Silhouettes of people all talk fondly about a woman

They Will Speak Your Name

This may seem odd, but every once in a while when the world is quiet around me, I stop what I'm doing; and easily become overwhelmed with sadness. Feelings and thoughts tend to spiral a bit. But, before I can stop I enter into an all too familiar cycle of feeling sorry for myself. It wasn't like this before.

When the world is quiet around me...

Now, this process stimulates a set of behaviors that are too difficult to avoid. Can you guess where I'm heading? Close the laptop and shut the TV. And, there it is. I end up alone to examine my thoughts and my feelings. Every day things are placed aside and the focus changes to me and this life with cancer.


On reasonable days, I call upon everything learned in Gestalt training. Specifically, it is prudent to take these moments of sadness and treat them as opportunities.

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Being in touch with the whole of who you are, offers an opportunity to integrate thoughts with feelings. Therefore, when really good at this, it is possible to predict what thoughts lead you to feel sad. When it becomes more than you can handle, change your thoughts and you can change your feelings. Or simply get out of the chair and do some activity.


Remember our thoughts affect our feelings and our feelings affect our behavior. Be ready to welcome the power to control the rest of your life. It is possible to change your thinking just about anything. You may even find ways to busy your mind in some effective and even charitable ways.

It could be the fear of loss

Generally a happy person, I know my sadness is all about loss. When I feel sad, the pain of my grief has returned. I know the journey includes understanding the fear of loss. For me, I often do wonder, "Was I successful in making a positive difference in the life of others?" Somehow this has been an important value and driver in my life. Or is this my FOMO [Fear of Missing Out]? Will my grandchildren go on to attend college and make their own positive contributions? Will anyone wish I was still there?

How will I be remembered? Sure there were times when my passion for quality and perseverance could make me a difficult person.  Will my family know that my love for them was greater than all else? Will my grandchildren and their children know I was here?

A gift

As a person with cancer, I no longer feel loveable. My energy wanes and my hair is destined to be thin. It is truly a gift to be loved and accepted at this time of life. I may never know what people think and feel about me, however, it is time to acknowledge certain facts.  I know that for everything there is a season, a beginning, and an end. Therefore, I too will have an end and hope to goodness it is one of joy as I make my way through the life and death transition.

With joy, I offer this... 

Whether represented by an ancient Egyptian belief or in keeping with an African proverb, there is a belief that any one of us can be remembered within the hearts and minds of our people. I do hope that we all brought meaning to others. Perhaps, our family members, close colleagues, friends, and those who read our words, will speak our names. When they do, we too will continue to watch over them.

“Speak my name and I will live forever.”

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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