Monday, July 12, 2010

"It feels so good to be alive"

In this picture I'm flying through the air at Healing Odyssey, an amazing retreat for women cancer survivors. I'd never wanted to swap cancer stories with anybody else. Ew, right? But on this weekend in the hills above Santa Barbara, I met a posse of remarkable women, and far from finding them depressing, I came away with a sense that if they could thumb their noses at cancer, so could I. A highlight of the weekend was the Ropes Course, where we were invited to challenge our fears by walking out to the middle of a telephone pole suspended 25 feet in the air. I aced the assignment. I can manage heights, and my balance is good. But it was still a challenge to let myself fall backward and be lowered to earth. That smile on my face in the photo? Not entirely genuine. I was trying to match my expression to the fact that my teammates had cinched my harness so tight, I couldn't straighten my legs. But really, who cares? It feels so good to be alive. Everything else is an asterisk.

-Anne Stockwell, cancer survivor and superstar

No comments:

Post a Comment