This morning, just a few minutes before 5, both kids were awake and bounding into our bed for a snuggle.  And I didn’t mind one bit.  In fact, it was probably one of the sweetest snuggles we’ve had.

Five years ago today, just before five, I snuck into each of their rooms to give them each one last kiss before heading down to the hospital for the surgery to remove my tumour.

I wasn’t sure that morning how I would be returning to them.

And this is how I did actually return to them . . .battered, bruised, but SO happy to be back with them in one piece with a good prognosis.

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As I look back on the last five years, I know, without a doubt that, I have returned to them in a way that is SO MUCH better than how I left them.  While this journey hasn’t been easy, I have come across some  of the most wonderful and amazing people that have taught me so much, and helped me along the way (I believe you all know who you are . . . THANK YOU.).

And as I reflect on it all, I can distill all that I have learned into this:

  1. Don’t rush through life.  We live in a time when there is always something more we could be doing, getting, becoming.  And it’s all to easy to get caught up in this endless cycle of trying for “more”.  We do it ourselves, and we do it to our children.  When I look back over the last five years, it’s not the activities my kids did that I look back on fondly – it’s the time we spent together – reading, cooking, playing, and even just snuggling.  What do you want to remember about your life right now five years from now?  Do more of that.
  2. It’s important to be strong.  Physically and emotionally.  Life can change at the drop of a hat.  We don’t know what we’ll be tasked with enduring.  Physical strength can help you weather the storm.  Emotional strength can help you survive with your marbles intact.  Get into the gym, do what you can, and get as strong as you can get.  That might mean getting out and walking.  It might mean challenging yourself to pick up a heavier weight.  Or it could be pushing yourself just a little bit harder in a workout class.  It’s a funny thing . . .but I’ve found that when I push myself harder physically, I get a little bit stronger emotionally too . ..  And the added benefit of physical and emotional strength . . . you’re less likely to fall ill.
  3. Don’t underestimate the power of food.  Food has the ability to heal, to strengthen, to soothe.  Food also has the power to cause illness and disease.  Choose the food you eat, and the food you feed your family wisely.

And on that note, I am off to make myself some breakfast and spend some more time with my two favourite goofballs before they head off to school, and I head off to the gym (like I said . . . it’s important to be strong!).

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