Tag Archives: Bev Skornia

Celebrating the one year anniversary of my first chemo treatment!

5 Jan

December 20th marked my one year anniversary of chemo.

I woke that morning feeling overwhelmed with my gratitude for life…(read more)

December 14, 2012 was my first chemo.  I woke this morning feeling overwhelmed with gratitude for my life, my family and friends and the friends that I have made around the world through social media and speaking engagements.

– See more at: http://breastcancerwarrior.org/1/post/2013/12/celebrating-one-year-of-my-first-chemo-treatment.html#sthash.3HCVE5op.dpuf

December 14, 2012 was my first chemo.  I woke this morning feeling overwhelmed with gratitude for my life, my family and friends and the friends that I have made around the world through social media and speaking engagements.

– See more at: http://breastcancerwarrior.org/1/post/2013/12/celebrating-one-year-of-my-first-chemo-treatment.html#sthash.3HCVE5op.dpuf

The Hidden Scars of Breast Cancer

6 Nov

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Breast cancer leaves many scars, but the hidden ones are often the hardest to heal.  This honest, compelling look at the hidden scars of breast cancer is a must read for anyone who has been touched by cancer.  Read more…

New Website Focuses on Breast Cancer ~ The Empowered Patient

25 Oct

I’m so honored to be a part of a new website that was launched this week.  It’s called Empowered Patient.  Click below to visit the site where you’ll find one of my videos on the left hand side!

I’d love to hear your feedback!

EMPOWERED PATIENT

Wishing you a day filled with HOPE and inspiration!

Beverly McKee

The Breast Cancer Warrior

I’m so very honored to be a part of an new website that focuses solely on breast cancer.  It is a part of Cancer.org called “Empowered Patient”.  You can see my video on the left hand side of the screen!  Click below and share your feedback…
Wishing you a day filled with HOPE and inspiration!Beverly McKee
The Breast Cancer Warrior

– See more at: http://www.breastcancerwarrior.org/1/post/2013/10/new-website-focuses-on-breast-cancer-empowered-patient.html#sthash.bpthiJuN.dpuf

It’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month!

1 Oct

It’s October 1st, which signifies the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Before you buy that pink ribbon product, watch this video to become an informed consumer and hear a message that may save a life.

Read more…

A Crisis Averted Due to an Act of Kindness

27 Sep

 

ImageMy heart stopped when I saw the driver coming towards us…heading the wrong way up a one way ramp.  It was Saturday night and my family was headed home from dinner with Grandma.  We weren’t prepared for this unexpected event.  We veered out of the way and my husband rolled down his window to warn the driver.  An older lady peeked out of the door.  My husband yelled a warning over the traffic all around us…telling her she was headed the wrong way towards a busy intersection.

Read more…

Test Results!

27 Sep

Thanks for the kind comments, emails and FB messages in regards to my last blog:  Test Result Anxiety.

The results are in…Read more

Test Result Anxiety

24 Sep

 

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The email seemed innocent enough:  “Your medical records have been updated.”  My hands started to tremble and I felt slightly sick to my stomach.  I couldn’t log in quickly enough.  I had to resist the urge to hide my eyes behind my hands while the results updated…I wanted one more moment of innocence.  All of the air left my lungs when I realized this was NOT the test result I was anticipating. 

 Back to the waiting game…

What could possibly cause so much anxiety, you ask?

Read more…

Transforming A Day of Surgery Prep Into “Pay It Forward Friday”

20 Sep

Pay It forward Friday

The Breast Cancer Warrior shares her latest quest to find the rainbows through the storm. Check out her inspiring story/video about how transforming a day of surgery prep into “Pay It Forward Friday”. She invites you to join her with the goal of making the world a better place with one random act of kindness each week. Guaranteed to make you smile!

Read more…

Why I’m Opting for a Prophylaytic Hysterectomy

11 Sep

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Do you buy lottery tickets?  Like most people, I play on occasion, usually when the jackpot reaches the multi-million dollar mark.  Who couldn’t use an extra 20 million dollars? 

Did you know that your chance of winning the Powerball is one in 175 million?  And yet we still play. 

What if you had a one in four chance of winning?  Would you buy a ticket?  I would with those odds!

Some wonder why I am having a preventative hysterectomy with these same odds of developing ovarian cancer (27% to be exact).  My journey through breast cancer came with an all expense paid trip to world BRAC testing.  It was a whole new world for me.  I dodged the bullet with BRAC 1 mutation but I wasn’t so lucky with BRAC 2.  I officially have something in common with Angelina Jolie!

Please click here to read more….

A Lesson In Letting Go

6 Sep

 

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I was enjoying an early morning nature walk through the farmland behind my home.  It is my favorite place to reconnect with nature in Missouri.  Long stretches of shaded canopies created by hundreds of mature trees, abandoned fields that create a home for an abundance of wildlife, dry creek beds and antiquated barns.  I had missed my walks through this wonderland filled with the sights and sounds of nature at its finest.  I rounded the corner to greet the oversized tree that I had come to love through the years.  It is a gentle giant with limbs reaching far into the sky, providing a perfect silhouette against the field behind it.  I had taken many pictures of this tree throughout the years, each season bringing with it a different type of beauty. 

 

I stopped short when my beloved tree came into view.  I knew immediately that something was wrong.  The tree should have been full of beautiful green leaves, shielding the ground below from the bright sunlight cascading through the field.  Instead, the tree was nearly bare…no leaves on its branches or the ground.  I assessed the situation as I approached my old friend.  I was saddened to see a mammoth vine had climbed up the tree’s trunk and infiltrated most of the branches.  The vine was taking over the tree, squeezing the life out of it, one leaf at a time. 

 

I felt helplessly overwhelmed as I looked up at the dying tree, wondering how I could help.  I continued on my walk with a heavy heart and the goal of finding a solution.  As I pondered my new found dilemma, it occurred to me that this didn’t happen overnight.  The vine had climbed the tree’s trunk slowly but steadily, the tree oblivious to the danger at hand.

 

It dawned on me that as humans, we tend to allow emotional baggage creep into our lives until it slowly begins to weigh us down…just as the vine had taken over the tree.  Everyone experiences difficult challenges throughout life.  Many of us shut down emotionally in order to deal with the crisis at hand, not allowing our emotions to get in our way.  We put them in a little corner of our mind and move on.  We continue on our path of life, adding to that corner of unexpressed emotion with every loss, trauma or stressor.

 

Over time, the weight of our emotional baggage becomes too heavy to carry.  Much like the vine took over the branches of my beloved tree, the long term effects of chronic stress weigh heavily upon us, both physically and emotionally.  We start to experience depression, anxiety, sleep disturbances, high blood pressure and a host of other physical ailments.   Our mind and body wear down from carrying the heavy weight for an extended period of time, crippling our immune system.  We become vulnerable to the smallest emotional stressors and have a hard time fighting off even the mildest illnesses.

 

At some point, we have to make a decision to let go of the emotional baggage.  The options are endless for letting go, but include talking to a friend, therapist or clergy or expressing our emotions through art, music, dance or writing.  Meditation is a very popular way to stay in tune with your feelings and emotions.   Bear in mind that if you’ve been carrying some of those feelings for many years, it won’t be easy to leave them behind.  It requires a lot of effort and ongoing practice to move past those feelings, but it can be done.

 

Letting go of emotional baggage is an act of self preservation.  Once we’ve gone through this process, many of us feel as though the weight of the world has been lifted from our shoulders.  We owe it to ourselves to take a moment every day to assess our feelings and let go of the emotions from our past. 

 

I know from talking to fellow survivors that many of us add to our emotional baggage on our journey through breast cancer.  We are too busy fighting the disease and side effects of treatment to experience the fear, anxiety, anger and sadness that accompanies our diagnosis.  I have tried to be cognizant of this fact throughout my journey, but seeing my favorite old tree suffocating from that vine really brought it all to light for me.  I want to live my life in the present, not weighed down by the emotions of my past.  I hope you can do the same because as we all know, life is short.  I hope you’ll take time to let go of old hurts, cry the unshed tears and move on to a happier, healthier life. 

 

I’m happy to report that my gentle giant, the tall tree has been given a second chance at life!  The caretaker of the property cut the vine from the trunk of the tree and also cut the vines from the branches.  It will take time, but eventually, the tree will sprout new leaves and once again, offer a canopy of shade to all those who seek shelter beneath it.

 

Thanks for reading!

Beverly McKee

The Breast Cancer Warrior

For more information about The Breast Cancer Warrior or if you know a 25+ year breast cancer survivor, please visit my website at www.breastcancerwarrior.org.

Watch my video to learn how I became the Breast Cancer Warrior by clicking here.

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest for the latest updates about my journey through breast cancer and for daily inspiration.

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