Thank you to everyone who entered our #LIFEREBOOT x MUSE HEADBAND CONTEST!
We have picked a winner: Sabrina of Toronto, ON! See her entry below and her life changing #lifereboot story. Congrats Sabrina!
When life throws you some metastatic cancer in your early thirties, what do you do? Well, you reboot your life, of course.
I am talking about a complete lifestyle makeover. Dietary changes, nutritional supplements, mindfulness and meditation, exercise, Reiki massages, spirituality, a change in attitude, and taking life one day at a time. This was all foreign territory to me...until now.
Sadly I was not new to the cancer game because by the age of 31 I was already a five-time cancer survivor. I like to call it my career in cancer. However, at age 32 I heard those dreadful words that no one wants to ever hear...‘your cancer has metastasized.’ It was at this very moment that my entire life flashed right before my eyes.
‘Oscar the Osteosarcoma,' which previously resided in my neck (and was removed by surgery), metastasized to my lungs. My previous cancers had all been first stage, localized tumors that were relatively easy to treat. These previous cancers were curable. Now I was faced with an incurable cancer. All I could think of was ‘my life just started, how could I be dying?’ and ‘how much time do I have left?’
The thing with metastatic cancer is that time is not on your side. You also do not have the luxury of weighing your options because there aren't really any options to begin with. The fourth-stage cancer patient is the black sheep of the cancer world. This patient represents everything that doctors fear, a patient that in many cases will not survive, a patient whose treatment (if there is any) is unclear and uncertain.
So, being a recent newlywed, I decided that I had to act very quickly in order to try to extend my life (a life I absolutely adore). Cancer had already taken so much from me in the past; I was not about to let it take my life too. With all these little ticking time bombs in my lungs, I felt I needed to do something drastic in order to have a chance at beating the dismal odds that I was given.
Enter the life reboot. My current diagnosis forced me to alter my life physically, mentally, and spiritually. For starters, I decided to trade in my steak and martinis for kale and carrot juice. I revamped my entire diet to include a lot of juicing, raw organic food, no dairy, no refined sugar, little to no gluten, and a mainly plant-based vegan diet, which has had its drawbacks (as I am an avid foodie and lover of meat and cheese). The cravings were quite intense in the beginning, and then there was the dizziness, headaches, stomach pains, and ridiculous irritable bowel syndrome. Definitely not fun. However, I was intent on becoming a health junkie, and overdosing on nutrition was my mission.
I began researching everything and anything cancer-related as well as reading up on how powerful the mind is in the healing process. I realized that I needed to take some time off of work in order to focus on my health, which became my full-time job. As a licensed lawyer, I thought the stress and demands of the legal profession would be counterproductive to healing myself. I joined a meditation class, engaging in weekly practice as well as self-study. This was difficult for me at first given my A type personality. There was constant chatter going on in my brain, not to mention how restless I became the minute I had to think about nothing and just focus on my breath. It sounded easy enough, right? Well, I pushed myself through it, and I am now loving it. However, I'm still not a Zen master or even remotely close, but I'm hoping to get there one day.
Stephanie Gilman's journey to reboot her life
Stephanie's favourite posts from her blog, passmeanothercupcake.com
Stephanie's journey in photos