I couldn’t live my life to the fullest if I didn’t face the possibility of not surviving.
The battle against cancer transformed my life, but I never asked the “Why me?” question. Instead, I focused on planning for the end of my life in case I didn’t survive.
How do you find the strength to carry on when you don't even know if you will be alive in 3 months.
Leaving the “Land of Hope” and crossing over to “Reality Land” was not easy. I had to find a balance between hope, where I was focused on positive thoughts and best-case scenarios, and facing reality, which meant being honest about the simple fact that I might die soon.
When I began to prepare my “Plan B,” I discovered that there was nowhere I could turn for answers. Navigating through “Reality Land” was like driving a car for the first time while wearing a blindfold. I didn’t have a map to help me find my way. Instead, I had to use my inner heart compass.
Up to this point in my life, I had always traveled a lot and found it necessary to have a Plan B for the children, in case anything happened to me in my travels. This time, however, I felt an urge to rewrite Plan B to cover not only the logistics of care but also my legacy.
I remember that friends and family would say things like, “Susan, just stay positive; everything will be fine,” or, “Isn’t it a bit too early to talk to your children about dying?”; but all this well-meaning advice came from people who had never experienced a life-threatening disease firsthand.
I was very touched by their concern for me, but at the time, hope wasn’t an issue for which I needed help. I was already hoping and praying every day. Of greater importance to me then was a strong feeling that I both wanted and needed to be a responsible mom.
I had seen too many children left behind when their parents passed away without a chance to say goodbye. Planning my legacy when I was seriously ill was like taking out an extended insurance policy; I hopefully wasn’t going to use it tomorrow, but in case I had to, it was a peaceful feeling to know that my family would be in safe hands.
Mommy, Can I Call You In Heaven?: How we coped with cancer as a family
This is a book about the hardest subject; when a family must take responsibility and cope with the life-threatening disease. When Susan was diagnosed with colon cancer, she witnessed first-hand the lack of support for families in her situation. She has spent the past seven years developing resources for likeminded families in need.
With heartfelt compassion for you and yours,
About Susan Binau
Susan is a motivational speaker, published author, and survivor of cancer and other life-threatening illnesses that changed her perspective on life.
Her mission is to inspire others through "hands-on tools," educational programs, coaching and self-help books.