4 secrets for viewing cancer as an adventure

Hubby and I took up hiking and snowshoeing in our cancer years. We hiked the magnificent Cascades, Tetons and Rockies. And started stashing away loose change for some Swiss Alps hiking.

Hubby got his passport; I got mine renewed. And our loose change grew large enough to book a trip. But we ran out of time. And so I saved a few of Hubby’s ashes. And I’m leaving tomorrow for a ten-day walking tour in Switzerland.


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Go Ahead Tours photo


Deciding to create adventure and live life more fully was part of our cancer team. That is, after we first worked through the self-pity. The frustration. The discouragement. The weariness.

How do you get to the place of viewing life’s adversities — in our case, cancer — as opportunity for adventure? Here are 4 secrets we learned:

1. Let go of all negative emotions. You know which ones they are — the ones that keep you potatoed to the couch. We’ll all experience hard things in life. Some difficulties will paralyze; and some will energize. For the most part, we get to choose which category we want to be in.

2. Determine your adventure. Maybe your adventure is getting up the nerve to join a book club. It could be establishing a home business or trekking in the Himalayas; taking up line dancing or starting a blog. One of our friends completed cancer treatment, and then signed up for a coast-to-coast ride. At age 72. Across America on a bike. Talk about getting off the couch.

3. Start stashing away loose change. Not all adventures require an investment, but many do. Whatever is the smartest way to do the money thing, do that.

4. Go for it. One of my nieces was visiting in July when I mentioned the Swiss Alps idea. She encouraged me to check into booking it. Then and there. “It’ll give you something to look forward to,” she said. Smart girl. Book the tour; sign up for the class; set up a website for your new business. Go for it.

This from a Stanford commencement speech by Steve Jobs, referring to the final issue of Whole Earth catalog:

On the back cover was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

I am hungry to try new things, make new friends, make a difference, be a haven, be a source of encouragement.

Foolishly pursuing the goal of supplementing my widow’s income with writing income, no matter the impossibilities.

Adventuring off the couch and away from the comfortable. To see where the road takes me.

What about you? What is it you’ve always wanted to do? Are you hungry enough for it? Foolish enough? I hope so!

P.S. If  you found this post interesting or helpful, please share, tweet or pin!


How cancer gave us date night


Remembering Hubby on his birthday, our anniversary


  1. Barbara Winterfeld

    Very inspiring, and encouraging Marlys. I can see being on the right tract over the last 12 years of my cancer and widowhood journey. May God continue to bless you in all your endeavors.

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