Friday, May 16, 2008

G@rda and her art of positive thinking

I firmly believe that sometimes my path crosses with certain people for the sole purpose of me either to learn a lesson from or with them. And my 30 minutes chance meeting with G@rd@ became a light bulb moment for me.

I had gone to visit my friend Ev@ to touch base. Apparently she and some ladies had sewn a quilt for G@rda as soon as they heard that she was diagnosed with breast cancer and had opted for mastectomy. Apparently G@rda had made the decisions to ask for both breasts to me removed within 2 weeks of finding out that she had breast cancer.

I didn't know G@rda before but tagged along for moral support. Only to find out that it was I who was about to receive a life lesson from her.

She greeted us at the door with a smiley and cheerful voice. I didn't believe that this was a lady who had just been discharged from the hospital for 2 days after getting both her breasts removed. She welcomed all of us into the house and asked us to make ourselves comfortable. Ev@ and the ladies gave her the water-colour heart quilt and I could see that she was very touched.

Cheerfully she said, "I'm sure you all are curios and want to know all the gory details and I shall share them all with you."

When we asked her how she was doing, she answered very cheerfully, "Very well."

"You know, I was thinking that of all the parts of my body that I could lose, my breasts are the parts I don't mind losing. I don't need them. I'm glad its not my legs or my hands or my eyes. I didn't need my breasts. And I felt really glad about that."

"When i felt pain and was getting depressed then I told myself to imagine the other people in the hospital like me. I'm lucky that I only lost my breast, the poor man in the next room lost his leg."

"When I felt the pain was unbearable, I thought about the poor babies in the NICU in the hospital with all the tubes and everything. Then I felt much better. My pain is nothing compared to the pain they must be experiencing."

I just sat there in awe, at this woman who has nothing but positive things to say about her situation and her pain. There was no twinge of regret, or the why me, but rather of gratitude. Gratitude that she found the lump early. Gratitude that her operation went OK. Gratitude that she had good Doctors.

She told us that the lump was found on only one breast but she insisted that the Doctors removed both breasts and made decision within 2 weeks. She even insisted on going to the toilet herself after being roused from the operation rather than using the catheter. Within a few days she insisted on walking rather than being pushed in the wheel chair like an invalid.

Never have I met someone so strong both mentally and physically.

G@rda, thank you for the life lesson. I will keep myself positive and will always be grateful with what I have or even don't have. Whatever I think my problems may be, there are others whose problems are much bigger and more serious than mine.

Watching her, a tower of cheerfulness and strength, I am convinced, more than ever now, its always the mind over body. What the mind thinks, the body agrees.

Once again, I am humbled by the beautiful life lessons given to me.

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