The c word again

I have a friend in her mid to late thirties who has stage 3 breast cancer.

The doctor she had presented her lump to almost two years ago told her she was fine and it was all in her head.

Told her she had PTSD and anxiety. Two years for the cancer to grow and spread, and now after fighting for all that time is finally receiving treatment.

Round after round of chemo and years of tamoxifen in order to keep her cancer free. If she survives.

Shes an amazing, beautiful woman that I carry so much respect for, and I will never be able to convey it in any way that makes any level of sense.

Anyways she posted yesterday on social media a statement about all of these people talking about hair. Which hairstyle? What colour? Etc. Obviously, shes going through chemo, had no hair to speak of and its stung her a bit (a lot)

And I started to reply, but my statement may not be appropriate for the thread, bit i still want to get it out.

So here goes.

“It is just hair. It comes and goes, and we tend as women and men to be told that our hair in part, defines us. Our looks, our jobs our clothing are the definition of who we are.

But when life strips us of these things we’re still there. Naked and raw.

Sometimes life is gentle about it, and sometimes she’s ruthless, but eventually we stand there, naked, among our peers but most importantly, in front of ourselves to see ourselves in full.. to observe what we truly value, and who we really are.

How we proceed in those days is what defines us.”

And she has done an incredible job of being. In all of these harsh moments, fear or not, she has stepped up and confronted what it is to be human every day.

All I can say is, shes remarkable.

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Beauty

There’s a constant flow of talk about looks.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

Beauty is only skin deep

Too fat, too thin, too tall, too short

Is it media? Commercialism?

We’re all barraged daily in regards to beauty, its definition, its value and the consequences of not fitting that ideal.

Eating disorders, clothing hoarding, personal hygiene products, ointments galore, plastic surgery from face to genitals, and financial hardship all to chase an ideal.

But the concept of ideal beauty shifts with the wind, differs between cultures, and varies through the ages for men and women alike.

And 99 percent of us never make the cut.

How many relationships with good People are damaged on a daily basis from our skewed value upon the looks of people?

How many housewives are torn down daily by their husbands offhand remarks of how this woman (who looks nothing like her) is hot and all the rest are disgusting… how many little girls question themselves for It?

How many men beat themselves up because they’re never going to be the next Brad Pitt? And how many think that is what women want in a man?

Our view of beauty is ugly, how we treat ourselves and other who aren’t and will never be a “10/10” is ugly. Our value in the superficial aspects of humanity, the stuff that never really lasts is ugly.

Very few him and can make a living with their looks. Looks may help in the short term, but, it’s the beauty of the mind, the sheer will, hard work and integrity of people that gives us our community, and our ability to move forward.

Its the beauty of countless people sacrificing their time, their careers, their ideals to help others, to rear children, to give back to their communities which is beautiful.

It’s the creators and builders and dreamers, the counselors and hope givers that give a sense of belonging and richness, merging purpose and hope, and the thought of more in life which is beautiful.

It’s the mundane that we love about each other. The mundane stuff in our loved ones lives that due to the nature of intimacy, that is truly beautiful. How our children sleep or have tiny gestures that are their own, how our spouse hums while washing the dishes, or how a parent or grandparent spins a tale or leaves an item of care. Just in case.

Those things, are vulnerability and earnestness and compassion and empathy, they are representations of someone allowing you into the deepest most untouched parts of themselves. And each person is different.

And truly beautiful.

Looks come and go, but the person inside is there, the impact they have on us is there, and lasting. Even if their name is lost in the sands of time, their impact will always move forward.

That is beautiful.

And you.. you are beautiful ❤

Potential

My greatest vulnerability is potential.

Potential in others, in humanity at large, and potential in individuals. 

Potential has caused me the most joy and pain. But pain mostly.

I see the potential in everyone I meet, the wonderous things they are capable of, and somehow blind myself to their incapability and the undercurrent of imperfection that flows through every human vein.

Believe me when I say if you and I were to meet I would be a cheerleader for you, ìn whatever it is you do. Not because I feel like I’ll get something out of it more than just seeing you become a whole human. 

The problem is, a cheerleader is only as good as the team theyre cheering for. And although there are many many teams that will succeed in one way or another, or even move to greatness, there are many many other teams that maybe need better coaches and better tools, or even the will to play. Potential or not. 

I look into my kids eyes and blindly see their potential and wonder who they’re going to be, and stop myself. I weep. It really doesn’t matter who they will be… it matters who they are now.

This is my pain. Many relationships that I’ve allowed to become toxic because I just want to help people in some way move forward and be the best they can. 

That’s not my job.

My job is to be there and encourage or save space. Counsel if requested. Nothing more. 

Potential is heaven and hell, merging together in a first burning chaotic mess. 

And it’s not my place to look into the future, even my own. 

 Potential is what I’m wired for, and I need to somehow remove that programming before my heart breaks further.