Written by Patricia Darwish
The say everything happens for a reason. I beg to differ after going through my journey with cancer. I believe everything happens to make you your best. There are no secrets as to why we are tested in life. With every struggle, illness, and hardship, life is teaching us to become the best that we can be.
I promised to be as raw and honest with the readers about my journey. I didn’t live the easiest life the last three years; but it’s worth noting that these last three years have been the best I’ve experienced yet because it allowed me to grow. My mind, awareness, devotion, and my self-love grew stronger and stronger with every speed bump I endured.
I’m not going to lie, I questioned Allah’s (SWT) reasoning on why things happened the way they did. I went through a period of time that I felt Allah (SWT) didn’t love me and felt like He was constantly testing me. Through it all, I came to realize that Allah (SWT) loves me more than anything in the world. He only put me through this test to help me understand what self-love really meant.
It took an ugly divorce, losing my home, losing my business that I built from ground up – and finally being diagnosed with cancer to finally realize I needed to find self-love. With it came love and appreciation for Allah (SWT), our creator. Each person has their own lessons and journey. It’s true when they say your faith is tested during the curve balls thrown at you. As we all know, having faith during times of contentment is the easy part. It’s when things get shaken up that you start to ask yourself do I really have faith?
Faith and love are synonymous to each other. We can’t have faith without love. When you fear like I did for so many years, my faith was a facade. It wasn’t real. Now I know the difference and my love and faith is stronger than ever. I don’t live in fear anymore. That’s the biggest lesson I learned through this journey – I live with love and faith rather than fear.
I learned many things during this time, but I want to leave you with two powerful words that apply to everyone: Encouraged and inspired. Be encouraged and be inspired. When you find yourself struggling with difficulties, ask yourself, “What am I supposed to learn from this?” Struggles are simply an obstacle that forces a person out of their comfort zone. Most people normally don’t react when faced with struggles because they don’t want to take responsibility for their life. But isn’t that the point? In life, aren’t your triumphs emerged when you push yourself to do what you feel may be impossible….to lean…to grow?
I was out of my comfort zone many times and I gave in to the struggle and let it win. At times I was depressed and upset at the world. Even in the beginning of my cancer treatment, I gave in to the disease. I was a victim. It’s not easy to take yourself out of the comfort zone because it’s easier to give in than to fight.
Silence taught me to reflect on my true passion and meaning of life. I flipped my life from victim to warrior because I learned to love myself. I refused to die while living. I learned to invest in myself, in my passion and find my true purpose in life. We all have a purpose and it’s up to each person to seek it. Life wouldn’t be fun if we were given our life in a book form when we were born. Instead we are given a blank book to write our journey until we meet our Creator. Through this, cancer opened my eyes and forced me to reclaim my life.
There is a time set for each person to grow. Although my experience was troubling, I found myself and healed all the open wounds from my past. It was this process that helped in healing my soul. An amazing thing happened once I reclaimed my life and my self-love – once I made peace within myself – My medical scans, after years of treatment and prayer and self-discovery finally came back clear. As of today, I am cancer free.
Be encouraged and inspired; life isn’t logical – it’s magical. With my journey I’ve learned to write my own story. It’s been a pleasure and honor in writing about my journey to Muslim Girl. Thank you for all your support.
Patricia Darwish has chronicled her life journey in her fight against cancer. She shares this with you in hopes that she can break down the walls of shame from talking about this disease. It is through her journey that she hopes she is able to reach out to some of you who might be going through the same struggles. This is her final installation of her journey battling cancer. We here at Muslim Girl pray for her continued good health and wish her a long life of joy, family love, and good cooking!