“Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this too, was a gift.”– Mary Oliver
Sometimes the gifts we need the most do not come wrapped in the packages we think they should.
Looking at the cactus pictured to the left, decorated with Christmas stockings, does not quite put me in the holiday spirit in the same way as I felt in earlier years. Back then, when I lived on the East Coast and my children were young, we used to cut down a fresh tree.
The smell of fresh pine permeated the house when we brought the tree home, and the anticipation of decorating later as a family was an event that brought great contentment. Those are all fond memories of a different life stage, one that tugs at my heart each holiday season.
Yet, this cactus is representative of my new life here in the desert, after becoming an empty nester. The cactus stands on the patio of the Grotto Café in Cave Creek, Arizona, where I just completed my book Cancer as a Love Story: Developing the Mindset for Living.
My book is one of those packages that is not quite wrapped in the ways one might expect. Take the title, Cancer as A Love Story, for example. Cancer is a scary word to many, causing some to run from such a book. Yet, because most of us know someone whose life has been touched by cancer, it was important to include the name of the disease in the title.
Yet, if you delve inside, you will discover only the beginning parts relate directly to a cancer diagnosis. The majority of the book is geared towards helping anyone create a new mindset for living a life of optimal health, vibrancy, fulfillment, joy and unlimited possibilities.
I intentionally introduced the book last month, prior to Christmas (against the advice of many who did not think the holiday season was an ideal time to launch a new book). I did so because I see Cancer as a Love Story as a gift of love and hope, a perfect holiday present that lasts far beyond the Christmas season. It is a TOOL FOR LIFE.
Here are a just a few snippets of feedback from early readers:
- “A real page-turner I could not put down.”
- “So much more than a personal memoir; it is a wisdom companion.”
- “An amazing gift to any reader, hungry for wholeness, to receive. Gail gracefully balanced the slippery tensions of stability and change with wit and heart.”
For cancer patients specifically, the book helps them gain the mindset to extend longevity. That mindset is critical as attitude contributes more to health than genetics or treatments, according to a study shared at The Mind Body Program for Cancer at Massachusetts General Hospital, which I attended for three months.
The intimate, five-year journey shared within also contains other gems of insights I gained from my wake-up call after being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012. These include:
- Forgive everyone, including yourself (as resentment and other toxic emotions held within contribute to disease).
- Pause (do not make rush decisions; give space for a new beginning to be created).
- Seize the day and take the risks that allow you to SAY YES TO LIFE!
- Find your happy place. Environments matter.
- Feed your soul and body nutrients. Words matter. What kind of thoughts do you give your mind to ponder? And, what kinds of food do you give your body to replenish and thrive?
Some of the best-liked parts of the book have been the many sidebars of “tips,” from diet and exercise suggestions to resources for creating optimal health and emotional states of well-being.
If you are looking for a unique gift to purchase, one that can impact a life long-term, please consider ordering a signed copy of my book. Email me today at firstname.lastname@example.org for details and I can send your book out in time for the holidays. Quantity discounts are available for orders of 10 or more books. I also tuck inside the back of the book a handout on tips for extending longevity.
Thank you for your support. I wish you and yours many gifts of love and hope this holiday season.
Stay open to the way your presents are packaged, or how your life may be rerouted. A cactus decorated with Santa hats was never in my life plan.
Yet, relocating to Arizona brought me many of the resources that added extra depth to my book, and gave me a new canvas of perspective from which to create my own new mindset for living.
With joy, gratitude, and a heart filled of warmth for all of you,
Gail Kauranen Jones is an intuitive coach, gifted wordsmith and inspiring teacher who has been leading others through transformation for more than twenty years. She is the author of two books, Cancer as a Love Story: Developing the Mindset for Living, and To Hell and Back…Healing Your Way through Transition. Both books were met with rave reviews on Amazon and elsewhere.
She recently appeared as a guest “worthiness coach” on CBS TV’s award-winning talk show The Doctors and on Sirius FM Radio. Her articles and “tips” on worthiness have also appeared several times in Maria Shriver’s Sunday Paper.
She has taught many leading-edge workshops at top spas and wellness centers. She now leads Zoom group coaching programs and is a guest speaker at many related events.
Gail lives a passionate and simple life writing, hiking, connecting in meaningful ways, aligning in joyful collaboration and thriving in nature.