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    6 years ago

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Special Edition: Cancer Awareness Month!

Weekly Update: This week was hard for me.  I continued to work out all week, but my nutrition remains 'off' due to some stress and anxiety.   And of course eating poorly, makes me tired which makes me want to eat more crummy foods!   The cycle is real, and I'm working hard to pull myself out of it.   This week I chose to not focus on ghe numbers but instead what I'm happy about.  I am so proud of myself for not giving up, not letting myself get frustrated and continuing to 'press play' regardless of how I feel emotionally.

I wanted to kick this week's entry off with a topic that is near and dear to my heart.  Cancer Prevention.  This one is a hard one for me, because cancer is actually the catalyst to all of my initial weight gain 25 years ago.

This photo was taken of me and my mom when I was around 9 years old.  My mother had survived breast cancer, chemo and remained an amazing mother along the way, but as a 7 year old when she was diagnosed, I had no idea how to handle the stress and changes in our house.

While it took a toll on my health, literally eating away my emotions, I also learned so many things from my mother. 

I learned the importance to have a FIGHT and never give up.

Several years before her diagnosis, my mom tried to tell the doctor something was wrong, but he didn't believe her.  She was too young.

But she kept fighting.   And finally by the age of 37, they conceded to a mammogram and biopsy, discovering that she was right, she did have cancer - she wasn't 'too young'.  She was 37.

My mom fought to be heard, and she fought for her life.   She fought to be a mother despite all the pain she must have been going through.  She fought, and she won.

Not all people, no matter how hard they fight, are that fortunate.  But I am grateful every day that my mother fought and won.

I could share hundreds of photos that would have never happened  had she not fought so hard - but this one says it all.  My mom made it through motherhood, and is now the most amazing Grandmother you'll ever meet.   And I am a better mother because of everything she has taught me in the past 25 years of her survival.

As a mother, this topic is so dear to my heart, and I wanted to share some tips that were shared with me from the The Mesothelioma + Asbestos Awareness Center around cancer prevention. The MAAC provides information and assistance to help individuals and families get through tough times with mesothelioma, an extremely rare cancer that is caused only by exposure to asbestos. While my immediate family was affected most by my mother's breast cancer, I have had dear friends and other relatives fight a similar fight with various other types of cancers, not all have been able to get to the other side.
Here is the checklist that was shared with me, but I would also like to note the importance of having CONFIDENCE in yourself, when you think something is 'off' - say something, and keep saying it until you are heard.   I have a very close friend, who 20 years after my mom's diagnosis went through almost the exact same thing - except her cancer was made more aggressive by the fact that she was pregnant and the hormones sped up the cancer growth.   My friend said something too, but she was 'too young', she was 29.    The greatest gift I could give her at the time, was my mom - my rock became HER rock too.   A mother of 2 daughters, just like my mom had been, my friend refused to give up and she is here, very much alive, 5 years later despite a very escalated stage of cancer.

In light of my discussion around motherhood, I wanted to share some healthy habits I partake in WITH my son, not only to make myself a more energetic and happier mom, but to make myself a mom who is alive for my son for as long as I can control.

Here we are 'planking' on the sled after building some snow men.  It brings me so much joy that my son sees anything fitness related and immediately tells me it's 'Mommy teaching class'.    Staying active can help combat so many things both mentally and physically. It's not about weight it's about life. 
Just for kicks, here is me this summer also planking - but on the water - it's not about 'grueling workouts in a gym' for me - or 'burning off the cake' - it's about FEELING GOOD, and having FUN and being silly.

We had a snow day this last week, and I was reminded of just how amazingly fortunate I am to be a mom.   Here we are, having lost power, after making a 'car' out of a giant box, some stickers, ribbons, feathers and pipe cleaners.

Food news is also 'team news' this week.   This is an awesome spread put on by my Teammate Katie.  Katie is my business partner, and close friend and has been with me since the beginning of our weight loss and coaching journeys.  Together, Katie and I have built a team of over 70 coaches who are all helping others along with leading healthy lives themselves.     This week was our first ever 'Team Beam Team Meeting' - we had some people remotely dial in via FaceTime, and many others in the room, and the energy was literally contagious. 

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