Reflections on 2016
In my previous post, I reflected on Grace and my self-funded book tour for This Present Moment. On this – the 30 day of December – I want to take a moment to reflect on other highlights of 2016;
- Getting to speak at the Icon Cancer Foundation Gala, where I was introduced by the man who has saved my life three times: my oncologist, Dr John Bashford; and where Grace auctioned one of her personally coloured mandalas towards cancer research and clinical trials.
- Holding public talks and colouring sessions at Ballina Richmond Tweed Library and in Melbourne at the Olivia Newton John Cancer Wellness & Research Centre. Meeting senior cancer researchers and touring scientific labs. (Whilst on the Virgin plane heading home from Melbourne, I read Issue 35 of Collective Hub with Richard Branson on the cover and a picture of my book in the letters page. A real head in the clouds moment!)
- Speaking at the Ballina View Club to a wonderful room of women about my experience of living with secondary cancer.
- Grace and I being interviewed on 2MaxFM 91.3 Narrabri Community Radio and myself given a two hour interview on Brisbane’s Family 96.5FM (listen to the podcast here).
- Being filmed with family, friends and kind strangers colouring in mandalas on Channel 7 News in Northern Rivers NSW while talking about This Present Moment and running in the Mother’s Day Classic.
- My words appearing on Stephanie Dowrick’s Universal Heart Bookclub and also in the Breast Cancer National Association’s Inside Story newsletter.
- My web developer sister Kim joining Grace and I to create our first e-course; “Your Present Moment: A Spring Clean for Your Mind”, which we aim to run every September. We had over twenty participants for the pilot, which featured 28 new mandalas drawn by Grace matched to my 28 written meditations.
- This Present Moment being chosen for a book club in Narrabri, NSW, where I guest-appeared via FaceTime(!) with a lovely bunch of readers.
- Grace and I being featured in The Courier Mail’s QWeekend magazine.
Not too bad a year for a couple of self-confessed introverts!
Yes, 2016 has not always been easy, it has been a completely devastating year of loss for our family and our friends, just as it has for the collective community who mourn for the public figures that have also departed. Difficult things happened and loved ones are gone, but never forgotten. Throughout it all This Present Moment has sustained us. Our book was written and shared to remind us that all we ever have is NOW.
We say Happy New Year at this time each year knowing we have to take the good with the bad but we live with new hope. The launches and community gatherings of 2016 have been a reminder to me of the urge to dare to begin, to find your voice and to take those first steps into the arena – now – more than ever.
“When we spend our lives waiting until we’re perfect or bulletproof before we walk into the arena, we ultimately sacrifice relationships and opportunities that may not be recoverable, we squander our precious time, and we turn our backs on our gifts, those unique contributions that only we can make. Perfect and bulletproof are seductive, but they don’t exist in the human experience” – Brene Brown.
If Grace and I had waited, if we had taken heed of niggling doubts, if we had laughed at our ambitions, we would never have started.
“Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.“ – Goethe.
Happy New Year to you all.
Love Meg x