*This post is sponsored by the American Cancer Society; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Cancer. I can’t think of a scarier word in the English language than cancer.
And what’s even scarier? Most of us have had some experience with it, or have been affected by it in some way, whether our own health, or the health of a loved one, friend, colleague, or neighbor. And in many instances, most of us know SEVERAL people who have/had Cancer! It’s unfortunate and especially that it is so widespread too.
The big C has always terrified me. I worshipped the sun and regularly visited tanning beds until I was in my mid-twenties when a close family friend was diagnosed with skin cancer. Now whenever I’m outdoors, I always wear sunscreen and a hat.
I’ve become vegan, I eat and live a very healthy lifestyle, exercising regularly to keep my health in check and cancer at bay. I meditate daily to help myself deal better with stress too. I do everything I can to keep myself as healthy as possible. But what I wasn’t expecting? A call from my parents in early fall 2014. My dad had prostate cancer. My heart immediately sank.
I tried to find my zen as all my regular meditation has taught me, but I was devastated. And worried. And scared. What if this was it for my dad? What would I do without the man who has been there for me every single time I needed him in my life. Through all my hard times, two divorces, leaving an abusive boyfriend, endless moves, letting me live with him several times when I was down and out on my luck. Offering support. Love. Even financial help when I needed it, including helping me to buy my first car and first home as a single woman.
I’m selfish. I’m thinking about what losing him would do to me. What is cancer doing to him?! How is he dealing with this! Are you ok dad? Are you worried? Are you scared? What are the treatment options? What are you going to pursue? You have to stay alive dad. Please. Beat. This. Dad.
My parents played it off cool, which is nothing less than I expect from the people who gave me my extremely laid back personality. They weren’t worried. At least they weren’t showing it. I called my sister. We were both frantic and in a tizzy. “They always make things seem better than they are so we won’t worry.” She exclaimed. She was right. Both my mom and dad have had a way of doing this in the past. “Pretending” dare I say, that things aren’t so serious. So we won’t lose sleep. So we won’t worry about them. Their loving sweet nature always comes through in times of stress, “Don’t worry honey” I can hear my mom say “everything will be alright. Things have a way of working out for the best.” What if dad dies?!! Is that what’s best!!!!??? I was angry.
I then turned to all sorts of online resources, where I always turn for answers instead of seeing an actual doctor. But to my relief, what I found was that of probably all the cancers. Prostate Cancer is luckily one of the easiest to beat, even without having to always turn to chemo. Thank god! I breathed a huge sigh of relief. My zen kicked in, everything is going to be ok. Dad is strong and healthy and still relatively young. Ok, maybe not a spring chicken, but this man could fight it if anyone could. I chose to find positivity and eat and breathe it for the next few days, sending out positive healthy energy to my dad.
Five years later, I’m so happy and thankful to report my dad is doing great. With medications and regular checkups, he is doing fantastic and seems to be fighting the good fight, and kicking Cancer’s butt! AND he was lucky enough to do it without using nasty chemo or radiation too.
I realize unfortunately, this is not the case for everyone. There are still plenty of others out there who need help. Through supporting organizations and initiatives that provide support and care through the cancer journey, we can all make an impact on ending cancer.
The American Cancer Society is a national health organization dedicated to eliminating cancer. They rely on fundraising for their mission and their Raise Your Way platform allows you to take anything you’re passionate about and turn it into a fundraiser so you can make an impact on the fight against cancer.
American Cancer’s Fundraising Platform, Raise Your Way, is fundraising that makes a big impact on the fight against cancer.
Turn your passion into a unique fundraiser with Raise Your Way!
How to do it? Anything from hosting a dinner party or backyard bbq, to organizing a marathon or 5k! Even simple everyday activities can be turned into purposeful fundraisings, like walking your dog, or going for a Bike Ride. Other great ideas are doing some Group Backyard Yoga, a Group Meditation, organizing a lovely summer Hike, or even a fun Paint Night! You can turn anything you’re passionate about in a fundraiser with Raise Your Way!
How I’m turning my passion into purpose:
I love to meditate and I’ve really gotten into it over the last 5 years. Since moving back to Utah, I’ve been looking for meditation classes to join and find a like-minded community with people who share the same passion.
Naturally, my idea to Raise Your Way – is through organizing a Group Meditation at my home. To attend I’ll have participants make a donation! I’m going to host some friends, family, and my community meditation group to meditation in my backyard – for a good cause!
How to get started:
To start my DIY fundraising, I made a quick visit to www.crowdrise.com/AmericanCancerSociety where I can easily set up and share my fundraiser!
It then gives you options where you’d like your fundraising to go. For this option, I decided to choose “where it will have the most impact.”
I then did a quick signup through my Facebook, titled my Campaign: “Meditation for Healing” and set a dollar amount goal of $1000. I quickly added my short campaign story for how I would do the fundraiser, it also gives you the option to choose a photo if you’d like, and that’s it! My fundraiser is ready to go! It took me less than 5 minutes to do! And I can easily share my fundraiser on social media too, to help spread the word and share the invites! Super Easy!
It’s so easy to get involved and super important too! American Cancer Society is a nationwide voluntary health organization dedicated to eliminating cancer! ACS attacks cancer from every angle, including raising funds for research, treatment, programs, and services. I personally love the Wellness House support group here in SLC, which helps support those battling Cancer. If you check your area, you’ll find tons of great support groups and options in your area for those fighting cancer too!
What passion would you turn into purpose? Let me know in the comments, I love hearing from you!