Onward Productions, Inc.

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Erin, a cancer survivor, is a dedicated Cancer Coach and advocate for those living with cancer, devoted to anyone and everyone dealing with a cancer diagnosis.​​​​​​​

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I love the quote by Maureen Killoran, “Stress is not what happens to us. It's our response TO what happens. And RESPONSE is something we can choose.”

For some reason stress seems to be the norm these days. During this holiday season, marketing of violent games for children is not quite the marketing that went on with GI Joe, Cops and Robbers, or Charlie’s Angels. Our kids’ imaginations have been hijacked; and, society has implemented a full court press sensual pitch competing for our children’s visceral response – specifically the visual and auditory – desensitizing them to all things negative. An overwhelming number of high school students on high blood pressure meds is deemed acceptable. And if you’d like a dose of pessimistic overload, just turn on the news—that’ll  keep ya hoppin’ as you shop for sure.

Is it all everybody else’s fault? Are parents just as much the victims of this craziness as the kids? Should grown men and woman of high standards keep pointing at those establishments and everyone else while shaking our heads back and forth…tsk…tsk…tsk? Hell NO!!!

Life’s too short to be manipulated like some kind of automaton. Capitulating who we are little by little is stress inducing and a sign of weakness. Co-dependence is becoming more and more prevalent. That, or we as a society are becoming more and more aware of its existence; and we’re continuing to learn just how destructive it can be. We CAN mindfully choose what we’d like to purchase and monitor when it comes to what our children watch and play at home. We CAN do our best to create an environment of open communication with our kids to help reduce their stress and fear. We CAN turn the television off when we feel as if we’ve heard enough. We CAN do this without the nod of approval from anyone else. We can do this for our children, and we can do this for ourselves.

Here are a couple of websites worth checking out:

  1. Dr. Bernie Siegel – “Defeat Stress - Our Most Treatable Health Hazard”: http://berniesiegelmd.com/2011/08/defeat-stress-our-most-treatable-health-hazard/
  2. Dr. Heather Manley – “StressFreeKids.com”: http://www.stressfreekids.com/9142/reduce-stress-boost-immune-systems

When I was diagnosed with cancer twenty-six years ago at age 25, I went from stressed-out and unassertive to stress-free and fearless. At the time I was unaware of my stress and apprehensive nature. That was my norm. However, after facing the Grim Reaper and saying, “You need to leave.” my senses were awakened. My way of thinking changed. That’s not to say I never experience stress or fear. Of course I do. The difference post diagnosis and surviving cancer is now as I experience stress and/or fear I work through whatever is making me anxious – as opposed to just existing in that state, trying to manage it.

 Here is an excerpt from my book, The Will to Live: The Perks of Cancer Through the Eyes of a Survivor:

“Another aspect of this ‘new beginning’ perk is that it allowed me to do things at my own pace—a pace that suited my needs. That in itself was a stress reducer. How often do we get the chance to set our own pace? We live in a world of time frames and deadlines, and are bombarded by expectations and demands. Now, I got to take that deep breath and that big step back. I took a good, long, hard look at the big picture—the panoramic view—to see what was rushing me through life. True health requires both a healthy body and a positive mind. As time passed, I realized it was all up to me. As I took charge of my life, it became increasingly a time of joy, rest, and renewal—ideal circumstances for a new beginning.”

So, as this year comes to an end and we embrace 2018, I’d like to wish all of you much love, health, fun, faith, laughter, positive energy, great character, prosperity, happiness, peace, and joy. Let’s focus on what’s right with our lives as we deal with the challenges. Let’s have a clear sense of moderation, a deep bond with our mind, body and spirit, a healthy connection with each other—and , let’s do our best to respond appropriately to whatever comes our way.

Live ONWARD with great character and a smile!