Friday, 27 April 2018

SURVIVOR GUILT




The observance of ANZAC day evokes many sentiments and memories for people immediately connected with relatives, friends and survivors of war.

This date in our calendar brings different memories to mind for me, there is no disrespect, only a time of regret and sadness that lives were lost.

I fought a very different battle and war, but being human we are scarred with the battle. A battle is fought with life at stake and surviving the physical environment in which we live in, at the time war is declared. It is all part of being an emotional-spiritual being traveling through life’s events; it affects our DNA and memories can be evoked and triggered any time.

Photo by Kaboompics .com from Pexels


Healing the emotional scars is a huge positive. But it won’t stop the memories or triggers, which will transport your mind back into the past where the memories remain. These memories help a person - gain wisdom when taking time and reflecting. All memories and experiences play a large part into changing and developing your belief system and philosophy on life. How else do we grow?


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Writing about one of the parts which haunted me on and off over many months especially around the 4 - 7 year survival mark was the guilt of being a survivor. I had left the medical system and was entirely responsible for what I would and wouldn’t accept in my life. Especially environmental factors, which were perceived as harmful or showed any form of threat. This amounted to physical, emotional, mental or spiritual threats of any kind.

Remember, I had become a recluse for a reason. Partly to block out any of the scare tactics or negativity surrounding peoples beliefs in surviving cancer, and what they considered would or wouldn’t work.

When learning from the news reports about Farrah Fawcett and Patrick Swayze losing their battle after the cancer diagnosis. I had started carrying Survivors Guilt and asked “Why did they die and I haven’t?” “Why are so many people dying, but I haven’t?”

Remembering those who have fallen.


I studied the underlying factors and observed, what other people were doing, and the decisions they made once diagnosed. It became very pronounced and evident the differences in their lives and mine.

At some time we all received our diagnosis of cancer, whether it is just at the early stages, or at the terminal stage. We received that message. What we do after receiving that message comes down to how badly you want to survive, and what beliefs and messages from others, you let into your life. For many bowing to peer pressure from loved ones through fear seals many peoples fates.

The only advice I can offer....is don’t make a decision based on someone else’s fear. They alone must face their fears, you have a much larger battle to fight and must do whatever is right for YOU!

The spiritual lesson I was to learn was that I had started at a level playing field with everyone else when receiving the diagnosis. Eventually, I learnt to release my guilt… where they lost the battle but I continued to win. I could not and would not feel guilty for somebody else’s decision; they had made for their life. Neither did I become complacent with this knowledge.

I saw waste and travesty of human life, this then was the spiritual learning and wisdom brought into my life about my survival. I can’t change the past, but I can influence the future.

Each day I am grateful, and I stay strong!

Karen