So there I was, a vibrant 20-something who had just been giving a stage 2 breast cancer diagnoses. I had to come face-to-face with the fact that my once beautiful, untainted, fit body may become marred with war scars. At my core I could feel an overwhelming feeling of disgust. I was disgusted with the diagnoses, I was disgusted with how I felt, and I was disgusted of what my physical outcome could be. I would troll the timelines of those currently battling breast cancer and saw how ugly of a disease it could be. I looked at my long and full hair and wondered how I would feel without it. I thought I would be devastated, ugly, and far from beautiful. God reminded me that his glory didn’t rest in my hair but it rested on the inside of me. I knew that this would be one of the most difficult battles I would ever have to face. Little did I know, my most difficult battle would become my most beautiful one. Yes, enduring cancer was not an easy feat but I am grateful that God chose me to go through it. There is something about losing everything you think makes you beautiful that forces you to discover what true beauty really is. This ugly place in my life taught me so much about life, love, and peace. Here are my takeaways from enduring cancer:
1. The ugliest things can produce the most beautiful things: After my fight, I came out more confident and beautiful than EVER. I learned to love myself and became comfortable with being alone. I saw areas in my life where I needed to become better as a person and I got the time to work on it.
2. You control how people speak to you and about you: From the day I was diagnosed until this present day I am very careful about the words I use and how others address me. I truly believe that our perspective can change our position. In my case, I came out cancer free- Thank you Jesus!!!
3. Tribulations tests the strength of bonds: When you are facing something as serious as cancer, you learn who your true friends are. Now, you can’t really hang out or give advice because you’re more concerned with living. I will never forget the ones who showed up when the chips were down.
4. Beautiful things always start off ugly! Yes, this is true. Diamonds, gold, butterflies, flowers, and pearls all go through processes and are found in the ugliest of places. The way it looks is not how it ends up.
God has allowed me to come out of this process more in love with my body and who he is. This weekend, I get to share with many the beauty that God showed me while enduring the ugly face of cancer. Beauty for ashes now has become a devotional book infused with poetry that speaks to times I’ve felt inadequate or un-pretty, and how God uses it all for his glory. The book will be available on Amazon and Amazon Kindle this Saturday.