When my sister, Pam, was diagnosed with what she called “Sixty-Five Roses” (Cystic Fibrosis) at age four, I promised I would die with her. Instead, she taught me how to live. I have survived her loss—and many others—by remembering the five pillars of her legacy. I’d like to share them with you.
The Five Pillars of Pam’s Legacy
1. We can’t control life by being afraid of it.
So often we make our decisions from a place of fear. Fear separates us from our abilities. It does not protect us, nor will it alter an outcome. Being afraid is natural, but acting out of fear is not the same as using your survival instinct. When we choose to move forward despite our fear, our abilities are empowered, our faith is restored, and our hopes are renewed.
2. The only true power we have is the power to choose how to respond to what life sets before us.
We are not defined by our circumstances, but by our possibilities. When we cannot change what life sets before us, we are challenged to change ourselves. At any given moment we can choose despair or hope, revenge or forgiveness, fear or faith. The choice is always ours to make, and therein lies our power.
3. Joy is possible every day—no matter what.
No matter what our circumstances, if we take the chance and opportunity of seeking out beauty in the world around us, there are moments in every day that can be treasured. These moments of joy may be small, but they are powerful. If you can’t find the beauty and joy in your day, create it.
4. There’s a difference between giving up and surrendering.
Giving up is an act of anger or despair. It implies there’s still some fight left, some unfinished business to complete. Surrender is a release, a letting go. There is peace and contentment in knowing there is nothing more to give or receive. Surrender can only be accomplished with forgiveness and love.
5. Never give up!
Become a warrior on behalf of your own life!