Voices: New Year’s Aspirations

New Year’s Aspirations | Dee Sparacio

On January 1, 2006, when I was in treatment for ovarian cancer, I decided that I wouldn’t make resolutions anymore. Why?  Because there were only two things I aspired to do, finish chemo and live!  Since then I have made aspirations for each new year. For me setting these goals is my way of looking forward to the year ahead and how to make my life, however long it might be, better.

In the past, I aspired to complete chemotherapy treatments for my recurrence (2009), raise money for ovarian cancer research at my cancer center (2012), write more frequently on my blog (2011) and travel more (every year).

This year, I have a few new aspirations.

I aspire to create more paintings of quilt squares, dogs and scenes of places I’ve traveled to.  I started painting after I was initially diagnosed and find it very relaxing. If you are a survivor, you might try writing in a journal, playing an instrument, knitting, or crocheting as a way to relax.

I aspire to move more. Not move to another house–I love the one I live in now–but move in ways such as walking, swimming or riding a bike. It seems the more I move the better I feel. Research studies have shown a link between physical activity and improved quality of life during and after cancer treatment, so I figure I am on the right track.

I aspire to participate in a monthly Tweetchat for women with gynecologic cancers. I might need to expand this aspiration to include helping to organize the chat since there currently is not a regular one.

A tweet is a message that is 140 characters long and is posted on Twitter. A Tweetchat is when a group of people all tweet at the same time about the same topic using the same hashtag(#). It is an online conversation. Or I like to think of it as what was known as a telephone party line. There are a number of chats for other diseases including breast cancer (#bcsm). I occasionally participate in the breast cancer chat since many topics they talk about overlap with things of interest to me and other gynecologic cancer survivors. Anyone from anywhere in the country or world may participate. All you need is a Twitter account.

If I don’t complete everything I aspire to that’s okay because I can always try again in 2014. I am looking forward to every single day of 2013. I am sure all those days won’t be sunny or anxiety-free (there will be blood tests and scans, of course) but they will “be” and that is what is meaningful.

What do you aspire to this year?

Happy New Year!

Dee Every Day is a Blessing!