What You Can Learn from Cancer Survivors

Six days ago, I went on a long walk to the beach and green space in my community. Consistently, I was frustrated by the people not wearing a mask or social distancing when they came near me. I vented my frustrations in an online group for breast cancer survivors and wrote this:

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Lunch with Lindsay: Reflecting on Life After Juneteenth, US History in Schools, and Screening Practices at Bars

More than a week ago, I created another video titled Lunch with Lindsay: Public Acknowledgment of Juneteenth, US History in Schools, and Screening Practices at Bars. I did not post it on this website right away because 1) I was busy with other things, and 2) I needed time to process the conversation.

As you will hear in the video that I posted above, my friends and I were observing many employers and companies acknowledge Juneteenth for the first time. Companies across industries were figuring out how to properly acknowledge and/or celebrate this holiday in a time where they are determining what it means to foster a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment for all people, particularly Black people.

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What Is Your Guiding Light?

Photo from Flickr

On and off since my breast cancer diagnosis, I have not been sleeping well. When I went on leave to focus on my recovery from surgery, I had more time to focus on making sleep and other basic self-care habits a priority.

After my leave ended, I started radiation and returned to work within a day of each other. Again I had to learn new sleeping patterns as my daily schedule had drastically changed within only a couple days.

Then my radiation ended, and I had to readjust my daily work schedule and relearn new sleeping patterns. It is as if my body does not know how much to rest because it does not know what to expect.

My body sure was jolted by recent stories of Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and most recently Rayshard Brooks.

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Lunch with Lindsay: Work, Social Media, White Supremacy, Systemic Change, Global Movements, Elections, and Parenting During a Pandemic

If you couldn’t tell by now, the titles for my blog posts are getting really long. There is so much to discuss in the world that short titles do not seem fitting anymore.

When I first started Unfiltered Snapshot five years ago, you could tell by my earlier posts that it was meant to serve as a place for advice. The first post is titled Are You Really Looking for Advice? The tagline originally was “Raw Advice for Real Life.” That was the intention.

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Lunch with Lindsay: Supporting Black Lives Matter and Practicing Self-Care

Is it just me, or did last week feel pretty long?

Actually, if you are like many people in my social circles who have been heavily engaged in the active work of racial justice, the last few decades have felt extremely long.

I both am encouraged to see more people fighting for racial justice—especially Black lives—in ways I have not seen in my lifetime, and I also am frustrated that this journey to progress is both so long and mentally and emotionally taxing for those involved. This is why when I saw the NPR Code Switch piece titled A Decade of Watching Black People Die, I thought to myself, “A decade? JUST a decade?” I decided not to listen to it.

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Lunch with Lindsay: Talking Protests, Race, LGBTQ Issues, Cancer, Mental Health, Spirituality, and More

We did it again. My friend Becky and I created another Lunch with Lindsay video yesterday since our Monday lunch got interrupted with the installation of my AC by the maintenance man.

I specifically wanted to have a talk in which I compared my thoughts and experiences with cancer to those with racism. While that was a part of the dialogue, you will find out in the video that a text I received right before we were about to record our video ended up shifting my attention to other aspects of current protests against racial injustice. (If you want to learn more about what I originally wanted to discuss, read If Racism Were a Cancer.)

In our very organic and unscripted conversation, we grappled with protests, race, LGBTQ issues, cancer, mental health, spirituality, military, and more. If you watch the whole video above, you can observe how my friend and I truly give our unedited perspectives.

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If Racism Were a Cancer

I didn’t sleep well last night. Today I will start a new segment of treatment for breast cancer, and I feel emotional about how my body, spirit, and mind will respond to treatment. I’m crying as I write this because I’m both nervous of the effects and also grateful to have access to healthcare. With that said, RACISM IS WORSE THAN CANCER. In the past few days, racism has caused me more sorrow than cancer.

Image from Flickr

When I found out I had cancer, nobody asked me what I did wrong or how bad the cancer was before showing me compassion and wanting justice in my healthcare. When someone experiences racism, there is always someone who needs to evaluate how bad the situation is before determining if the victim is “worthy” of compassion and justice.

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Lunch with Lindsay: Processing Racial Injustice in the US During a Pandemic

If you’re like me, you have been enduring a wide range of thoughts and emotions for the past week.

George Floyd.

Breonna Taylor.

Tony McDade.

Ahmaud Arbery.

The incident with Amy Cooper and Christian Cooper.

I don’t even need to write in full sentences. Many of you know most, if not all, of the names I listed.

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How Close Does Pain Need to Be to Impact Your Spirituality?

Last week I had a couple conversations with friends who were contemplating the impact that the pandemic was having on their spirituality.

Photo from Flickr

That’s not surprising. Whether someone is enduring a personal or global crisis, it’s not unheard of to have spiritual questions in the process. I should know. I’ve been through a wide array of thoughts, emotions, and questions since I started Saying Goodbye to My Body (As I Know It) with my breast cancer diagnosis. Over the past few months, I’ve replayed the chain of events that led to my diagnosis. Upon receiving antiquated and unhealthy advice that society gives breast cancer patients and survivors, I’ve managed hurt and anger while seeking both community care and self-care. As I’ve confronted the largest medical bills of my life, I’ve rethought the way gift giving and generosity are perceived in society. All of this mental processing is just what I call January.

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When Looking Out for Ourselves Isn’t Enough

The other day, I tried to find an old post of mine on Facebook in which I mentioned MLK. I didn’t find what I was seeking, but I found another instead. Strangely enough, this post does not mention Martin Luther King, Jr., MLK, or any variation of his name, but the powers of Facebook pulled it up for me anyway. This is a post from November 10, 2016.

Move On Up #2

Move On Up #2: Photo from Flickr

The post received 24 likes and five loves, 11 comments, and one share.

In one of the comments, my friend wrote, “This is worthy of a Medium post.”

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