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It was a year from her diagnosis to her death. Mom was a dynamic, classy, beautiful woman, always sharing her vibrant laughter and contagious smile. That’s was mom’s legacy

She and dad had been married since she was a teenager.They put their whole heart and soul into creating the life they dreamed of, and even though she was still young, they had planned to eventually retire and travel.

Cancer had a different plan.

Words from the heart of Dr. Steve Maraboli – Speaker, bestselling author, and Behavioral Science academic. His empowering and insightful words have been shared and published throughout the world in more than twenty-five languages. He has delivered his inspiring, entertaining, and unforgettable speeches in over thirty countries, earning numerous awards.

The Eighth Floor

Instead, we spent a year in and out of the hospital as she battled this unmerciful devil. Watching as it slowly and methodically consumed my 57-year-old mom and her future.

That year of hospital visits seemed like an entire lifetime.

That eighth floor would serve as the place she would come to inspire all of us with her grace, strength, courage and unconditional love.

Live On Your Own Terms

One day, mom taught us all such a great lesson: You win 100 percent of every fight you DON’T engage in. She decided that instead of losing the battle with cancer she would politely excuse herself from the process.

Mom decided that instead of dying on cancer’s terms, she would LIVE on her own.

What a beautiful day that was!

Keep It Positive

While the strength she showed during that year was nothing short of incredible and miraculous, it was her wisdom that would have the final say… and inspire us all.

Our last conversation was about what she wanted from me after she was gone. Among the simple things she wanted me to do she said, “I know you’ll give a good talk at my funeral, but I want you to make sure you keep it positive and talk about the blessings this cancer brought us.”

Sometimes it’s not what you GET for what you go through… it’s what you BECOME for it.

Thank You To Cancer

So I stood there, following the wishes of my mom, in the spirit of what Jesus taught and shared the blessings of the experience with a “thank you” to cancer.

“Thank you, cancer,

for inspiring us to spend more time with the amazing woman who brought us into this world,

for helping us see the importance of slowing down and not take any day for granted.

What We Learned

We learned so much about mom and grew a new respect for her, her life, her spirit — not only as a great mom, but as an amazing woman.

Thank you, cancer, for if it had not been for you, we may have never just sat with my mom, without distraction of TV, phone or computer. We may have never taken the time to just talk, look at pictures, talk about God, life, laugh, cry, share our victories and losses.

My brother, sister, and I would have never stepped up to consciously appreciate all our beautiful mother had done for us and our family.

Mom’s Legacy

Thank you, cancer, for inspiring everyone in my family to strengthen our bond with our wonderful mother… and bring forward our unspoken faith in God and his perfectly imperfect order.

Cancer, God has structured the universe in such a magnificent way that even an evil force like you can only affect the impermanent. You can only kill what, in essence, was dying anyway.

But you can never touch the permanent, the love, the laughter, the victories, the family connection. You can never take away one single hug or comforting kiss… and you can never dilute the wonderful memories and endless love we have for our mom.”

Please share this with someone you know who is facing cancer. Leave a comment below about a mom’s legacy. Thank you.

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Bob Jones

Happily married to Jocelyn for 44 years. We have two adult sons, Cory and his wife Lynsey and their son Vincent and daughter Jayda; Jean Marc and his wife Angie and their three daughters, Quinn, Lena and Annora. I love inspiring people through communicating, blogging, and coaching. I enjoy writing, running, and reading. I'm a fan of the Double E, Bruins, Celtics, Red Sox and Pats. Follow me on Twitter @bobjones49ers

One Comment

  • Julie MacKenzie says:

    I loved the story, “Living on your own terms: Mom’s Legacy”. I had similar conversations with my Dad, when I was 19 years old…as he lost his battle with pancreatic cancer in 3 weeks. (From diagnosis until his passing…3 weeks) I was Daddy’s Little Girl. So tough losing my Dad & my hero. Ironically, I was working at The Cross Cancer Institute as a Dietary Technologist. He did not pass there…thank goodness. He told me all the things he needed to tell me in those 3 weeks. The hospital had to turn visitors away, so that he could get some rest. He really left this earth with so many people loving him & missing him. It was apparent at his funeral. Not enough room for the friends that came to say goodbye. A police escort from his friends…as our restaurant was only 1 block away from the police station downtown. Alot of the officers used to dine with their families at our restaurant. They became my Dad’s close friends. My Dad & Mom were very active in the Chinese community & donated time and money for alot of causes. I guess that’s where I get my inspiration to volunteer. It doesn’t always have to be money…it can be the gift of your time as well. I understand…all too well, the success stories & the heartbreaking stories that Cancer can bring to one’s life. I experienced over 22 years of stories. Some happy…some terribly sad. But, witnessing how strong and resilient that one’s spirit can be. Faith & hope are great qualities to have when you are battling a formidable foe. I witnessed such brave souls. Working at The Cross taught me some of life’s best lessons. Lessons that I could never learn in a book. I can certainly relate to Dr. Maraboli & his own experience with his Mom. Thank you for sharing this story Pastor Bob. ❤️

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