The pit in my Stomach?

Diary. June 5, 2018—-I have that pit in your stomach anxiety.

That feeling is related to a photo I posted on Instagram earlier this morning.

She was brave and strong and broken all at once. —Anna Funder

I took the above photo back in 2013 while going through chemotherapy.

Objectively speaking and from a photography perspective, I think it’s a good image.

In fact, It was the artist and documentarian in me that posted it.

But now, the woman and survivor in me is feeling vulnerable. I’m even somewhat embarrassed by it.

Why? I’m at my worst in this picture. Why in the world would I want to post it for all to see?

And what about my family? I wonder if it makes them feel bad to have to remedy it all. Will it change how others see me? My feelings about it is confusing to me.

I’m all about truth telling. I’m also the person who prides herself in gladly taking these kind of photos for other people. I do so with a sense of pride and honor.

I think what I’m feeling has to more to do with vulnerability than embarrassment. I keep reminding myself that so many other survivors do this. So it’s not like I’ve done anything that’s never been done before.

But still, my stomach is telling me otherwise.

The key note on this is that there are no rules, expectations or standards on how to proceed after an illness like cancer.

It’s up to each individual. So I think the best thing to do is to just wait and see how I feel tomorrow.

I’m feeling tired now so I’ll leave it at that for now.

ps. my toe keeps twitching.

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Skin Cancer Awareness

Hello everyone. It’s Saturday June 2, 2018—I hope this finds you somewhere breathing in peace and happiness.

If you’ve been following me then you know I’m working on consistent writing, and posting. This week, my post is coming to you a day later than I planned. But as they say, better late than never. And I’m okay with that.

It’s hard to believe that we’re already in the month of June. Before June slips into July, I wanna take a little time to talk with you about skin cancer.

In case you didn’t know, May was skin cancer awareness month. But since cancer doesn’t need an occasion to strike I think anytime is a good time to talk prevention.

As a breast cancer survivor I know how scary and painful cancer is. So the way I see it, the only option we have is prevention.

Prevention is your best defense!

I know there are some of you who may be thinking “Sunscreen is an extra step I don’t need” OR “A tan makes me look and feel healthy and sexy.”

I get it! It’s bathing suit season. We all want to look and feel our best. I also know that a tan can improve our appearance in the same way that foundation does. A tan is a cover up that goes a long way.

But, a tan does not equal healthy.  Let’s say that again, together; A tan does not equal healthy. Here’s what the FDA had to say about tanning:

There is no such thing as a safe tan. The increase in skin pigment, called melanin, which causes the tan color change in your skin is a sign of damage.

Evidence suggests that tanning greatly increases your risk of developing skin cancer. And, contrary to popular belief, getting a tan will not protect your skin from sunburn or other skin damage.

Additionally, premature aging is a long-term side effect of UV exposure, meaning early signs of aging may not show up on your skin until many years after you’ve had a sunburn or suntan. Avoiding UV exposure is essential to maintaining healthy skin.

Did you know?

Cataracts are one form of eye damage that research has shown may increase with UV exposure. Cataracts can cause clouding of the natural lens of the eye meaning decreased vision and possible blindness..

Other types of eye damage include cancer around the eyes, Macular Degeneration and irregular tissue growth that can block vision (Pterygium).

So what’s a girl supposed to do?

Fake it. Use self tanner. There are so many on the market now that it doesn’t make sense to lay out and wait for the color to come. You can even find organic and all natural tanners. Or, you could go to a professional sprayer if you’d prefer.

Consider UV clothing and hats. I predict UV clothing will be the next big thing. I’m waiting for Target to partner with some cool brand. If it happens I’ll let you know.

SPF and shade. Use SPF everywhere! Slather this baby on from head-to-toe. Even under your clothes and don’t forget the back of your neck. I recommend using a separate one daily for your face, as well. Here’s a few of my favorite options. One is chemical free, one is not.

For over the counter options Good Housekeeping compiled a great list here. 

Do you have a favorite SPF product?

The Challenges of Blogging: Comparing Myself to Others

Hello! It’s Friday, May 17, 2018—IF you’ve read my last entry on the The Challenges of Blogging you know I’m a work in progress. In that post I confessed that my to-do list often gets in the way of my writing.

“At times, I fool myself into believing that I can do one chore and stop there. But in reality, one chore leads to another and another and the next thing I know, I’m behind in my writing.”

TODAY, I’m talking about how I’m trying to break the habit of comparing my blogging abilities (and blog design) to other more established bloggers.

Now, if we’re being honest here (and I hope we are) I don’t think there’s anyone here who hasn’t been guilty of comparing their work to someone else’s, especially you ladies.

It doesn’t matter what we do, as women, we are quick to compare ourselves to others.

In the blogosphere comparison is easy to get caught up in because we have so much to stack up to. Everyone from celebrities to children have gotten in on blogging.

A few weeks ago, I stumbled across an interesting blog authored by a little girl (I can’t remember the name now) but her blogging abilities made me feel “uber” inadequate (laugh).

Those little ones are born with the technology skills no other generation has had.

And as for those celebrity bloggers; well, they’re hiring a team of people to write, edit, post, design and market.

Good points to keep in mind when we feel compelled (by we, I mean, me) to compare ourselves to others.

There’s a lot of blogs out here. They are pretty and fluffy and they depict the perfect lifestyle.

While the icing and bling of the web can be distracting for me and even blinding in some cases, my goal is to continue to stay true to my vision.


Be true to yourself and your dreams

–Lara Prescott


 

My solution: Silence the blogs and people that divert my attention. Since I know that comparison is self-sabotaging behavior I’m working on drowning out the noise.

I’m not doing this with every pretty blog that comes along, because I want to learn from my peers.

But, I’m selective with who I let into my peripheral. I don’t want someone else’s voice and vision to take over my creative thoughts.

In my next post on The Challenges of Blogging I’ll let you know how I”m doing and I’ll  share with you some other things I’m learning. For now, though, I continue to work on consistent writing (and posting) and this whole comparison thing.

How do YOU stay true to yourself when it comes to your work and art? Please share with me in the comment section.

A Few Nice Gift Ideas

It’s Monday May 7, 2018—IF you happen to be on the hunt for a last-minute gift or two, you might like a few of my faves.

Continue reading “A Few Nice Gift Ideas”