Proving Your Pain

Today I called an airline for a refund on a flight I had scheduled prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. It was quite an ordeal.

In November 2019, I bought tickets to travel to Austin, TX, in May 2020. I had no clue that I would be diagnosed with breast cancer weeks later, how expensive cancer be as I worked to improve and maintain my quality of life, how challenging it would be to interact with medical providers and loved ones, how much pressure it is to take care of others even when I needed care, how the COVID-19 pandemic would intersect with my cancer and fertility treatment, how emotional freezing my eggs would be, and how George Floyd’s murder would place the United States’ racism under a magnifying glass in ways that reminded me of the ways others and myself have experienced racism in this country.

Continue reading

Racism Is a Public Health Crisis

Photo from Flickr

Almost two and a half months ago, this article on racism being a public health crisis was published on Boston.com. The journalist Dialynn Dwyer quoted leading experts and hospitals such as the Dean of Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, the President of Massachusetts Medical Society, Boston Medical Center, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Continue reading

Where Are the Black Perspectives?

George Floyd. Breonna Taylor. Tony McDade. Ahmaud Arbery. Atatiana Jefferson … Charleena Lyles, Korryn Gaines. Philando Castile. Sandra Bland. Freddie Gray. Michael Brown, Natasha McKenna … Trayvon Martin … Rodney King … Emmett Till. 

You may be familiar with some of these names more than others. We do not know about you, but we cannot accept this list getting longer.

Continue reading

Lunch with Lindsay: Schools During a Pandemic and Allyship During a Movement

In case you are wondering where I have been for the past two weeks, I have been active. I might not have been active on this website, but I have been active. Like many of you, I have been dedicating my time to my day job, exercise that is never frequent enough, napping, and honestly doing “nothing.”

When I say “nothing,” I really mean resting; times are tough, and we all need to practice self-care. If you follow this blog regularly, you know that I am no stranger to talking about this topic and recently covered the importance of it in Lunch with Lindsay: Supporting Black Lives Matter and Practicing Self-Care.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading