Posts Tagged ‘optimism’

Nothing Was Unfriendly

July 5, 2012

Jacques Lusseyran







I just started reading And There Was Light, the astonishing autobiography of Jacques Lusseyran, who, though blinded at age eight, was a leader of the French Resistance in World War II. I am only five pages into his story, but what he wrote about his happy childhood resonated deep within me:





I felt sure that nothing was unfriendly, that the branches I used to swing on would hold firm, and that the paths, no matter how winding, would take me to a place where I would not be afraid; that all paths, eventually, would (more…)

How to Become a Cancer Pre-vivor

May 10, 2011

Merit Gest




I enjoy reading about people with positive attitudes who remain optimistic in the face of serious life challenges. That’s why I liked this essay by Merit Gest on Mamapedia Voices, a website featuring posts from up-and-coming mom bloggers and well-known mom experts. I’m impressed by the way Merit reframed her approach to maintaining good  health and viewing the threat of cancer, and I know her words will inspire others.



WHO CHISELED THAT OVER THE DOOR?
Challenging Assumptions. Creating Possibilities.

Ten yeas ago, the assumption was that to find your buddies from high school and connect with them you would have to spend a lot of time doing research by phone. Now, Facebook has created new possibilities to connect people all over the world in moments.

Going back a little farther in time, here’s another assumption that’s changing — and it’s definitely more serious. Twenty years ago, if your mother died from breast cancer, you may have assumed that you were more likely to die from the disease as well. Now genetic testing and preventative surgeries are giving women options to outlive their mothers.

As someone who faced a double threat from both ovarian and breast cancer, I ask (more…)

Yours Was Not Meant to be an Ordinary Life

October 16, 2010





You do not have to be a perfect human being to find or create the job that is perfect for you. Everybody else has shortcomings too; nobody else has your unique blend of strengths and skills.





Too many people overvalue what they are not and undervalue what they are.
Malcolm Forbes

Positive thinkers look at a goal and begin mapping out the steps they can take to achieve it. They know that no worthy objective can withstand the assault of (more…)

Bright-Sided or Right-Minded?

September 6, 2010




I take issue with many of the points in the Washington Posts review of Barbara Ehrenreich‘s new book, Bright-sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America. I took the liberty of commenting on the points i disagree with.





When Barbara Ehrenreich was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2000, the sharp-eyed social critic found herself nearly as discomfited by the “pink ribbon culture” surrounding the disease as by the illness itself. Relentlessly upbeat, cloyingly inspirational,

Seems to me that critics of all stripes are under strict orders to avoid any and all feelings of tenderness and genuine human emotion. While many of us are deeply touched and uplifted by, say, the books of Mitch Albom or by inspirational attitudes and quotes, critics make a point to distance themselves emotionally by using words such as “cloying,” “mawkish,” “treacly” and “syrupy.” Such a response says more about the critics than whatever it is they’re criticizing.

the breast cancer world, as Ehrenreich describes it, is a place where anger, fear and depression — all perfectly reasonable responses to a potentially mortal diagnosis — are frowned upon and the cancer itself is lauded as a great opportunity for (more…)


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