Bonjour Royal Friends!
When I was first diagnosed with breast cancer, I had a really tough time figuring out how to handle it. I was frightened that I would die, I was frightened that I would be disfigured, I was frightened that life as I knew it was over. Stress seemed to weave itself into every crevice of my life. I was tuned into a new frequency radio station, 101.CRY FM. Stress assaulted my mind like a prize fighter and I was no match. Stress was my new normal, it felt awful, and I knew I was going to have to do something about it. I also knew there was no one else who could solve this issue but Princess Diane von Brainisfried.
Living in this uncomfortable state of “how am I going to figure this out” reminded me of the time Howie and I went to dinner at an Italian restaurant with my college roomie and her husband. We ordered an array of luscious appetizers to share. The most sumptuous looking was the braised octopus, plated on a clean white dish, its shiny brown tentacles glistening, dolled up with lemons, capers and artfully sprinkled parsley bits. Even for a pescatarian like myself who is a hard core vegan wanna-be, this dish made me feel criminal. I just wanted to rip at it.
The discussion turned to animals and their feelings. I do believe animals have feelings. I’ve seen them play. I’ve seen them think and solve problems. I wouldn’t eat my dog, so I can’t bear to eat anything that is like my dog. My roomie said cows definitely have feelings. I know that fish have feelings too, and it is a divine compromise for me to eat them. My next iteration, I’ll do better. My roomie’s husband looked at the octopus dish and remarked that an octopus is very bright and is known as a problem solver. As a matter of fact, it is the best problem solver in the animal kingdom. This statement later got me to thinking: It may be a great problem solver, but I knew one problem it couldn’t solve.
Sometimes even the best and brightest of us problem solvers face something that seems insurmountable. But that doesn’t mean the problem is actually insurmountable. In the end, we are human, not cows or chickens, or octopi. We have the ability to solve problems if we throw some sustained thinking at them. And that’s what I did. I gave myself the grace of sustained thinking to come up with ideas and solutions to handling the stress of my new normal. It’s like pulling the thread on a ball of twine. You just start, and the rest of the twine starts to follow. But you have to give yourself that grace, and relax a little, trusting the answers will come.
My dear friends, my new book coming out very soon, Bonjour Breast Cancer—I’m Still Smiling! …wit, wisdom, and optimism for beating the breast cancer blues is filled with ideas and strategies for handling a palace pant load of stress, even the heavy kind when faced with a trauma like breast cancer. In the meantime, here’s one hot tip. Get some sleep! Your ability to draw on your brain power and resourcefulness is diminished if you are sleep deprived. And, as my mother and sister always told me, everything looks worse at night. I have found that to be true. Everything is more manageable with a good night sleep. Unless you’re an octopus. Which, if you are reading this, I must assume you are not.
Royally Yours & TTFN!
Bonjour! I’m Princess Diane Von Brainisfried™
Motivational Speaker. Certified Life Coach. Award-Winning Writer. Breast Cancer Survivor. Offering seminars and coaching using humor to inspire happiness.
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