Joy matters! Yet when diagnosed with breast cancer, it is the first feeling that flies out the window. Of course we aren’t joyful to have been diagnosed with breast cancer, but letting a diagnosis rob us long term from the feelings of joy is harmful to our health. When the feelings of shock, overwhelm, despair, bitterness, anger and fear dominate our thoughts, it can take over everything in life…. which is the very energy of what breast cancer can do… it can take over our joy and eventually spread and overtake one’s spirit.
Joy can be defined differently than happiness. For many of us, happiness is based on our circumstances and if life roles out in a way that pleases us… meaning something or someone will “bring” us happiness. This type of definition says happiness is a role of the dice, something external, and is outside our control.
However, joy blooms in spite of any circumstances. The energy of joy triggers the healthy endorphins and the healthy chemical responders that are vital for feeling alive…which is just the opposite of the energy of breast cancer.
When we plug into the energy of thriving, we plug into the energy of joy, which is the essence of our being, which is also the essence of healing. As cancer thriver Kris Carr points out, anxiety and stress are harmful to our health by weakening our cancer-fighting immune system.
Remember, thriving isn’t a destination, it isn’t a five-year mark in the journey, and it isn’t a declaration from a doctor. The energy of thriving is a source that we can gently connect to and cultivate from within in any moment we choose to tap in.
Underneath our despair and our depression lies our joy — it is there ready to spring forth when it can find an opening just like the wildflowers that we see blooming through the cracks of concrete.
Joy matters! The energy of joy is good medicine. Let the spirit of joy touch your life in some way, every day and to help you cope and move forward.
Do one thing every day that gives you joy, whether it’s sharing your smile with others or doing one random act of kindness or paying the bridge toll for the stranger in line behind you or secretly making a difference for someone else or painting or gardening or reading or meditating or cooking or whatever it is that you enjoy Joy…. It’s what’s the best of life is made of.