Here it comes: Snow, snow, snow, blanketing the Northeast.
But, before we dive head-first into winter, let's look back at some of the fall pictures you sent me that have brought daily inspiration to my soul.
Along with these photographs, you shared so many stories and feelings about your pictures. The pictures and your comments have been awe-inspiring.
Why is inspiration so important? How important is it to those who have cancer or some other life-threatening illness? For me, those many days I spent in bed during my various chemo treatments and low-white-count days would have put me under if I had nothing to inspire me.
Right next to my bed, I have a bay window that looks out into my garden. Who would think that gazing at a rose can give you hope?
My girlfriend— who is also named Noreen— came by on every one of my down days, and left flowers from her garden next to my bed. Even when I was asleep, she would sneak in quietly and leave me a bouquet, (the advantages of living in California)! When you are alone and you're sick, the beauty of nature can lift your spirits.
For those of you who have friends who may be suffering, remember that a flower or a picture can bring inspiration and hope.
I have another girlfriend who would rip pictures of something beautiful from a magazine, attach it to a cardboard, and stand it up on my dresser. I loved that.
Of course, it goes without saying that family and friends who come just for a few minutes to hold your hand and smile can make a huge difference in your mood and outlook. I prefer these ideas over sending a card, as long as those friends are in town and can visit you easily.
I have taken all of your fall pictures and made a collage, which I’ve displayed on my bedroom wall. Fall is my favorite season, and although I never did make it back east this year, I have all of your pictures to inspire me.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart!
Noreen Fraser is living with Stage IV metastatic breast cancer. She is the Founder and CEO of the Noreen Fraser Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to funding groundbreaking women's cancer research. To stay in touch with Noreen, please 'LIKE' The Noreen Fraser Foundation on Facebook and follow her on Twitter. Noreen can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.