Angela Schaefers reveals the power of sharing our stories
A year or so ago, I was interviewed by Angela Schaefers for her online talk show, Your Story Matters . It was unlike any other interview I’ve experienced. Angela asked probing questions about my childhood and how it impacted my life and my cancer experience. It really made me examine myself, and I think it made for a more interesting interview. I found a kindred spirit in Angela we are both stage IV cancer survivors who are passionate about sharing stories of people who have overcome seemingly impossible challenges. Angela just released a book of the same title, Your Story Matters, a guide to help people begin to understand, heal from andlearn how to share their story.
I asked Angela to share her story with you:
In September, I celebrated surviving 10 years since a stage IV salivary gland cancer diagnosis. I was told at the time I did not have long to live, so I prepared myself to die and truly believed during the first year of my diagnosis that my fate was sealed. I did not want to die. I was not ready, and I certainly did not want to leave behind my three young children without their mother.
I do not have one specific explanation about why I am still here on earth. Sometimes it doesn’t even matter, because honestly each day that I wake up and am alive, I am GRATEFUL! Why tempt fate, my destiny or God’s plan by continuing to ask how and why I have been blessed with life? On the other hand, I do believe that three critical things contribute to my life going on:
My faith- the kind of faith that is NOT based on what I want or think is best, but is based on trusting in God’s plan and purpose AND having the utmost faith that His will in my life (and my children’s for that matter) is sufficient.
My desire to live- this is not some lightly taken ‘wish’ to live, but it is desire in action! I actively pursue living each day like I am LIVING not DYING! I focus each day on doing my best to be healthy; spiritually, physically and emotionally.
Living my purpose- in the midst of ‘thinking’ my life was ending soon and contemplating what exactly I had done with the time I had lived I discovered my purpose. I learned that everything I had endured and overcome was meant for a purpose. I learned that my story was full of nuggets of wisdom and gems of truth that could not only help my own personal growth but could also help others. I discovered that each of our stories mattered and when shared are encouraging and inspiring to others.
Whether you have a diagnosis of a death sentence, a life of challenges and obstacles or even find yourself in what seems unbearable and hopeless … I encourage you to step back from all the what if’s, if only’s and why me’s and live each day as if it is the only day you have to be your best self!
Angela is an inspirational speaker, writer and talk show producer and host. She has created Your Story Matters as a platform to share her own and others stories to change the world one story at a time by encouraging and inspiring one another. Visit Angela at www.yourstorymatters.net . You can find her book, Your Story Matters, on Amazon.com.
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