Dormant seasons can be especially hard and sometimes letting go can be even harder. I am struggling with this myself right now, if I’m being completely honest. I miss the old me. The me I was before breast cancer …
… Imagine if the caterpillar was never willing to let go of what it once was … if it was never willing to let go and trust in the dormant, changing season … it would never experience what it’s like to spread its wings and fly.
So, here’s to giving ourselves grace in challenging times. Here’s to letting go of what once was in order to make room for all that’s to come. Here’s to growing into everything we were meant to become … even if we don’t see the path in how we get there. Here’s to faith and hope, and personal growth. Here’s to the journey, yours and mine.
Breast Cancer I am 1 in 8. Blinded by the diagnosis, and still coming to terms with accepting this as my fate.
I could ask, “Why me?”, and go to a sad, dark place quite easily. But that is a question- that will never be answered. And staying there would rob me of my power- Indefinitely.
Instead- I choose positivity. I choose hope. I choose faith. I choose humor. I choose to find the things that make me feel happy, rather than focus only on all the difficulty. I choose gratitude. And I choose my attitude. Daily. And intentionally.
Breast Cancer treatment- is a BIG mountain to climb. A giant obstacle- directly in front of me. And I am facing it head on, and riding the waves of change, and the side effects of every treatment with as much grace as I can, to the best of my ability. Overcoming this- And sharing my story and my journey along the way- is part of my life destiny. And I believe that wholeheartedly.
Breast Cancer- Why me? I will never know the reason. And I will never ask. This is my life test, and I’ve been called to task. I am 1 in 8. And I will overcome. I will do my best to keep my chin up through this adversity, and my battle WILL be won.
Breast Cancer affects so many. It’s shocking when you’re in the thick of it. Giant hugs and honor to all who have been impacted – by this enormity. I stand among the countless women who have been down this road before me. And I look forward to standing with them at the finish line, as a survivor with a story.
This was written the day my chemo port was placed, and the night before my very first chemo treatment. I was terrified of all of the unknowns. I leaned into God at every scary turn and it was everything I needed and more – to get me through it. May this poem find those who need it and offer up all of the same to you in your time of need or for someone you love! Love, light and giant hugs to all going through their own life battles right now. May we become beacons of light in the eye of the storm we’re in, to give hope to all those who follow a similar life journey! 💗💗💗
Laughter is the best medicine – so don’t forget to laugh as often as possible to get those endorphins coming your way. Stay strong!
God’s grace- is a glorious place. A prayerful, and meditative state- filled with peace, unconditional love, and safe keeping. Releasing, And unleashing me from all that burdens my weary, and tethered mind- to fearful, and unkind thoughts- that slowly rise up to the tip top. Becoming louder And more prominent, and dominant than my faith. I pause in reflection- And feel God beckon me back- to trust in Him completely. To not fear this road I see in front of me. But to believe in Him, And to seek the beauty, amongst the rubble He has lovingly bestowed upon me. I must always retrace my steps- back to the quiet, prayerful space- when I feel lost- And He will come to greet me, and I must lean in with everything I am- to learn every lesson He is teaching me. I feel renewed by the power of faith He has restored within me. He refuses to give up on me. God’s grace is everything. Even through all of these life trials, and tribulations- I am humbled and blessed by the outpouring of God’s greatest kindnesses, and I am wholeheartedly, and profoundly gracious. I will do my very best to remain steadfast, and courageous- in the face of- my greatest challenges. God’s grace- Is the most glorious, and peaceful place. Where my tears of gratitude stream freely. Where my heart is overcome by His eternal, and everlasting love for me. God’s grace never ceases- to amaze me. His amazing grace always finds me in the dark, and reaches out with his undying love- to once again save me…
Growing up, I hated running – with a passion! Running around as a child always ended in wheezing and the need for my emergency inhaler in order to breathe normal again. Allergy and exercise induced asthma. No fun for anyone, but I felt lucky to have medicine to help me breathe when I couldn’t and panicky when an attack would come on and my inhaler wasn’t by my side.
Fast forward to age 36 and the year 2012. Married to my best friend and 2 kids under our belt! Our daughter, age 7 and son, age 4. August 9th of 2012 was our 19 week ultrasound to find out the gender of our 3rd surprise pregnancy. A difficult pregnancy from the start. We went as a family to our 19 week gender ultrasound ecstatic to find out if we were having a boy or a girl. Instead, we learned our baby no longer had a heartbeat. There are no words for the heartache and emptiness that followed. I delivered our son, Dason, born sleeping on August 10, 2012 at 4:30 pm.
I felt completely and utterly shattered. I felt like a failure. My body failed to keep him alive. A week later I was told by my midwife at my post birth follow up appointment (at the same place I learned of our baby’s passing) – that my blood pressure was still too high. She went on to say that because of this, I would most likely have high blood pressure issues for the rest of my life. And the best way to get over a loss is to have another baby. Those words still burn me deeply inside. They felt cold and heartless and without much compassion for the pain that had torn my heart completely in two.
Her words ate me alive —- but she doesn’t define what my future holds for me —- and I was now on a mission to prove her wrong. Her biting words lit a fire inside me that still burns with drive inside me to this very day.
At 6 weeks post birth, I was cleared for exercise and I immediately jumped in with both feet and joined a boot camp with my friends to begin strength training. I needed to take back control of my life. These same ladies began inviting me to the track afterwards to “run”. I thought they were absolutely crazy for wanting to do this, but the exercise was helping me battle my postpartum depression, so I relented and tagged along. Their fantastic company is the only thing that kept me going to that track. This is how running found me at age 36. Or jog/walking rather. Let’s be honest.
Running found me at one of the hardest times in my life and after about 6-8 weeks of jog/walking, I accidentally and unintentionally fell head over heals in love with running! Jogging and still being able to breathe was something I had never known before. It felt like some kind of super power that I had somehow and miraculously unleashed! It was pure adrenaline!!! How does the saying go??….Never say never!
Running became my time to cry, my time to pray and my time to be with my unborn son in spirit. And boy did I feel his spirit all around me along with God … each day carrying me through the flames to a brighter and healthier life, one step at a time. Running made me a better mom. It helped me to battle my depression, my anxiety and my stress. Running became everything I needed to get me through life and the very last thing in this world I ever expected to love. I ran for sanity, not vanity and in honor of our son. When I ran, my heart beat for him.
Today, I run for all of my loved ones who are heaven sent and for all those I love who remain here. My loved ones are the wings that continue giving flight to my life carrying me onward, upward and through it.
I run for sanity, not vanity. I run with purpose and intention. And I run for my mental health most of all. Running makes me feel alive and balanced and grateful for this life. I started running at 36, and at 45, I can honestly say that running is one of the very best things that has ever happened to me. My unborn son’s life and death awakened me and I share my story for anyone else it might help along the way. We weren’t meant to journey alone.
Tomorrow, Sunday, September 19, 2021, my husband and I will be running the Fall Equinox Half Marathon down Poudre Canyon wearing these shirts proudly. Thinking of and running with our loved ones in spirit for 13.1 beautiful miles. I’m nervous, excited and grateful to have another chance to conquer this run (or at least survive it) … because we still can. Our hearts will beat for them! Wish us luck!!! 💜🙏🏼💜🏃♀️
A ‘focus with intent’ body of work created to inspire, empower and invoke personal growth.
(Left to Right, Top to Bottom – “I Am Enough”, “I Am Passionate”, “I Am Healing”, “I Am Empowered”, “I Am Determined”, and “I Am Courageous”)
These 6 paintings are part of my “I AM” Series of acrylic works focusing with intent on positive self reinforcement words and the emotion behind the use of color and its impact. My hope is to empower and inspire change and acceptance within ourselves and celebrate the ‘human’ part of ourselves. We as humans are perfectly imperfect and a constant work in progress to better ourselves and learn from the lessons along the way.
What is one thing you would like to focus with intent on?
These original paintings 8×8 acrylic WILL BE AVAILABLE for purchase at this year’s Art in the Park at North Lake Park in Loveland, Colorado on Sat., Aug. 7th and Sun., Aug. 8th. at booth A-13. I will be there both days alongside my brother and my mom who each have their own art to show and sell. I LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOU THERE!
Two of my favorite things … nature and bright, happy colors! I have a bag of mini tree rounds and when our 2 year old tells me it’s time to ‘paint’ or ‘cu-yer’ (color) – she does her coloring and I paint my mini slices into these. Today the magnets arrived and the hand-painted mini tree slices came to life as really cool little magnets. I may not have loads of time to paint these days – but I get in what I can…when I can! These colors make my heart smile! And 2 year olds are the best!
Thank you from my heart to all who came out to Art in the Park over the weekend! It was an incredible show and weekend and I met so many amazing people. I genuinely and wholeheartedly loved getting to talk with everyone one on one. Seeing people connect to my art in such a positive way – seeing them smiling, excited and inspired…is priceless and a profound reminder to me that no matter how difficult this path may sometimes be, it is the path I was meant to be on. It’s who I am and what I was meant to do. Thank you all for inspiring me to want to create more and more art. I can’t wait to get back in my studio because of you.Thank you from my heart! Truly!💜
Our sweet baby,
Dason Albert Childers
Born sleeping on August 10, 2012
(19 weeks gestation)
A HUGE surprise, my number three.
So caught off guard, so meant to be.
Alive and well at 16 weeks.
The beautiful life inside of me.
My most difficult pregnancy, age 36.
Early hypertension, a dirty rotten trick.
Placed on powerful meds – a doctor’s fix.
I worried terribly about the strength of it.
Our sweet baby died around 17 weeks,
But we wouldn’t find out until week 19.
My husband, myself, my mom and both of our kids-
Watching the ultrasound to see what gender our baby is.
The technician’s face changed as she studied the screen.
I watched her intently wondering what it might mean.
The words that came out when she finally spoke-
Made my heart stop. The shock stuck in my throat.
Should your kids step out while I deliver the news?
Was the question she asked us and we were to choose.
Toby asked if it was bad and she said that it was.
Regretfully, I decided she would first tell just us.
So both kids stepped out of the room with my mom-
When the door finally closed came the drop of a bomb.
I can’t find a heartbeat – your baby has died.
Toby and I embraced tight – while both of us cried.
As we hugged and sobbed, I couldn’t seem to breathe-
The beautiful life I carried had died inside of me.
We were led down the hall to a room to grieve.
A nurse held my hand tight as she walked with me.
The midwife stepped in and quietly sat down.
Her face so somber, her eyes a deep, dark brown.
She was searching my face for the words she might say-
The tears flooded my eyes, I couldn’t wipe them away.
She spoke softly and quietly, in the gentlest of ways-
“I’m so sorry this has happened, and it’s not okay.”
The words somehow escaped me, both audible and clear.
What do we do now and where do we go from here?
I could deliver my baby and they would induce me-
Or my only other option, a procedure called a D&E.
For me the answer was instant – it came from my heart.
I would honor the life within me by doing my part.
I’d deliver my baby, go through the pain so I could heal.
I’d be fully present and not so numb that I wouldn’t feel.
It was decided and arranged for the very next day.
And I closed my eyes tightly wishing this would all melt away.
Then suddenly I longed to have my children at my side.
I ached for their presence and to look into their eyes.
I sobbed out the news as they stepped through the door.
Kaia burst into tears and cried, it rocked her to the core.
We held our children tight to comfort them in their grief.
My mom knelt down and together we mourned – in total disbelief.
My dad arrived to be with us as we began to sort things through.
The kids would spend the night with them, in the morning I’d be induced.
A sleepless night with unchartered waters that lie anxiously just ahead.
I began mentally preparing to give birth to our sweet little baby – born dead.
With but a wink of sleep, the next morning came. It had arrived all too soon.
Our nightmare began unfolding as we checked in and were taken to our room.
I remember shivering so hard from the cold and sobbing as I stripped down.
Everything familiar and suddenly dreadful as Toby helped me into my gown.
I climbed into the bed prepared for delivery and settled my nerves as I wept.
Toby was my strength, loving and supporting me; my side he never left.
Induced around 9:30 a.m., the beginning of a long and heartwrenching day.
Around 2 p.m. my labor progressed, our sweet baby was now on the way.
Dason Albert Childers was born sleeping at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, August 10, 2012.
Our beautiful baby boy, now our angel up in heaven and in our hearts forever held.