I did promise you another Hope post this week. This time it’s from Aaron Offord, a young man who I connected with quite recently. I was amazed by his positive outlook to life and his particular situation (I’ll leave him to tell you what it is). He has taken to blogging rather recently and his commitment to sharing his journey of hope is truly inspiring.
Aaron, thank you for your post and thank you for being such a fine example of hope!
Please visit Aaron’s blog and sign up for updates, like I have.
What does hope mean to me?
I never really put too much thought into the power of hope before a year ago. Of course at work I “hoped” to get promoted and get subsequent raises, or “hoped” for nice weather on the weekend. But that isn’t true hope. In fact, I don’t think you can even classify that as hope at all.
The true meaning of hope did not come to me until a year ago when I was diagnosed with Acute Leukemia. Those silly “hopes” disappear very quickly when you are given the news that you might die. They quickly turn into one encompassing hope, the hope to live.
The thing with Acute Leukemia is it is a nasty form of Cancer. This is because it is a Cancer of the blood, so once it is present in one spot in your body, it is everywhere in your body. This makes the treatment very aggressive and dangerous. They have to take you almost to your deathbed in order to kill off the Cancerous cells. Learning about this treatment plan magnifies the need for hope in the early days of a Leukemia diagnosis. Now you don’t only hope to survive the disease you have but also to survive this difficult treatment protocol.
But how do you achieve finding hope when faced with such a difficult situation?
For me I found hope and wisdom in Nietzche’s quote, “He who has a why to live for can bear with almost any how”. I found this quote to be life altering. I realized that by focusing on the things that I truly loved – my ‘whys’ – it would give me hope for the future and keep my spirits up despite any odds. This quote has been my main mantra and is how I have maintained hope throughout my entire leukemia journey.
~ Aaron Offord
For a more thorough discussion on this topic do check out Aaron’s post Overcoming Life’s Greatest Struggles: Lessons from History’s Greatest Survivors.