A BROAD, ABROAD WITH A BLOG, ✈

Hello, my shining moonbeams. It’s been a minute. Within that minute I have entered what I feel to be a new phase in my life, a freeing phase that is catapulted by happiness. For nearly a month, I spent time across the pond and rediscovered my life and the things I want out of it.

To start off, wow. Can I just say – I LOVE ENGLAND! I’ve always known that and I had been there times before, but this time felt different. As most of you know, if you follow my story, I have been on travel lock down since my cancer diagnosis in the summer of 2013. By nature I am a jetsetter. I enjoy being in unknown places, without being attached to my “real” life and the troubles within. When I travel, there is a certain romance to it, a freedom that allows you to be whomever you want and for me, that is living without a terminal illness. I’m able to go back to being me; an adventurer with thirst in my blood for worldly experiences. When I was diagnosed, I felt that one of the biggest losses to having cancer was the fact that I could no longer be as free as I wished to be. My citizen of the world passport would no longer apply and I’d be stuck doing treatment after treatment without an escape. My escape had become writing. If I were no longer going to be able to leave and experience life, then I’d write about it, which I have.

This year, 2015, I vowed to myself that it would be different than the last two, that I would yet again spread my wings and live a little. In the beginning of the year I approached my Doctor and pleaded for some independence from my chemotherapy week after week, to which she obliged and advised that 2015 could be my year of travel with chemo squeezed in between. It was the best news I had heard in quite some time and immediately booked a trip to Hawaii with Steve-O and planned the trip for Nan and I go travel to the UK together to attend my beautiful cousin’s wedding and share laughs and love with the family over there that we don’t get to see often enough.

The trip was so important to me and I wanted to ensure that I soaked everything in. My Nan in her very own way was my wish-granting factory, as she made the trip happen. Being that we were returning to her home town, I was fortunate enough to visit her previous homes, where she grew up, the house she was born in, the hospital she had my Mum and Auntie Bev in, where my Granddad went to college, where the two of them were married and so much more. Being able to experience England through her eyes was more than my hearts desire and something I will never be able to thank her enough for.

There were endless amounts of stories, laughs, fish and chips, tea and best of all time with family on both my Nan’s side and my Granddad’s side.   My roots are in full force over there and it was lovely to get to know that side of myself so much more. The posh wedding of my cousin, which we attended, has built memories that will last a life time, as well as traveling to Chester, Liverpool and all over the Wirral with my cousin’s and their other halves, of course also visiting London with the best company and seeing each and every friend and family member. Howls were had, love was expressed and England will forever hold the key to my heart. Quite literally, as Nan and I locked our love on Albert Dock in Liverpool and threw the key into the River Mersey. Our loved ones can continue to visit us in Liverpool, even though we may not physically be there, our spirit will always remain.

Since I’ve been back I have been reliving each moment in my head and finding it difficult to write about. My time spent there was so special, that it is difficult to express. I feel rejuvenated and feel I have a new sense of direction for my life.   Suddenly gears have started moving upon my return and from that, fresh goals have emerged. I’m super excited about the future and what it holds and as things get closer, I’ll share more deets.

In the meantime, check out some photos from my trip and watch out for some upcoming projects and collabos. Big Kiss x.

Follow me on Instagram for daily updates: bestillmyheartblog

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Love, Britt x

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Normality…

At this point, I am sure you’ve all realized that I am terrible at keeping promises; i.e. updating my blog regularly as vowed. I wish I were here to tell you that I was living life on the wild side, out there in the world doing once in a lifetime things, but instead of that I’ve been doing just the opposite; I have been living  life in normalcy.

Normalcy is something that for a while was far out of my reach. It felt as though that anything “normal” left the day of my diagnosis, which it did in a way. Yet, now I am discovering more and more normality. I’ve been keeping quite busy- spending time with family, friends, throwing my husband a dirty-thirty pool party and continuing to be inspired by everyday things that cross my path. Although I haven’t been writing much as of late, my inspiration for general things has been transcendent. My mind somehow has been opened wide and I feel as though I am experiencing every fiber of what life is about; to be happy, even if that means being normal.

While still working on my book about my journey with cancer, I am a little “cancer-ed” out at the moment.  I suppose that is in some way a good thing, cancer is no longer consuming all of my thoughts.  That said, I will be taking a brief break from that and will also be starting a fictional novel. Updates on that to come!

On another note, tomorrow is my third chemo round (2.3).  So far this journey with the levels of posion have not been terrible.  Certainly not wonderful, or what I look forward to every other week for 3 day each time, but it’s all about mind over matter.  This time I have gone into it knowing what to expect and essentially showing it whose boss in this situation.  After all, it is my body- why shouldn’t I be in charge?  The symptoms have been minimal, the regular aches and pains, increase in neuropathy (you’d think I ought to be used to that by now) and then some night sweats, which I had never experienced prior.  Needless to say, I am grateful that the side effects are bearable and I am just plugging along, enjoying life.

As this particular blog is semi-all-over-the-place, I will share some pictures from Steve’s 30th Birthday party this past weekend, as well as a challenge, taking place on Facebook regarding positivity and gratitude. I challenge all of you to do the same, even if not on social media, but for yourself, to take a minute to reflect on what you’re thankful for and/or positive things happening in your life.

Cheers- talk soon xx

Steve's 30th

“Holy Shit You’re Old” – Compliments to #UrbanOutfitters for the banner ♡

Steve's 30th

FLOATS, FLOATS, FLOTS and gigantic balloons. This picture is dreamy!

Steve's 30th

Vixens

Steve's 30th

Who doesn’t love a pineapple dressed up in flamingo sunnies?!?!

Steve's 30th

Sunset

Steve's 30th

BIGGGGGG

BEST.CAKE.EVER CRED:  Allison Langa

BEST.CAKE.EVER
CRED: Allison Langa

No he's not naked!

No he’s not naked!

Piñata

Piñata

Steve's 30th

Candy and shooters!

Steve's 30th

Reunited at last!

Steve's 30th

My love ♡

Steve's 30th

#creepy

Steve's 30th

Fireball Whisky

Steve's 30th

Auntie Bev ♡

Steve's 30th

Positivity Challenge:

Positivity Challange

Love, Britt x

Fear is for Jerks.

Lets do this

As this busy week begins, I have the opposite of world problems running through my mind. What am I going to wear to my dear friend’s Birthday dinner on Friday? Or, the semi buyer’s remorse for the small fortune that I spent at Urban Outfitters over the weekend and how I am going to get my hair done come tomorrow with my Stylist. Though, on Tuesday night, after I have watched The Real Housewives of Orange County (RHOC) and rest my head on the pillow, I’ll know that it’s a must to set my alarm for 7:30am so I can begin my 2.0 crossing with chemotherapy. That’s right, my cancer is active again and in my absence from keeping up with the blog, I’ve been balancing out my mental happiness that has returned, along with the pains of knowing in my gut, cancer has once again preceded me.

I’ve been an awful blogger, plain and simple. But, in my late nonappearance of cancer, also came an absenteeism of my happiness, as I have written about in past blogs. Consequently, I have spent the last few months showing all too well that I am human and the core of my humanism has awkwardly been present. This being from losing my $#!^ and checking myself in and out of a psychiatric ward, flying off the handle at my poor husband and ultimately, foolishly, considering to off myself due to the deep blues after my first year battling cancer and treatment came to a head. Fortunately, after a couple of very long and grueling months, I found myself on the other side of the blues and in due course created my own hues of sunshine and rainbows. Beginning with myself, I searched deep within me to find my bliss. I thought deeply about the things that made me sad and tried to find ways to change them.

It’s been rather difficult for me to be inspired to write my blog as of late. Perhaps it is because I have been too busy living my life out in the world and the thought of spending my time behind a computer screen seemed less attractive. Yet, I am sure that in the coming months, with my second bout of chemotherapy, I will have oodles to discuss. Assuming my experience this time around will be similar, I will hopefully skate by without losing any of my hair, avoid having an intimate relationship with the porcelain thrown and my gag reflexes and still be able to maintain my new found satisfaction with life, as well as upholding my social life, for that is truly what keeps me pepped up. Without fail, I know that I will be sluggish, tender and additionally will have to avoid my unconditional bond with popsicles, including anything cold for that matter.

This go around, I know what to expect. I am not frightful, nor am I weary of the side effects. In fact, I was discussing my dread for chemo with my “A” (Allison) and she had asked what was different about this time and why I had used the word dread. My response was a few things; not being able to color my hair regularly due to the chemicals and chemo not agreeing with one another, the fact that I will not be able to go on my BIG trip abroad come September and lastly, in a less vain sense comparatively, a second stint of chemo will most likely leave me even less fertile, therefore my chances of biologically having a baby are becoming even more slim. Clearly there are certainly negative results with going back on chemotherapy and it was a difficult decision for my lovely and brilliant Oncologist to make. The woman in charge of my quality of life fears that by once again starting chemotherapy, I won’t be able to revel in the young years of my life. Yet, in spite of everything considered, without going back on chemotherapy per my Oncologist’s recommendation, I may not have a life to continue. It’s become very apparent that cancer is not exiting my life, nor will it ever. However, to whatever degree, I see the positive in all of this and can only hope for the best and prepare for the worst.

Lately, I have been having dreams of death, flashes in my head during the waking hours and yet again; death has become something that is at the forefront of my mind. My goal is to remain a fugitive of passing and fight with all of my might to once again gain control over the beast inside of me; my worst enemy. I may not ever be able to fully escape cancer and that I have accepted, but perhaps I will continue to remain in attack mode to truly find out why and what the purpose of all of this is. Within the last year I have learned a ton about myself, as I have shared with you in the past, but nonetheless, that was merely the early days of my laborious journey.

As things move forward, I will share my thoughts, feelings and everything in between as I did before. It will be interesting to see the similarities and differences in my second trek, viruses my first virgin chemotherapy experience. In my best attempt I will remain fearless, as fear is for jerks. Please continue to send good vibes my way as I battle this out, again. Thank you for always providing support and lifting me up in the most difficult periods of my life. I am blessed with a wonderful family, adoring husband and the best of friends. Despite cancer, life doesn’t get much better than this.

Peace and love, always.

Love, Britt x

One Year ❝Cancerversary❞…

Cancerversary

For some reason I have been putting off writing this blog, even though I have a mountain of thoughts about this day. This time last year, I woke up to find out that I was a Stage IV, Colon Cancer patient at the age of 27.

Zig Zigler once said, “Most obstacles melt away when we make up our minds to boldly walk through them.” I believe it would be a fair statement to say that cancer is a sizable obstacle. One of which I never thought I would have to face, much less when my life was merely starting. Yet, somehow when the life changing news of my cancer was uttered, I was immediately determined to overcome this obstruction and use it as a tool to learn about life, the purpose of this result and ultimately discover who I am and what I am capable of doing.

I could drone on about all of the dire things that come along with the cancer package, but truthfully I have learned that it’s not healthy to focus on the negative, but rather the positive. It’s mind over matter. Of course not every day is hopeful and cheery, but I am certainly putting all of my energy into healing after the most difficult year of my entire life. I’ve been happy, miserable, strong, weak; yet through it all, my entire mission has been to foster positive identity building. Am I 100%? Absolutely not. Am I cured? Not quite. But more importantly, I have been afforded a quality of life and have been gifted another year to enjoy my family, my friends, my dog and my loving husband.

I wasn’t quite sure how I would feel about this day, as it quickly approached. I was certain that I would be sad and in a sense of mourning for the life that I shed the day I was diagnosed. However, it was quite the opposite. Last night I went out with my friends, enjoyed a fine evening of divine live music and contentedly got inebriated for the first time in a year. So, essentially I didn’t spend the day down and blue in bed, but rather hung over on the couch and I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

Thank you a million times over to every person that has supported me along my cancer journey in the past year. The journey will continue and I will have many more cancerversaries to come and I can only hope to be as grateful as I am today, for gratitude is everything.

Love, Britt x

Summertime Playlist

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Music has really been my saving grace, well, since forever. I put together some of my favorite tunes that I’ll be jamming to all summahhh long!

Hope you dig!

PS- New blog post tomorrow about my one year Cancerversary on 07/01!

Love, Britt x