I saw a TV show recently where the hostess was asking the person she was interviewing what she would say if she could go back in time and give her younger self a pep talk. The idea being that we all gain wisdom along the path of life that could have been useful if only we’d possessed it at an earlier stage. In the context of the show I was watching, they were discussing men, and how great it would be if the 40-something woman could go back and tell her 20-something self which ones were worth pursuing and which ones would break your heart. It got me thinking.
What if I could go back and tell my pre-breast cancer self what I now think is important? What would I tell her? Have I learned anything that might be of value? My first inclination would be to tell her to run for her life. Since my breast cancer diagnosis was not something you can avoid like a bad boyfriend, I thought long and hard about what I really wanted to say. I kept coming back to wanting to tell her to appreciate every single day of good health you are given. I want to shout to her not to take it for granted and not to waste it worrying about things that truly don’t matter. I want to make her see how important the ones we love are, and how little control we have other than in terms of how we treat others. I want to tell her that her worst fears can be realized and she will still discover the beauty in herself and those around her. And finally, I want her to drink an original Orange Julius because they were REALLY good and I don’t think you can buy them anymore.
What would you say to your pre-breast cancer self?