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  • Writer's pictureJulia Heck

I Want My "Life" Back

Just like all of us, I feel like I've lost a lot of the things that I really enjoyed about life with this whole Corona Virus "thing".


I felt like "life" was robbed from me when I got diagnosed and had to move back to Rochester, but this time just makes it 100 times worse.

I looked for the best when I decided it was the right move to move back. I was looking forward to spending time with my friends from high school, volunteering for Friends of Strong and really embracing all that ROC has to offer, especially those that I couldn't do back in high school (breweries, wineries, bars). I was mostly looking forward to being able to see my family way more often!


But now we're all kind of stuck... We're not going to see friends, can't go see our families, and we're definitely not going out to the bars seeing as nothing is really close to opening in NY.

It's frustrating that we're stuck here, but on my best day's I starting thinking, why don't we treat as a time to really focus on our goals. You're probably thinking-"WTF Julia, how can we do that if we aren't even allowed to go out and do anything?!"

Well, many of us live in this crazy busy world and don't take the time to slow down and focus on ourselves and now is a great time to do that!

Start every day with a walk/some time outside-Even though it's cold here in WNY, I have noticed that days that begin with a walk with Mom and Riley are the start of all good days. Something about getting that fresh air is good for the soul!

Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day-This might just be me, but I really thrive off a schedule. I've found it so helpful to keep routine and maintain a solid sleep schedule.

Discover a new hobby-I tried out watercolors for the first time! Although the first couple times were a COMPLETE bust, I quickly fell in love with it when I realized that it definitely should be called watercolor, to make it more obvious that you don't actually need much water (lol)!

Make time for yourself-My favorite part of the day is when I can sit on the couch and read or write with a cup of coffee in hand. I find it most important now that I work from home. Sometimes it's hard to find the work/life balance when your work computer is always so close, but it's so important to find that balance and separation so that you can do well at your job AND still thrive to reach your personal goals.

Make time to catch up with friends-When I say I'm STRUGGLING with not seeing my friends, that is by far an understatement. When I find time to Zoom call with my friends once a week, I am a lot happier knowing that I'm not alone. Thankfully right now we're all going through the same thing--"misery loves company", right? 😉


Which brings me to my next point:

I want my life back


There are good days and there are bad days in life. Duh. But the days where your world is totally flipped upside-down really takes the cake.

When I got diagnosed, I had no idea how much of a mind game this would be every day. I try to keep a good outlook and know that, "this too shall pass", but now the question is when? I've already been deemed a "cancer patient" for 6 months, today. It feels like a lifetime and the blink of an eye all at once.

I've moved back in with my family, stopped all travel for work, don't have my friends as close as they were and now I'm just frustrated that I've lost a lot of my independence.

I find myself dreaming of the day that I can gain that normalcy back. What a great day that will be, but I guess there it will never be "back to normal". Just like the world circumstances with COVID-19, there will be a "new normal", and to say I'm scared of that time is an understatement.

Many of the people (with cancer) that I follow on Instagram, have said that once you stop treatment, the mind games become even more prudent. You are constantly worried about if your treatment is working, you aren't going to see the doctor every week for validation, and you're immediately expected to return to who you were prior to diagnosis.

And that's not practical, this is now a huge part of my life that I will always have worry about. Although cancer will never be a past memory for me, I find comfort in the fact that this will become a new normal and we will be able to move on.

Here's to brighter days and making the most of the rainy ones!

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