Tag Archive | cancer

A Heart of Love

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“One of the hardest things in life is having works in your heart that you can’t utter.”  – James Earl Jones

 

Tonight I received a text relaying some news that was not easy to receive.     Life stopped short for someone I knew, someone who lived in the moment, and someone who loved her daughter with all her heart and always showed a smile despite difficulty.   

Looking back on the moments I shared with this beautiful lady, I was in shock, unable to utter the words to describe how I felt.   I suddenly began to realize that I am heading into a new phase of life.  A phase in which people will leave me, life is flying by.

I look back on all of the phases in my life, phases as a child, where I couldn’t wait for the school year to end.  The school year would turtle by but then the summer would flash by in a blink of an eye.  As I began university, I couldn’t wait to finish so I could begin my ideal life.  Then the next phases were marriage, kids, a working career, death of grandparents – and before I knew it, there was a women looking back at me that had aged so quickly.  As I look in the mirror, the woman looking back is entering her 40s and I gaze in complete disbelief of how quickly life has gone by.

Through this journey of life, we all have a story to share.  Each story cannot be compared.   There are moments of complete gratification and then moments that hurt so deeply, that the words cannot describe the feelings.  But a question I ponder as I look back in time, what gets us through it all??

I will tell you LOVE.

Love – A four letter word that can push us forward and bring strength to every situation.       It is that simple.

Love for self allows us to give grace for ourselves when we fall.

Love for others allows us to sympathize, identify with, gives us compassion and understanding of the human condition.

Love for our family pushes us through the times where we feel we can’t take that next step forward.

Love for our children drives us to be more and to show adversity in the face of pain.   This love runs through every inch of our souls.

Love for our significant other or spouse, helps us to feel strong when we are weak, and equally bares the burdens we may feel at times.

Love for the Source beyond us.   Knowing that there is something out there (God for me) that is guiding us, directing us on our path and reassuring us along the way.

Love pushes us forward, ushers us in the direction we need to go.     In all of the moments, LOVE is a source that we need to draw from and leverage.   If love can be our navigator, we can always take any step we need to in the right direction.

Today I pause for the love of a friend that smiled every time you saw her, and showed strength.  Moments and time are so precious.   I know she will be one of the most beautiful angels in heaven with her beautiful red hair.

May you pause today and concentrate on the love you have for someone else, and reflect on how fortunate we all are able to experience love in this life.

Dear Lord God, thank-you so much for giving me a heart that feels deeply.  Thank-you for allowing me to reflect on my blessings today.    I pray for those who are going through difficulty and loss, may you bring them sunshine through the rain.  In Jesus Name Amen

Be blessed

Vanessa

We are here today, gone tomorrow

our days are numbered

Over the past year I have seen a man fight for his life who has only had two years to see his child smile, I have seen a little boy the same age as mine fight for his life, and one lose his life.   These moments are tough for all of us, losing someone in our lives can be difficult and seems so unfair. These moments rock me to the core.   I just want to take all of the pain away, but that is not my job. Lean not on your own understanding. That is the voice that keeps coming to mind. My understanding does not see the full picture or plan, and sometimes miracles happen and other times this is all part a plan that we will only understand when we leave this world.  

I had moments where I did not understand the plan until much later and perhaps more is to come.  

When I fractured my neck, laying in a bed with my dad, brother and husband around me with a priest praying that I will be able to walk and to see my children again.   Three years later I am walking, and have a new normal and have a perspective that I am so thankful for.

Or the moment when I laid my head on my grandfather’s chest and heard his last heartbeat.  Letting go was difficult, but when one life passed another was given (the next day I found out I was pregnant with our second son).

Seeing my mother in pain, and wondering what was next.  Prayer, thanksgiving and petition make the difference.

But I will tell you something, these moments although frightening, and fear of the unknown rose up in my soul, I chose to lift up my worries and pray.   God is in control and I am so thankful for God showing me a different perspective in the pain.     All things in this life are for good. Sometimes it is hard to believe or difficult to see when your eyes are blurred by what is right in front of you.

The lovely web of life teaches us as we experience the moments that take our breath away.   We adjust and change the lens we look through, and we begin to ponder more about life and the moments.    

Life is short, and our time is numbered.   The bible clearly lays this out, and it also helps direct us on where we choose to focus our time and energy.  

Many times I hear people say “when I am retired I plan to travel”, or “when things are less busy we will get together”, or “things will get easier once we are past this stage in our lives”.

Looking ahead and saying” I will when….” “When” may never come. We are here today and gone tomorrow.

We need to focus on the now, make the most of our time here.   This means, living for today, surrounding yourself with love, removing the negativity, and making a choice for the good. And yes there are days when the waves seem to be crashing over us; during these times you can choose focus on what is important. Love and spreading it everywhere.

You have a choice. Where do you choose to focus your time?   Heaven can be on earth… Let go of the fear and live for today.

Be blessed my friend,

Ness

Featured Guest – Heather Von St.James ~ a cancer survivor who beat the odds

Heather and Family GoofyWe all have one life to live, and the question is, how do you chose to live it?  I believe we go through the trials in this life to open up the possiblity of seeing life through a different lens.  We all have a choice as to what we see.

I have been blessed over the past couple of weeks to come across Heather.    Her story is no short of inspirational, and reveals the power of the human spirit.   Heather beat the odds when given only a few months left to live.  Heather was diagnosed with Mesothelioma.

Malignant mesothelioma is a  rare type of cancer that occurs in the thin layer of cells lining the body’s  internal organs, known as the mesothelium. There are three recognized types of  mesothelioma. Pleural mesothelioma  is the most common form of the disease, accounting for roughly 70% of cases, and  occurs in the lining of the lung known as the pleura. Peritoneal  mesothelioma occurs in the lining of the abdominal cavity, known as the  peritoneum and pericardial  mesothelioma originates in the pericardium, which lines the heart. Mesothelioma is caused by exposure to  asbestos and the inhalation of asbestos particles. In most cases, mesothelioma  symptoms will not appear in an individual exposed to asbestos until many  years after the exposure has occurred. Those with a past asbestos exposure  history experiencing symptoms should consult a physician with experience in  accurately diagnosing mesothelioma. The  earlier mesothelioma is diagnosed, the more likely it is to be caught at an  early stage. At earlier stages of mesothelioma progression, more treatment  options are available and oftentimes a better prognosis is given. Additional mesothelioma  information and statistics can be found in this section.

HeatherandLily2Heather’s story is certainly inspirational, and believing in the best is certainly one of her mantra’s.   Take some time to click on the link to her website and listen/watch the video, you will be amazed.   We have one life to live, and this story will change your perspective !

www.mesothelioma.com/heather/  Click the play button once you get there.

If you have a story of inspiration please email me @ nesschesters@gmail.com I would love to share it!  Sharing helps others.   May you be blessed!

~Ness

A Man Who Loves So Much – My Dad

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My dad…. Caring, loving, and gives his heart to every person he comes across.  He leads with his heart.    Over the years, as a family we have endured pain, but something always shines through – the love.

Family is everything…  That is what my dad has taught me.    My dad grew up with a single mom, he lost his father when he was 5 years old.  It is hard to imagine losing a father that young – the same age as my son Marcus.   Yet even though he went through this, he has become such an amazing father and granddaddy to his grandkids.

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My dad loves with his heart and soul.  

Thankful for it too….   He has passed it onto me too.    We love people, we love meeting them, learning about them, and helping them.    Although there have been times in my life where I have crawled into my shell, the core of me was always there.    I am so thankful to see this characteristic in my dad, and thankful he has passed it down to me.

My dad does everything he can for his family/friends and never asks for anything in return.   Over these past two years we have had some storms really hit us….

But I am so very thankful for the storms because there is always a rainbow after the rain. 

The other day my dad saw this photo at the cabin:

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There is no coincidence he witnessed it.  First of all, a rainbow signifies God’s promise to us – He will never flood the earth again…. But this picture, it has such significance to me.    A picture always has come into my mind over these past two years similar to this – a strong tree with a rainbow in the distance.  I have used this picture on the broken neck survivor support page on facebook, and then had a dear friend paint the picture for me in my house.

What it means to me is that although the storms of life come full force, God weathers the storm, He brings strength to the Tree (me and you) and there is always a rainbow after the rain.   There is always hope, love, and goodness to follow.   Always….

On this day, I truly believe God was saying to my dad “It will be ok son, goodness is going to come”.   It is no secret that my dear mother has had her struggle this past year – her large intestine being removed, almost losing her life after surgery, and having a ostomy, and just before the reconnection surgery finding out that she had breast cancer.   While it has been very difficult on her, there have been times where my dad has felt so helpless.   He internalizes – much like my brother, husband, and father in law…. Maybe it is a dad thing?  I don’t know.  But in those times, I know God was holding him, and helping me support him too.     So when dad saw this tree and rainbow the other day – I truly believe in my heart God was trying to reassure him.

Mom then  came outside to see and was completely amazed.  I asked her when she posted the photo on facebook – “what did you think of when you saw the rainbow and tree” and she said

“Dad saw it first, it’s beautiful,with promise for the future”.

Yes promise… for the future…. We don’t know exactly what that future holds but one thing is for sure – God is there and carrying us through.   He is reassuring us of that.

On fathers day this Sunday, I feel so very blessed.    I am so thankful for a dad that has always been there for me, supported me, saved me from myself, and was/is always my number one cheerleader.   I am sure that Jared feels exactly the same so I am saying this for both of us!

Here’s to you dad – We love you so much you fly high in the sky 🙂

My dad taught me how to live, love, fall and get back up.   He also taught me that it is ok to wear your heart on your sleeve, because chances are if you do, many will love you back in the same way. ~miss muffet

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The strongest woman I know – my mother

429059_10151400264470987_2109690330_nOver the course of the past 8 months our lives have taken on another journey.   This journey has spanned across our entire family (both sides).  But through it all, we have been thankful.    As time goes on I begin to realize that life is really about all of the moments you are thankful for.   If one choses to focus on gratitude, there is no room for fear.  There have been situations that I thought I would never experience, that have spiced up my life over the past couple of years….I am grateful for the experiences, the love, the laughter, and most of all the people in my life that I adore.   Thank-you God for these experiences and the love; and for teaching me to be thankful each and every day.       I am sharing this picture with all of you – it was taken tonight.   In my previous worklife, I was a hairdresser, and tonight for the first time, my mom and I shared a new experience.   Good-bye old, and in with the new – you look beautiful mama.  I adore you.

A Letter to My Mom

As a babe, I look up at my mom and see her blue eyes.

They are beautiful and bright.

The love radiates and flows.

A love that cannot be explained, unconditional.

A bond that is everlasting and shared by two.

Over the years, the eyes change – brought by love, hope, heart ache and pain.

The lines and creases begin to show.

The lines define the moments in time where there was much happiness and sometimes tears.

She is strength, she is life, she is warm, she is a fighter and she defines love.

She has helped me most to grow.

She has helped me through my life and my “lows”.

She feels my pain when I hurt, and over time as I grow, I feel her hurts too.

We are one; the bond can never be undone.

She healed my wounds when they were deep, she has whispered sweet words as a child to me when I sleep.

We share a bond, that is so strong.

All through the years, I know this much is true,  I have become the woman I am today because of you.

You are my mother – a women of strength, determination, living with your heart and soul.

I adore you.