CANCER TEAM

23 April 2017

Who are you traveling with?

A number of fellow travelers accompanied me through this week. And I’m pretty sure—based on the therapeutic sheer pleasure of hanging out with them—I’m much healthier than when the week began.

There was the cancer-kicking, wilderness-hiking posse at our season opener: Six gentle miles along the Metolius River.

 


Photo credit: Mike Gibson

 

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17 April 2017

Cancer diagnosis: 15 excellent answers to “What next?”

Back when my husband, Gary, and I first heard those epic unbalancing words: “You have cancer,” my thoughts went to, What next? Where do we go from here?

 

Photo credit: Unsplash

 

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26 March 2017

43 highly effective self-care tips

Self-care was something I didn’t do well in the final months of my husband’s life. Because I could do it all myself. Because I didn’t want to bother other people. Because self-care sounds rather self-ish self-centered self-conscious.

But it’s not. Self-care is simply doing those things that help us take care of our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. So we can better care for others.

 

Photo credit: Unsplash

 

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19 March 2017

10 health benefits from being creative

This artistic arrangement caught my eye earlier this week while walking the Tumalo Creek trail. Smooth stones, conifer cones, tree branches. And an icy snowball. Someone was feeling creative, and it made me smile.

Did you know creativity has a good deal to do with our health and wellbeing?

 

Photo credit: Marlys

 

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12 March 2017

Cancer and financial toxicity: 6 tactics

My friend, upon turning 40, had a mammogram. Suspicious areas showed up in both breasts, which precipitated an ultrasound, two biopsies and additional mammography. All to the tune of $4,000. Although no cancer was detected, my friend needs to return every six months for images. “High risk,” they said. “We need to watch this closely,” they said.

Here’s the catch: Her insurance pays for preventive mammography, but not diagnostic mammography. Which means the ongoing imaging will be a significant out-of-pocket expense.

Short of propping open a guitar case and strumming on the streets, what’s a person to do?

 

Photo credit: Pixabay

 

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5 March 2017

11 secrets I learned about living after losing

After my husband, Gary, died of cancer, I relocated to southern California, claimed my daughter-in-law’s pink-rimmed bike as my own, and said Yes to several not-necessarily-planned-far-in-advance adventures.

 

Venice Beach with my pink-rimmed ride

 

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26 February 2017

22 ways to support your newly-diagnosed friend

Over the past few years, a number of people have asked about best ways to support a newly-diagnosed-with-cancer friend, neighbor, or family member. Or how to support a close friend who just learned a loved one had cancer.

 

Photo credit: Unsplash

 

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19 February 2017

A to Z on living and dying

Being an obsessive list-maker, if given the assignment to sum up the things Hubby’s cancer taught us about living and dying—and if the assignment required an alphabetized list—it would look something like this (you’re going to need to work with me on a couple of these):

 

Photo credit: Pixabay

 

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19 February 2017

Reflections on the restorative qualities of tea

To some perhaps a frivolous topic, but when it comes to dealing with life’s challenges, the simple act of brewing a cup of tea and sitting in a favorite chair, whispering a prayer and silently reflecting on all the blessings that are still evident despite the challenges, and then placing some of the weight on paper—a list of things to be done but not right this minute—well, right there, half the battle won. With tea leading the charge.

 

Photo credit: Unsplash

 

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30 January 2017

Cancer and counter-culture courage

Since bringing mom-in-law Ivalene home from the hospital, we’ve been hit with the crud. The most energy I’ve expended has been heating up chicken noodle soup and making mugs of TheraFlu and throwing a fleece blanket into the dryer to tuck around my chilled mother-in-law.

 

Photo credit: Unsplash

 

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About Me

Hello, my name is Marlys Johnson. I’m a cancer widow, author, speaker and blogger. I love getting outdoors; would rather lace up hiking boots than go shopping. I have a passion for repurposing old junk into cool new stuff. And an even greater passion for showing people how to navigate life's challenges. Tenaciously. And with heart wide open.

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