It’s so hard to be confident and love ourselves every day. Sometimes I wake up and I have a pimple, I have bags under my eyes, or I just don’t feel awesome. It takes so much strength for me to be positive and tell myself that, “I rock no matter what.”

On days where I have to give myself positive affirmations to turn my negative mind off, I am always very proud of myself. It’s not easy but I want my daughter to grow up around people who love themselves, because you never know what surprises life is going to throw at you and when you’ll need to tap in to that inner strength. For example, my good friend was diagnosed with cancer 2 years ago. It was a shock to us all because she is in her twenties and has a very healthy lifestyle. She started chemotherapy and lost all her hair. She had always been very proud of her hair and some days didn’t feel confident with her new looks, she wanted to stay in her apartment all day and who can blame her? Loving yourself under normal circumstances is hard enough but when you throw cancer, hair loss, and extreme weight loss into the picture it’s like climbing a mountain.

One day she just got tired of hating her new looks, she didn’t have the energy anymore. From then on she embraced her body and how it had changed. First she was Mia Farrow and then later Sinead O’Connor. We live in New York City where people love making bold fashion choices so some people thought she had cut her hair on purpose. Now, my friend is cancer free and her hair is slowly growing back. I am proud of her for so many things but mainly for the fact she was able to stay positive and love herself under the toughest of circumstances.

I have another friend who was diagnosed with cancer 2 years ago (pictured). She has been like a grandmother to me so when we were told she only had 2 months to live it was earth shattering. Despite the diagnosis, she lived another 2 years and got to meet my daughter. Three weeks ago, the doctors told her that they were going to stop chemotherapy because there was nothing left that they could do, a hospice service began visiting her house; she had planned on going to a wedding that weekend. Some people thought she should stay at home and rest, others thought she should do whatever made her happy. In the end, she came to the wedding and was the belle of the ball. We all got to party with her one last time and for me it was special because she met my daughter. I have so much respect for her bravery. After losing all her hair, and her body completely failing her, she was still able to muster up enough self confidence and love to go out and party with her friends and family. I am so glad she did because she passed away over the weekend and while I am very sad it is comforting that my last image is of her dancing and smiling.

These two women inspired me before they became ill because they are such positive people, but watching them stay optimistic despite being diagnosed with cancer, made me proud of them. I hope that I can teach my daughter to live her life so that no matter what happens to her or how her appearance changes, she loves herself no matter what.

Stay Glamorous,

Shannon Sutherland

Janitor at Mom Blog PoopPeePuke.com

Lover of Funny at The World New York Comedy Club

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  1. Missy November 8, 2012 at 11:35 AM #

    This hits extremely close to home today.

    • Shannon November 8, 2012 at 11:41 AM #

      I hope everything is ok Missy 🙂

  2. Brianna November 8, 2012 at 1:21 PM #

    These two stories are such awesome ones. People should look at people like them and than at themselves. It’s ladies like the two who you mentioned that should be looked upon as role models. Thank you for the very moving stories today, Shannon. I loved each and every one of the them.

    • Shannon November 8, 2012 at 8:50 PM #

      Thanks Brianna 🙂

  3. Donna November 10, 2012 at 12:44 AM #

    I am in tears… Feels sort of like I wrote this post myself.

    Sorry that you lost your 2nd Nanna… Today just so happens to be the anniversary of my Dad’s death after his 6 month battle with cancer. He did no chemo treatments and fought through it from diagnosis to the end. I’m glad you found a positive way to deal with your friend’s diagnosis as well as your Nanna’s… It’s been a tough thing for me to tackle, so you’ve given me some hope. Thank you!

    I should mention that it’s odd that I landed here after Googling t-shirts of all things. Definite Kismet.

    • Shannon November 11, 2012 at 8:02 AM #

      That is Kismet Donna! I can’t believe you found me from googling t-shirts. I still struggle with it but thinking positively definitely helps 🙂

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