It’s so interesting how even without thinking about it, we judge. We judge how people look, what they may be wearing, driving, drinking, eating or a place they may be at. Even people who are least judgmental………JUDGE. Just human nature I think. I don’t even think most of us mean to. I’ve found over the past 6 months, I’ve been part of many peoples judgments and I’ve learned to just smile and know that they are honestly just ignorant about the situation, so why be upset, people generally mean well.
I have tried to be very open and honest about what I’ve gone through, since the day I found out I had breast cancer. When someone asks, I tell them what I can, or what I know and when someone has been genuinely interested, I share openly. I think lots of people don’t know lots of what I went through, or still go through is because they just don’t ask. Maybe they are afraid to, maybe it makes them nervous, maybe it’s too close to home for them, I don’t know….and that’s okay. Sometimes, I wish people would just call me and ask, or send me a private message……and there are some people who do…….and that means the world to me honestly. But usually people just “look” at me and since I “look good”, they think everything is fine.
I know that no journey is the same for anyone diagnosed with cancer and some people have had bad experiences with loved ones, family, friends or even themselves. One thing I know is that if you have never actually been diagnosed with cancer, it’s hard for you to understand. I can say this because I had loved ones who passed away from cancer and been diagnosed myself, so I have now seen and been on both sides. My brother passed away at age 8 from Leukemia, my Baba (Dads mom) from cancer, my Dad from cancer, my mom from cancer, and 2 great aunts from cancer. That’s a lot in one close family and I’m not including my aunt who had breast cancer and is currently doing great, Praise God!
I guess my p0int is that I watched people I loved suffer with different kinds of cancer. It was hard, draining, stressful, sad……so many things. In the end, I thought I understood or had some knowledge because my mom and dad went through it and I was there, but in reality, until you actually have someone tell you……..YOU HAVE CANCER…….it’s just so different. Being with someone and helping them through cancer and having been told you have it yourself is so very different, and I never would have guessed that.
The decisions you think you would make and the decisions you actually make can be so different. I would have told you a year ago that I would do everything entirely natural and I would never have a surgery. What I thought and once I prayed and what I received, were two totally different things, yet I have complete peace knowing, this was my path, even though it may not be someone elses.
I had lots of people judging me for my choices, because it wasn’t their choice. The people who gave opinions, had never even had cancer, but had known someone. Again I say, it’s not the same. I know people mean well, and that’s why I still have not taken offense to comments or some judgments. I would love for everyone to just stop and think before they offer up THEIR opinion to someone going through a hard time. If you are not going through it, you can’t truly understand as God calls each of us to a different path for His reasons and so that the end result will glorify our Lord and Savior, not us.
So, when people look at me and ask in a confused face, “You had breast cancer?” “oh, you don’t look like it” (while they immediately stare down at my chest and it makes me giggle every time!!!) I smile and say “YES” knowing that cancer is not something that you can see by looking at a person. Cancer is not on the outside that you can pick out a person and say “yep, they have cancer.” I have learned to take that reaction as a compliment and a chance to praise God for all the health and strength and comfort He has given me. I’m glad it shocks people to find out I had surgery 6 weeks ago……just goes to show that with a positive attitude and a strong faith in Jesus Christ, you can do ALL THINGS. Let’s show grace and kindness to everyone, and stop before we judge someone or something…….the world could use a lot more grace, but that’s just my humble opinion……hoping this post is taken as it is meant, to show we are all different and that’s okay, let’s just support and love each other, life is just too short not to.