I’m living and loving and tasting life these days. While my body may be slower and my days shorter (due to more sleep), I’m no longer afraid. Instead, I feel blessed that I have learned much and loved more as a result of this cancer experience.The purpose of life, after all, is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experiences.
01 October 2011
Wow, it’s been such a long time since I posted on this blog. Many friends and family have mentioned it to me, some have even been a little scolding. However, all has been well, and I’ve become re-engaged into my more normal world, meaning I just haven’t made the time for this blog. But today I have a few things to share.
First, about my health – it’s good! I continue to battle side effects from the medicines I take, but who’s complaining. I don’t have cancer. Tolerating fatigue, pesky leg bones, some vision problems and dry mouth is nothing compared to cancer treatment. And with a few adjustments to my lifestyle, I’m tolerating all of them just fine.
Second, my girls are good. In fact, I am proud to share with you my oldest daughter Allyson’s recent accomplishment in the world of breast cancer advocacy. Last year after Little Rock’s Runway for a Cause, Allyson said to me, “I can do that in St. Louis.” And she did, and has been working on this event for over a year. Already a volunteer with the Siteman Cancer Center in STL, Allyson and her sorority sister Hannah Vargon presented the idea “Celebrate Style”, a high-energy fashion show to benefit their Young Women’s Breast Cancer Program. This inaugural event, held on Friday, September 16, welcomed over 200 guests in a night of connecting fashion and philanthropy in the ultimate celebration of survivorship. Here’s a photo of three generations of “Sells women” celebrating style and cancer survivorship. But more than anything, we were absolutely celebrating Allyson and her penchant for community service. Cousin Paula even flew in from San Antonio and attended with her daughter Cousin Casey who now lives in St. Louis. It was a very successful event, a wonderful weekend for sure.
Speaking of my cousin Paula Callaway, when we returned, I received an email from her about a plea from Women’s Health magazine asking breast cancer survivors to share their story. Paula encouraged me to send mine, so I did. And guess what – my story was selected and now I’m in it. Who would have ever thought I would be in a magazine about health. But I love this photo with my girls, and honored to be in this breast cancer feature with so many other strong women who are fighting the good fight. Thanks Paula! Here’s the online link. Also take a minute to read the other stories too. They are inspiring.
And finally, this coming Monday marks the launch of a new program at my beloved UAMS, at the Rockefeller Cancer Institute. Working with the leadership team and other volunteers at the Institute, we will bring enhanced patient support services that will address the emotional, physical and lifestyle changes associated with a cancer diagnosis. Classes for patients and caregivers, in addition to consultations with nutritionists, pharmacists and social workers are part of the program in development. Fighting cancer is multi-faceted, so it’s very exciting to work with a team of cancer specialists so dedicated to the whole person. More about this come Monday or Tuesday.
I’ll close with this quote from one of my favorite women in history – Eleanor Roosevelt. Indeed what a strong woman she was, a full of character and love for mankind.
What was it that Nietzsche said? What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger? Well, I am stronger, and more grateful. Thank you friends! Love you all . . .
Posted by Stacy Sells at 10:55 AM