Feel good Friday, and a true story.
When you finally manage to pull yourself through a really traumatic life experience or period of life, you have this moment of moral clarity where you just know what worked and why, what didn’t work and why, what you needed to do, and how you need to live. I made sure that I captured every bit of that before it faded in my early writing, because I never wanted to feel as hurt as I had been in my life ever again, and this was where my first major essay about cancer survivorship came from, “Steve Pake's Top 10 Guide to Surviving a Young Adult Cancer.” A dear and trusted friend that I had showed an early draft of this to was blown away, and encouraged me to be public with it and to find as broad of an audience as possible for my writing not just because of how powerful she felt it was, but because it applied not just to those facing cancer, but really anyone facing a painful or traumatic period of their lives. I was sure to take my friend’s advice.
My Insta friend Vince, and his wife, Aileen, are different kinds of survivors, and just the type of people that my friend had been referring to. It was so awesome to get such a wonderful shoutout from these friends across the pond upon their reaching a major milestone in their lives yesterday. It’s a wonderful feeling when you know that you’ve made a difference for others, and little do these friends of mine know just how much they’ve been helping me, as well. My family has once again been challenged in our lives this past summer, and as we’ve struggled to make sense of things all over again, all I’ve ever needed to do for inspiration and guidance is to look at these friends of mine, almost like a mirror image of my own family, as a reminder of what we’ve needed to KEEP doing.
Breathe, live well, be well, and never waste a day because life is so precious. Live the best possible lives that you can, without apology to anyone. Glad I was able to inspire, V&A. Congrats on your milestone, and thanks for inspiring right back!! Obviously our paths were meant to cross for a reason, and I’m glad that they have.