God planted the seed of "The Affirmations Project" in my heart years ago. In fact, it was a few years before I was diagnosed with breast cancer. In retrospect, I think He was preparing me for what I was one day going to confront.
The first time I thought about The Affirmations Project was when I witnessed a beautiful woman struggle with her "loss of beauty" because of her battle with cancer. I witnessed her question her femininity because cancer had changed her body. I remember her frantically trying on dozens of outfits because she was going to go out on a date for the first time in a long time and thought nothing fit her right. I kept telling her how beautiful she was and how every outfit was just perfect, but that was not what she saw when she looked in the mirror. If only she could see what I saw. She truly was beautiful, and perfect in every way.
Then on March 18, 2014, I was diagnosed with cancer. Just a few days after the diagnosis, I was undergoing a double mastectomy. Cancer took my breasts, which I gladly let it take in exchange for my life. During the days immediately following the surgery I would avoid looking at myself in the mirror, I was concerned about how I would react when I saw what I thought at that time was my "mutilated body." A few days later I made myself look. I stood in front of the mirror with both eyes closed and slowly opened them. To my surprise I was not horrified at all! My immediate thought was "I am still me." That day I discovered that my breasts did not define me, that my worth was not contingent on the size of my breasts. That day I accepted and embraced my new body and my healing began.
With this project I hope to empower women to love themselves and stop the negative self-talk that defeats our spirits. Loving ourselves is the foundation to loving others. Ask yourself this question: Without loving yourself, how can you love others?