25 Life Lessons From a Two-Time #Cancersurvivor




1. Life is short. Don’t wait for the perfect moment to DO or SAY something important to you.

2. Death is not a failure. It is part of life and the more we accept that fact the more we can live intentionally and without as much fear.

3. A simple act of kindness can make someone’s day and leave a lasting impression.



4. You have the ability to make an impact. Leave your mark. Share your experience, your knowledge with others.


5.“ Hope” is powerful.



6. If you don’t know what to say to someone in crisis, try saying “I don’t know what to say. But I want you to know I am thinking of you.”


7. You are stronger than you think. Trust me, you are.


8. Life is better with a dog


9. Trust your gut. Intuition is powerful.


10. It is important to take a “time-out”. Walking clears your head.



11. People will surprise you. In a time of crisis there will be those who disappear, and others you might not expect, who will be by your side. People cope differently.

12. There are no guarantees in life. Life isn’t fair. Don’t take things for granted. In the blink of an eye life as you know it can change. None of us is immune to life’s challenges.

13. Cancer sucks.

14. Learn how to say “no”. You don’t actually have to do (certain) things you don’t want to do. You don’t need to please everyone. Be thoughtful about how you want to spend your time.

15. A good friendship goes both ways. Some friendships grow with you, others do not. Nurture the relationships that are most important to you.


16. You don’t have as much control as you think. As hard as it may be not to worry, it really doesn’t change the outcome. Let go of what you cannot control and focus on what you can control.

17. Everyone has a story and a journey. What you see superficially is usually not the full story.

18. In the end, it is all about our relationships with each other. Remind yourself what is most important to you, ESPECIALLY on those days when everything seems to be going wrong and personalities and emotions are involved.

19. Get rid of stuff. All the stuff you ever owned may be important to you but probably not to anyone else. Just more to throw out in the end.


20. It is so important to laugh.



21. Life is full of curveballs. Expect the unexpected.


22. You don’t always have a choice in the cards you are dealt, but you do have a choice in how you will respond.


23. Breathe. Slow down. Find your “happy place” that soothes your soul.



24. Stay true to yourself. Most of the time it doesn’t matter what people think and they don’t always care as much as you think they do.


25. Take time to live in the moment. Appreciate what you have today.


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About Shari

I am a two-time cancer survivor and patient advocate. Diagnosed as a young adult, at age 25 with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, I had to quickly face the reality of life’s curveballs. My treatment offered a potential cure while at the same time, underestimated the long term side effects including a secondary cancer (breast cancer) nine years later. Shortly after my breast cancer treatment ended, my youthful, seemingly healthy mother was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer and passed a year later. I have lived the cancer experience as a patient and a family member/ caregiver and understand both sides. Life after treatment is often challenging emotionally and physically and there is a gap in providing needed support. I don’t consider cancer a gift as it is not something I would ever want to give to someone. Rather, I view cancer as an opportunity; one I received at an early point in my life to live intentionally, understanding how things can change at any moment. I live without regrets, fully understanding the gift and fragility of life.
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18 Responses to 25 Life Lessons From a Two-Time #Cancersurvivor

  1. Linda Kane says:

    Great & insightful as always !!


  2. Shari says:

    Thanks Linda for your comments- as always!


  3. Ronny Allan says:

    Live this post so much I might reblog it! Thanks


  4. Ronny Allan says:

    sorry ‘Love’ not ‘Live’ 🙂


  5. Ronny Allan says:

    Hi Shari – can I have permission to present your blog on my site with full credit to you and links back to your site etc? I’d also like to use the picture you’ve used in this post as the leadin? A bit like what anti-cancer club did?

    (your top 5 links now work OK!)


  6. Shari says:

    Thank you Ronny. Would love to have you share my blog!


  7. Pingback: 25 Life Lessons From a Two-Time Cancer Survivor « Ronny Allan - Living with Neuroendocrine Cancer

  8. Hi Shari, you are the first person I have heard of that has had two different cancer diagnosis besides my daughter. She was dx with pheochromosytoma at 19. Then with further testing a month later found she also had diffused sclerosing variant of papillary thyroid cancer. These are both treatable but not curable. Since they both had spread to her lymph nodes. But she’s now 25 and is being seen at the NIH in Bethesda Maryland. And has been cancer free for 5 years. She will have to be seen every year for the rest of her life since these cancers can spread.
    I really enjoyed reading your article and I’m going to pass it along to my daughter.
    Thanks again it’s nice to know even though you and my daughters cancers are different she’s not alone. P.S. I know Ronny thru his posts on Facebook as my daughters cancer is a NET tumor that he writes about.


    • Shari says:

      Thank you for your comments Bettyanne. I am sorry your daughter is going through all of this but glad she is doing well. I also know what it like to be a young adult diagnosed with cancer and it can be a lonely place. Your daughter is not alone- one of the things that really helped me was meeting other young adults who had cancer and concerns unique to a young person. Thanks again for sharing your thoughts.


  9. Pingback: 25 Life Lessons From a Two-Time #Cancersurvivor – sharlarblog

  10. Sarah Coletti says:

    This is so beautiful, Shari! Live the life you love and love the life you live!


  11. Pingback: Top 5 Blog Posts 2017 | Life According to Somebody

  12. Monica Hardy says:

    Thank you for sharing! I needed this!


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