One More Step
‘Courage is not having the strength to go on; it is going on when you don’t have the strength.’ …Theodore Roosevelt
This quote brings back vivid memories for me and rings loud and true in my Cancer experience.
Since my journey, numerous people have said how ‘brave’ or how ‘strong’ I must be to have endured surgeries and chemotherapy and testing, etc. I often hear, ‘Oh, I don’t think I could do it!’
The truth is, we are all built with Strength and Courage within us. It is there, waiting silently like a wallflower in life’s dance, leaning against the back wall of our soul…ready to step forward as soon as we make that ‘cry’ for help. I’m not talking about the help we need to unscrew the cap from a pickle jar, mind you…I’m talking about the primal call of surviving a moment, a breath, the call for help when you need the strength to raise your head from your pillow.
I often pulled myself up on that strength when I would make the every three week pilgrimage to my 5-hour chemotherapy infusions in the city. Train travel and subway rides necessitated countless steps through dank and dimly lit corridors, up and down stairways with my overnight bag. I had no core strength and yet I refused to ‘give in’ and take a cab or a car service or drive. The condition of my surrounding seemed to meld with my internal decline. I was barely able to propel myself forward, so I created a mantra of sorts, ‘One more step. Breathe. One more step. Breathe. One more step.’ In this way, I could actually ‘will’ my legs forward – slowly, deliberately. Motion was my only intention, in fact, some times I would close my eyes to focus. There was no thought, just breath and forward. I dug deep to find the place where one’s ‘Courage’ and ‘Strength’ lies: Will.
Needless to say the return trip was a different story and fodder for another post! Having been pumped with toxins the equivalent of a bottle and a half of wine, I needed major help finding my way back home! But I had an ‘angel’ with me and so yes, I am here today to share my tale and hopefully, give you some encouragement.
You can pull yourself through this, one of the most challenging times in your life. You can.
‘Breathe’ and take just ‘One more step.’