Yesterday was the day that my 15-year-old daughter and I had a very emotional talk about my journey with cancer. We shared, we cried, we hugged and we both got a deeper understanding of each other’s feelings and where everything is at, as we know it. I let Sivanna ask any questions about anything at all that she had. We both shared how we felt in March, along the way and now. It was an open, transparent conversation that unfolded perfectly and it prompted me to write this blog post that I have been meaning to write for quite some time.
It may in fact be the most important post, for me, that I will ever write as part of my writing legacy and on my journey with cancer.
What Is This Important Thing That I Speak of?
From day one on my journey which started with a trip to the emergency department on March 6 of 2021, I have felt this….
After I learned of my diagnosis of Stage 4 Uncurable Cancer, and after I processed it all, what I realized that I both needed and wanted most, was this:
Throughout it all, I want and have wanted from Day 1, is for my Husband to continue to be my Husband and for my Daughter to be my Daughter, and what I mean by this is that I needed them and still do, to be who they are in their roles in life. I want them both to be happy and doing what they love, working and attending school, engaging in life and doing the things that 15-year-olds and Dads enJOY doing!
There is no way I could handle everything being revolved around me and my cancer. And yesterday, Sivanna and I talked about this. I explained that this whole experience is new to me and I was learning and processing as I went along. What helped me most was that they are my rocks and they keep my spirit high when they are living THEIR lives to the fullest.
In retrospect, I am soooooo very glad that we did not sit down as a family in March and say something like “Okay family meeting. Mom’s got Stage 4 Incurable Cancer and then we would all be devasted and the world would start to revolve around me and my disease.I so did not want that so the way it rolled was perfect.
As my favorite Doctor says “This experiment has never been done before”. This means we don’t know how this will unfold for me given MY body and what I am doing etc. So we have all processed and dealt with this as we have gone along and I feel it has been the best way to handle it, for us anyways. It has allowed life to go on because it does! Life goes on no matter what is happening and I want my peeps to be in JOY! I know we all have to let our feelings express themselves but we don’t need to become obsessed with the disease. The disease takes away enough on its own.
I explained to Sivanna that I NEVER want her to have any regrets, now or in the future. For example, I said maybe we talk about spending time together and you tell me that you are chilling and watching TikTok videos. I say “Great!” That is what my daughter is enJOYing… just being her 15-year old self!
I have no NEED for having to spend time together for the sake of just thinking we should. I also shared that if she is doing something that she enJOYs and if a thought strikes her like “OMG my Mom has cancer!”and thinking she should be sad, to stop and say “No it’s okay for me to be happy right now”. Now my friends this is what I want the most for my daughter and all of those who love me.
One of The Hardest Things About Cancer
One of the hardest parts about cancer is telling those you love. It took me a long time to spill the beans to everyone and for some, it was through a blog post. I can tell you that I can still see the look in the eyes of everyone that I told in person and those are the hardest conversations I ever had in my entire life! It had to be done in stages because it is just too painful to see the pain in others and to hear it in their voices. This disease affects everyone in your circle, it is not a stand-alone thing.
So to all of you reading this today or in the future, no matter what turn life throws you, make a choice. Choose not to let it become your life. Try not to let it consume the life and happiness of everyone around you. It really is much easier this way, I promise.
And as always and in all ways, I love you all!
And if you would like to learn about my last wish and legacy you can do so here:
Please note that this blog post although updated was written in January of 2021, 3 months before my cancer diagnosis.
I am writing this blog post more for me so I can remember something that moved me deeply yesterday, but hey if you are here and want to read along, feel free.
So here it is……. Yesterday I was driving by a funeral home and saw the cars outside. It made me wonder, because of the time of day, if they were having a luncheon about that time. I started thinking about how I love little tea sandwiches. I always have. I can pass on the desserts but the little sandwiches I have a hard time saying No to :-).
My spouse also knows this and we have often talked about how there will be little sandwiches at my funeral. 🙂 I started to think about this and in one brief moment in time while pondering these little sandwiches, I had an epiphany!
Life will go on and it will happen quickly! I saw the people say goodbye to me, say some nice words, eat little sandwiches, sip on coffee and tea and enJOY some desserts and then hop in their cars and go back to work, to their homes, to their life. It will go on as it always does.
I may not be conveying what I feel here but that’s okay because I get it and I did mention this blog post was more for me to remember the moment from yesterday’s drive by the funeral home. 🙂
What do I take from this?The Gems!
. Here are the gems! (And sidenote I am rereading this on January 26, 2022, nearly 11 months after my Stage IV Cancer Diagnosis and I wouldn’t change a thing! 🙂
. I think these are all great! 🙂
. life is short so make the moments matter and the moments count
. forgive quickly and often
. look at everything and every experience as though it were both the first and last time you will feel that, experience that, or see that
. eat the chocolate! (and the little sammies off course) 🙂
. appreciate each and everyday for the gift that it is, our days are numbered and we all know it… it’s realizing it that matters most
. throw FEAR out the window and tell it you never want to see it again! Live fearlessly
and in JOY!
. be as much YOU as you can! Authentic, Real, Raw in all your imperfection which is perfect!
. be FREE…………….
Maggie Holbik.com is lover of life who believes that death can teach us a lot about life and that the circle of life is precious and sacred and is denied to many… she is passionate about helping people to find the JOY in their life and to see the beauty all around that is waiting for eyes to witness it and hearts to appreciate it.
Many of you know that I love little tea sandwiches. These sandwiches come by many names. Funeral Sandwiches I am guessing is probably the second most popular to ‘Tea Sandwiches’. Call them what you will, just don’t call me late for the sandwiches! 🙂 I can skip the desserts but bring on the sandwiches! Nom Nom.
I had recently made a post on FB about my love of these adorable morsels and look what that law of attraction led to! Complete with the pickle center piece! 🙂
I Am So Loved
So on this past Sunday my sister Barb called me asking if she could drop off a tray of goodies for me. It turns out she has a group of friends who have gotten together for years on and off and call themselves the DMACS. They have a mascot and everything. 🙂 They have been meeting since 1996. You would have to ask them what the DMACS means but whatever they do it sounds like they get together and support each other in life and do nice things like making sandwiches like these. And they all have their specialty sandwich. Now how cool is that?
And I know that these sandwiches were indeed made with LOVE!
I also got these!
Anyhow this was such a nice treat for me! I had been dreaming (seriously) of little sandwiches like these for the past several weeks! I think a lot about food these days. It is one of the JOYs that I have left, even if it is just thinking and dreaming about it (I don’t always have an appetite even if I want to 🙂 )
I am so glad also that I am enJOYing these sammies from the comfort of my home and not at a funeral, especially mine ha ha! I am having my own little sandwich fest here!
Anyhow, thank you to all of the beautiful ladies who did this! It means more than you will ever know. It truly is ‘more than a sandwich’. It’s love, compassion, kindness, thoughtfulness, caring, and is what life is all about. Thank you once again.
So I had an early morning ultrasound at the hospital today. It was -28 degrees on a Sunday morning and my appointment was at 7 am. I originally tried to get this appointment changed to a different time because I always say, not another ‘red eye’, but I sucked it up and took it.
And WOW, what an awesome morning it was. I set my alarm at the little lake house for 6 am and I was actually awake early. And do you know why I was so happy this morning?
I felt good! My car started without being plugged in!
When I went outside to go to the car my breath was taken away by the stars in the sky! I was driving myself to my appointment. I was independent and healthy enough to do so!
My heated seat…. oh so Glorious!
On the way, I admired some Christmas lights that were still on at people’s houses along beautiful Lakeshore Drive.
When I got to the basically empty hospital, I saw this beautiful tree!
When I got up to the Diagnostic Imaging area, they were just opening the doors for the day. They were opening the doors for ME... to help me, to serve me and care for me…. for me. Wow. I was honored. All of these people along my journey were working to help and care for me and for others on this first Sunday in 2022.
I was in and out in no time.
You know there is something about the early mornings that makes them so special and serene.
Anyhow, thanks for listening to my ‘stream of gratitude’, and thank you to all of you who help me along my journey. I love you all!
Maggie, no matter the temptation, you no longer think or say, “I’m anxious,” “I’m hurt,” or “I’m angry.” Because each of these feelings are choices, that can be unchosen, instead of reinforced. And you will be amazed, The Universe This was my beautiful note from the Universe the other morning and I quite loved it.… Continue reading Why Not UNchoose?
Good morning everyone! I wanted to share with you how I felt when I read these words from Byron Katie. But before I do, just to share some good news, I figured out another technological hack and here is the audio link from SoundCloud which is exactly the same verbal content as this written blog… Continue reading The Past is Real or is it?