Hi! I'm Cadence

I was diagnosed with Chronic Myeloid Leukemia on February 12, 2018. This is my story.

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How yoga saved my life


Today was just so amazing it’s going to be hard to put in to words.

I woke up and went to yoga with the girls at the Pink Pearl retreat. It was the first time I had practiced yoga since I was diagnosed, which was a powerful step for me in moving forward. I had somehow mentally tied the practice of yoga, the cancellation of my yoga teacher training trip to the pain and grief of my cancer diagnosis. (Your can read my full diagnosis story here.)

I had been unable to separate them, like a terrible pavlovian connection in my mind. I hadn’t practiced yoga since the day I was diagnosed. It had been a whole year. I went from sometimes twice daily practices to nothing. It was just too painful.

Over the last year I’ve spent a lot of time reflecting on my diagnosis and how everything unfolded. I was stressed out, feeling like I needed to ‘grow up’, and had gotten to a point in my life where I felt like I had failed at something I loved. That’s what led me to believing I should pursue something else. To see that poster advertising yoga teacher training in nicaragua. To sign up, believing that becoming a yoga teacher would be my mid-life crisis saviour. To go to the doctor and have a physical for the trip. Yoga was my saviour. Yoga saved my life. But it was never meant to be my life.

I wasn’t meant to be a yoga teacher. I was meant to be a musician, just like the one I’ve been my whole life. I had let my frustration, fear and self-doubt get the best of me. I had lost sight of what mattered, what true success really was, and that being passionate about something I loved and was talented at was more valuable to me, than trying to be more financially valuable to the people that I loved- and that they would still love me for choosing that.

Many times I would make plans to go, and cancel. Sometimes I would even put the mat in the car, or drive half way there, only to turn around. It took an entire year for me, with the encouragement and support of 40 other women who understood, to get on my mat, and finally disconnect the practice of my physical body from my diagnosis and find comfort in the physically and spiritually strengthening postures of yoga. To stop letting it remind me that I had cancer. That I never got to go on that trip. That I didn’t become a yoga teacher. That I had failed at a goal I had set out to achieve.

I now realize I was never intended to achieve that goal. I was never meant to be a yoga teacher. It was simply the universe’s strange, and sometimes convoluted way to lead me down the path I was meant to. To save my life, redirect my heart and purpose, and shift my perspective in a way that will forever change the course of my life.

Sometimes we don’t always understand ‘why’ things happen. The deep complexities and sometimes seemingly coincidental ways the universe intervenes in our pathway, and not always in a positive manner can feel unsettling. We struggle to see the ‘why’ in it all. Through this experience I have learned to slowly let go of the importance of why, and leaned closer towards finding comfort and acceptance in the uncertainty of it all. In believing there truly is a reason for everything. Even if it takes years to see, or it’s not meant for us to understand. That’s what keeps me positive.

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