), and I swear these teeth whitening toothpastes are a huge crock. Anyway, I believe that everything happens for a reason (coffee is the reason for the teeth. Sigh.) and there is certainly a reason why Heather and I have come together here in cyberspace. She is going to help us crush our fears.
Here’s an excerpt from Heather’s e-mail:
When (my daughter) was just 3 ½ months old, I was diagnosed with Mesothelioma; a rare type of cancer caused by asbestos exposure, which kills 90-95% of those who have it. After intense treatment and a long recovery, almost 7 years later I’m still here and cancer free! My journey through cancer was quite a terrifying one and I’d like to turn my struggles and obstacles into inspiration and hope for others. One of many things that came out of my battle with cancer is a holiday I created called Lungleavin Day. (February 2) is the anniversary of my surgery in which my entire left lung was removed. Lungleavin Day is a celebration of life and facing your fears. Each year we celebrate with nearly 100 loved ones. The idea of this day is for everyone to fill a blank plate with their fears and smash it into a bonfire at my Lungleavin Day party, symbolizing people throwing their fears to the fire. I also use Lungleavin day as a fundraiser for mesothelioma research.
Heather’s strength, sense of humor (Lungleavin Day–genius!!), and willingness to bare her soul make her a true inspiration to everyone, not just those struggling with disease or illness. I have quite a few fears that I’d like to smash into a thousand pieces, and I can’t think of a better way to ignore a day dedicated to an over-sized rat than by replacing it with a day dedicated to survival.
So, let’s do it! Throw a plate, smash a plate, burn a plate–do whatever it takes to sweep your fears aside and live life. If Heather can do it, what’s stopping us? Yellow teeth?
For more information about Heather and her anniversary, check her out here. You can keep track of the holiday festivities on her Facebook page, too. Celebrate with us, won’t you?
What a brave woman! Happy Lungleavin Day!