Holding on to Hope – Improbable but Not Impossible

I’ve heard before “sometimes hope is all we have.”  I believe it.  I’m an adult but, at times, have the childlike hopefulness to believe when there seems to be no reason to believe.

I got my kids some snow scooters this past Christmas, but we haven’t seen enough snow this season to use them.  Every forecast of snow came and went with only a dusting of snow.  It seemed that it might be time to put the snow scooters, and all our snow toys, in “storage” until next winter and look forward to springtime games.  My winter boots were ripped and I thought I should get rid of them, but held on thinking they could be useful in case we got that one snow enough for snow games.

winter boots

snow toys


As we approached the start of spring, with a forecast of snow, I was doubtful; thinking I should write it off like the other few almost snowstorms.  Last night, we got a little more than a dusting, but not enough for the snow toys.  I woke to clear streets and much of the same.  But, at 8am this morning, almost to the minute of the forecast, it began to snow steadily and then heavily.  By noon, we had more than enough springtime snow to use our snow toys.

snow patrol clnsnow patrol klnsnow patrol man

My kids had fun but, truthfully, me, the big kid, probably had the most fun.  A day I thought I wouldn’t see for a few more seasons arrived later than expected, but gave me the thrill and excitement that, as a child and an adult, I’ve always loved.


Meteorologists said we haven’t had a recorded spring snow like this in about 50 years.  Glad I didn’t get rid of my boots.  Glad I kept hoping.  Improbable, but not impossible.

winter snow

Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach and Reconstructionist™ chronicling life after a breast cancer diagnosis.  Sharing my musings on the life lessons I’ve learned from the wild ride of the highs, lows, ordinary and extraordinary in every day.  Living my manifesto, Soul of a Survivor, and always striving to color outside of the lines when defining my new normal.

Updating My Contacts

Today, I was going through my cellphone phonebook trying to text a friend for our almost daily text chat about the Olympics.  We are Olympic fanatics and love both the summer and winter games.  As I was quickly typing her contact, another name came up and started populating the address and I almost sent a text to the wrong person.


I’ve sent texts, thankfully “nonincriminating” texts to the wrong person before.  But, generally it’s someone n my close circle and a quick “oops” or “disregard” handles that.  However, today the text was almost sent to a former Director I worked for; someone I don’t care for at all.  I wasn’t so much concerned that I might text the wrong person but concerned that I still had this person in my contacts.

It’s a saying that you don’t burn bridges, but it goes both ways and this Director burned a bridge with me.  When my children were very young, I had a hefty roundtrip work commute and was always conscious of leaving work by a certain time to ensure my 6pm daycare and school pickups.  One wintry day, with a forecast of a snowstorm, I sat at my cubicle tracking the impending traffic nightmare.  It was noon and I searched for my Director in his office and throughout our building.  When I couldn’t find him, I sent him an e-mail and also called him and left him a voice message that I needed to leave early to avoid the potential of not picking my kids up on time from daycare.

Armed with my laptop, BlackBerry and a stack of papers, I trekked around the highway and just got on the road before the start of the storm.  I as able to pick up my kids from daycare and school which, by this time, had announced an early closing.  We came home and they played while I transformed my dining room into a remote office and finished my work day at home.

When I logged on to my computer and checked e-mail, I was surprised to see my Director’s response to my leave early e-mail.  He said that he thought I was overreacting, being dramatic and an early leave was unnecessary.  As I watched the beautiful snow fall, an ugly churning began in my stomach.  I was so concerned about the repercussions of my early departure that I could barely focus.

When I finished my work day, I sat and watched the night descend and a beautiful white snow contrast the darkening sky.  I also turned on the news full of stories of frantic parents still stuck on the highway at 8pm, having been in traffic for four or more hours trying to get to their children now well past the pickup time.  Frantic and crying parents and frustrated and agitated commuters trying to make their way home; some running out of gas, batteries drained and abandoning their cars on highways and major thoroughfares.  It quelled a bit of my anxiety as I was grateful to have avoided the horrendous commute and thought of not being able to get to my children.

When I returned to work, I never expected, nor did I get an apology or follow up discussion from my Director.  Every time a snow day came, I was more apprehensive about asking to telecommute or leave early, but always chose the option that would allow me to be both productive and ensure the safety of my children (because the two are not mutually exclusive, especially in our technologically advanced society).

So, this Director burned a bridge with me.  His lack of sensitivity to begin with and failure to be accountable for his error in response and judgement were indications that this relationship should never outlast the time I worked for him and/or this company.  I always did my job well and was professional.  I had saved my director’s number in my personal phone for instances such as the snow day, sick days and emergencies.  I have long since left that company, but for some reason let the busyness of life prevent me from deleting someone who needed to be deleted.

delete button

As always, there are lots of lessons.

  1. Follow your gut: I knew it was risky to stay at work any longer than I did and I was right to leave ahead of the storm
  2. Plan and be strategic about how you spend your time. You can’t always dictate when and where you will work, but I had a terrible commute for years and it negatively impacted my quality of life. It was even more important for me to be judicious with how I spent my time outside of work.
  3. The majority of my time spent, then and now, out of work is with family. Family first.  Quality time is so important and enriching.
  4. Update your contact list with quality professional contacts. It’s important to maintain professional contacts and reciprocity, respect and consideration are important as well.  My Director had no regard for my situation so it’s unlikely that I’d rely on him for anything in the future and there’s no need to keep in touch with him.
  5. We don’t need to keep reminders and souvenirs of negative people, energy and situations.  It’s great to learn from them and move on.  There’s no reason for someone who’s shown little regard for you to take up space in your life; mental space, physical space and space in your contacts.  Some people just don’t’ deserve your time.  Free up that space.
  6. Manage your contacts. There might be someone in there who needs to hear from you, but you’ve overlooked them because your contacts are full of extras.  Keep in touch with the ones who matter; keep the good ones close.

I just deleted my former Director’s number, e-mail and all contact information.  I see that there are some others in my contacts who no longer deserve my time.  Tonight, while I’m watching the Olympics, I’ll be deleting some folks and that’s okay because the ones who will remain are solid gold, people I’m honored to have a connection with.

Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach and Reconstructionist™ chronicling life after a breast cancer diagnosis.  Sharing my musings on the life lessons I’ve learned from the wild ride of the highs, lows, ordinary and extraordinary in every day.  Living my manifesto, Soul of a Survivor, and always strivi ng to color outside of the lines when defining my new normal.

Miami, Shells, Beauty

As I walked on the beach collecting shells, I reminisced about a previous Miami Beach trip and reflected on beauty.  I am blessed that I recently had the opportunity to travel to Miami Beach for a trip that was both business and pleasure.  However, any opportunity for me to go to the beach is pleasure.  The last time I was in Miami Beach in 2009 after I had had my mastectomy, oophorectomy and completed 16 rounds of chemotherapy.  I had started, but not finished reconstruction.  This was the trip of a lifetime with my lifelong friends at the end of almost one year of fighting breast cancer.

Miami shells 1

Miami shells 2

The fight took a toll on me mentally, spiritually and, especially, physically.  I had been at a wedding before my girls’ trip, just as I finished chemo.  I had been in a lot of weddings before where the bridesmaids had to change in a shared room.  I was never very self-conscious before, but I was extremely self-conscious and anxious as I began to change into my bridesmaid dress, working to make sure I didn’t knock my wig off or get it twisted.  I changed in a corner, turned toward a wall for “privacy”, not wanting anyone to see my awkward misshapen breasts or the bulging scarred area where I still had my mediport.  When I got to my Miami in 2009, I was still rockin’ my wig because my peach fuzz hair was growing in patchy and had me looking like a Q-Tip®, completely white.  My mediport had been removed, but left behind a scar and there were all those other scars from my mastectomy and reconstruction and scars where my drain tubes had been.  I think my discolored black nails (not painted black, but black from all the meds in my body) had started to return to their normal color.  Not the societal definition of a 39-year-old beauty queen; lots of imperfections.  I wore my wig like Linus carried his blanket, my security.  I wore outfits that could hide my scars.


Fast forward to my 2018 Miami Beach trip. Yes, I wore my first two-piece swimsuit in several years.  I wore strapless halter dresses two days in a row with no place for my mediport scar to hide.  As I walked along the seashore on the beach (hands down one of my favorite places on earth) I was doing what I do on the beach – collecting seashells.  I think seashells are beautiful.  For so many years, I’ve been predisposed to getting shells with the perfect clamshell shape and with curves and exterior ribbing.  I would always go for those that seemed intact, but not this trip.  I was drawn to some of the less “perfect” shells, those with chips, knicks and other blemishes and imperfections because of how I now embrace beauty.

Miami shells 4

Laying on the beach with the beautiful people in a society that can idolize and admire airbrushed beauty, I was at peace and comfortable in my own skin.  Throughout my battle with breast cancer, I was adjusting, trying to own this body, these changes and transformation, these blemishes and scars.  I’ve spent countless hours in the mirror looking at my “new” body.  The scars have faded over the years, but never gone away.  I’ve transitioned from wearing my scars like a scarlet letter, a badge of shame, to being unafraid of wearing outfits that show my scars and now wear it as a badge of courage, a symbol of my strength and that’s beautiful.  As I collect the shells with blemishes and imperfections, I still admire their beauty.  And, as I look in the mirror with my blemishes and imperfections, I embrace my beauty, scars and all.

Mel scar

See more of my reflections at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sy7uXmXfnKU.

Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach, Reconstructionist™ and Health and Wellness Advocate who chronicles life after a breast cancer diagnosis.  Living my manifesto,  Soul of a Survivor, and always striving to color outside of the lines when defining my new normal.

Thankful and Blessed to be Watching

Almost nine years ago, when I received my triple negative breast cancer diagnosis, my first prayer was “God, please let me watch my children grow up!”  My son was four years old and my daughter was 19 months old.  My daughter was just barely walking and talking and my son couldn’t comprehend all that was happening, but had a basic understanding that mommy was sick.  Both of my kids were in day care when I was diagnosed. 

Through the years, there have been many times when I’ve been sucked into a hectic schedule of work, busy work, kids’ activities and the fast pace of day to day life, I’m reminded to stop, pause, take a deep breath and watch – truly watch and digest what’s happening in my children’s lives and watch them grow.

This past weekend on our annual “Say Goodbye to Summer; Last Beach Weekend Before School Starts” trip, we drove to the beach.  We love the beach and take every opportunity we can, especially during the summer, to get to the beach; day trip to the beaches not far from us or a longer ride further down south – we are game.  This weekend, as we drove to the beach, my now 10-year-old daughter, napped on the drive there.  My son and I sat in the front conversing as old friends.  We talked about everything, especially him starting junior high school and his upcoming 13th birthday.  We laughed, got serious at times and had the best conversation.  The richness of that moment is so precious.  In our ride on a two-lane road, as my car slowly made its way through a grey, drizzling day, we connected in such a special way. 

Carter and mom at beach

It was a rainy day when we got to the beach.  No matter; just being by the water, hearing the ocean brings me peace.  The beach is my serenity and my sanity and being there with my kids gives me so much calm and joy. We walked on the boardwalk and slipped into our favorite candy store to pass some time. 

Candy Kitchen with kids 2017 cropped

The next day, we awoke to clouds that eventually made way for the beaming sun.  Joined by their cousins, I watched my children laugh, run, catch waves, play racquet games and fill the day with fellowship and fun. 

We got back to use Labor Day Monday to prep for school.  My daughter excitedly and anxiously awaited this morning, her first day of middle school.  Their maturity and independence was in full swing.  I had little role in their prep for the day as they laid out their clothes, made their lunches and my son awoke to his own alarm.  School drop offs and goodbyes were quick as they didn’t require any hand holding that they once did.  Their independent spirit was in full bloom.

first day of school 2017 cropped

I could be sad because they no longer cling to my leg or need that last, reassuring hug to start the day.  Or, I can look at it as a sign that my husband and I have provided the support they needed in their “younger” days and welcome and celebrate these milestones.  We’re moving on.  They’re growing up.  And, thank God, I’m blessed to be watching. 

Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach, Reconstructionist™ and Health and Wellness Advocate who chronicles life after a breast cancer diagnosis.  Living my manifesto,  Soul of a Survivor, and always striving to color outside of the lines when defining my new normal.

Congress and Senate – I am Your Preexisting Condition

When I lay on my hospital bed (many times) or in my chemo chair (many times), with tears in my eyes over the pain and despair I had, I would have to confront the urge to quit.  I was chemo exhausted and physically spent, at times, not wanting to go back to chemo or deal with anymore cancer news.  Although there were moments of doubt and times when I wanted to give up, I never did.

I’m ominously reminded of those hospital and chemo days.  I’ve been sitting watching the news crying and exhausted with all the health-care debates and seeming disregard for humanity as votes are cast and decisions seem to be made without regard to the true human toll or catastrophic consequences.  As I wrote in my letter to Representative Steve Scalise (Majority Whip) and Representative Paul Ryan (Speaker of the House), “I hope you will consider citizens like me, a triple negative breast cancer survivor, when you cast your vote on any changes to health-care legislation.  My eight years of survival, once considered a blessing, now possibly a curse as preexisting conditions are at the center of the proposed health-care bill.  I’m concerned that the proposed health-care law changes will be deleterious.”  And I’ll be honest, I’ve cried a lot over the past 24 hours.  I empathize with those on the news who speak about how their life, truly, depends on affordable care.  But, just as I’ve done in the past – weary, worn and wearing my cancer battle scars – I’m emboldened because this fight is not over.  One thing you may not know about people with preexisting conditions (you’ll learn quickly) is that we are fighters.  We’ve had to fight to survive and we know a lot about fighting!!!

It’s interesting that so many medical organizations responsible for the care and treatment of Americans opposed the American Health Care Act.  But so many of you thought it was a good idea anyway.  Oh, and by the way, I saw so much news about the American Health Care Act vote, but didn’t see the news on whether Congress voted to retain preexisting coverage for themselves and their staff.  Hopefully, this was just overshadowed by the other “celebrations” of the day.

Well, my tears are dry.  I am a preexisting condition and for every legislator who chooses to callously vote on the “better” economics of this act, I’m now your preexisting condition. You can do things like you did today, let your voicemail get full and choose not to take calls because, as your voice message stated, “it’s one of those days”.  I’ll remember all of my chemo and surgery days, all of the days wondering if I’d live to see my kids grow up and if I’d have insurance coverage to help me sustain my life to do so.  Yes, I plan to have a lot of “those days” and I’m encouraged that I’ll be joined by millions of others.

Preexisting conditions – sickness – are those things that are always around; sometimes at the forefront, sometimes in the background, but ever present.  Their presence can be annoying and irk the $*## out of you.  They can zap your energy and take a potentially good day to a day from hell.  Often, they can make life difficult at best; sometimes hellish.  My triple negative breast cancer can be considered a preexisting condition.  And, with this new legislation, there’s the possibility that I could be a person relegated to the high-risk pool of uncertainty.

I’ll be excited during your 2018 reelection bid to put you into a high-risk (election) pool.  This was never partisan, it is personal.  And I’m taking it very personally.  I am your preexisting condition.  Hello.  I won’t go away.  Preexisting condition.  Survivor.  No quit in me!!!

Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach, Reconstructionist™ and Health and Wellness Advocate who chronicles life after a breast cancer diagnosis.  Living my manifesto,  Soul of a Survivor, and always striving to color outside of the lines when defining my new normal.

Thank You POTUS 44

President Barack Obama delivers a statement on the Affordable Care Act in the East Room of the White House, May 10, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

President Barack Obama delivers a statement on the Affordable Care Act in the East Room of the White House, May 10, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

Mel with PresidentMel and Ray with VP

Mel with VP

Thank you, Mr. President, Mrs. Obama, Vice President Biden and Dr. Jill Biden.  Extraordinary job.  Phenomenal Service.   We will continue to pray for you and your families.  THANK YOU!!!

Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach, Reconstructionist™ and Health and Wellness Advocate who chronicles life after a breast cancer diagnosis.  Living my manifesto,  Soul of a Survivor, and always striving to color outside of the lines when defining my new normal.

Because I Can

Last week, I resumed my three times a week jogging routine.  Today, with temps in the 20s, I still got in my 4.5 mile outdoor run this morning.  Prior to resuming last week, I had taken a two-and-a-half-week break; initially because of a cold and then because I was thoroughly enjoying being a holiday couch potato.  I definitely value rest and relaxation (see A Restful Mind and a Recharged Spirit ).  I really enjoyed my holiday break.  So, it took me some time to get motivated and when I started back was running at a slower than normal pace.  But, I got my 3 runs in last week and plan to get them in this week, too. 

Running for me is almost addictive.  There are so many personal benefits.  I get my daily physical activity.  The health benefits of exercise are proven and I’m especially mindful of trying to help reduce my risk of breast cancer recurrence.  For me, I also benefit from the stress relief that I find during and after my run.  I solve all of the world’s problems while I’m jogging.  I’ve found it to be a fairly easy and inexpensive form of exercise since I run outside and don’t require a gym membership or treadmill.  It definitely contributes to my health and wellness.  But most of all, I do it because I can.


Not so long ago, I wasn’t jogging, but sock collecting.  I have a drawer full of hospital socks, the ones you get when you have a diagnostic test or when you’re in the hospital.  They have the slip resistant material on the bottom to keep you upright when you start walking (post surgery or post medical procedure).  Through my breast cancer survival, I’ve collected a lot of these socks and wear then around my house.  They are comfortable, but they are also a reminder of hospital stays, including my mastectomy (breast removal surgery), my oophorectomy (surgical removal of my ovaries) when sitting up in a hospital bed was a task and walking even short distances seemed almost impossible.


In addition to my hospital sock collection, I’ve also collected quite a few pair of running shoes.  For the shoes that I’ve worn out, literally to no tread, I keep them as work shoes.  In the last four years, since I’ve taken up distance running, there have only been a few weeks that I’ve taken off, mostly due to a cold or ailment.  For someone who hasn’t been disciplined in every area of my life, this is one area where I’m focused and disciplined.  I’ve completed 5 distance runs (four 10 mile runs and a half marathon of 13.1 miles).  I’ve also completed some distance walks.  I average 1 -2 distance runs annually.  I don’t run for speed.  I run for completion.  When I’m not training for a distance run, I run as part of my routine.  I’m not trying to qualify for one of the storied international marathons.  I might one day, but it’s not my goal.  I run because I can.

When I had my breast cancer surgeries and treatment, putting on a pair of socks and shoes for a walk around the block was as unthinkable as a 10-mile run.  I’ve said it many times before that as I was laying on my back in a hospital bed or sitting exhausted in my chair while I was getting chemo any activity seemed like an impossibility.

But, I kept a vision of “life after”.  I didn’t know what exactly it might look like.  I didn’t envision distance runs, but I envisioned more than laying on my back or sitting exhausted in my chair.  So, 8 years later, I run because I can. 


I’m not really making resolutions this year, but more declarations.  I’m bringing back music to my life (see Bringing Back Music to My Life in the New Year).  As a cultural tourist, I’m keenly aware of the fact that as we age we tend to become confined by cultural norms or expectations.  There are a lot of unwritten rules to follow and abide by as an adult.  We do things, mostly the fun, imaginative, adventurous stuff of our dreams, somewhat apologetically.  We put off our plans because it doesn’t seem to be the right place or time.  We do only what’s necessary and not necessarily what’s fulfilling because it’s what we are supposed to do.  But, I’m going to live the way I want to, with an even bigger vision, because I can. 

Today I will __________ because I can. 

This week I will __________ because I can. 

This month I will __________ because I can. 

This year I will __________ because I can. 


Fill in the blanks.  This year, I’m making my own rules and I’m going to live my life bigger and better than ever, full of fun and laughter BECAUSE I CAN!

What’s yours?  Please share.  I look forward to hearing from you and making 2017 a Because I Can year!

Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach, Reconstructionist™ and Health and Wellness Advocate.  Living my manifesto Soul of a Survivor and always striving to color outside of the lines when defining my new normal.

Be Careful When and Where You Park

For many, the last 1-2 weeks have been holiday, downtime or vacation.  Many are off from work and school, some have vacationed and others, hopefully at least, have reduced their workload and to do list and relaxed a little.  As I prep for return to work and my kids getting back to school, back to a busy and often extremely hectic schedule, I’m mapping out my week and planning for meetings, school events and getting my plans together.

I’ll admit that I normally am running late or just on time.  This is the result of me trying to squeeze in one last thing; a habit I’m working on changing.  With me running late, I generally find limited parking options and pull my car in wherever I can, jump out and walk/jog/run to wherever I have to be.  And if it’s a crowded meeting, I usually get the worst seat where I can’t see or hear very well.  Consequently, when my meeting is over, I often have to “remember” where I speedily parked my car.  It’s a time waster and my car is usually a bit further away from where I am because the close-up spots are “reserved” for the early comers. 


But this summer, my kids attended a new camp.  Every day, during pick-up, I’d watch the traffic pile up which created a longer wait and more difficult time to get back to the main roads to get home.  Because I had to pick up my kids before the end of my work day, I needed to get them quickly to get back to work responsibilities.  I quickly devised a plan.  I would get to camp a few minutes early to get a prime parking space.  I started parking my car in the same spot every day.  I always pulled in, turned and park in the direction headed toward my next appointment.  The space where I parked was out of the heavy traffic and allowed me to quickly pick up my kids and bypass the traffic to get on the road. 

The process was so smooth and efficient that I’m working to adopt it in my other planning.  Somewhat simple, but impactful lessons, especially as I prepare to WIN 2017.  There’s a path that I want to take.  I need to be parked in the best space that will allow me to be prepared and ready to move, sometimes quickly, in that direction.  Traveling a little earlier will allow me to avoid bottlenecks.  The best parking space has several advantages.  I’ll keep this top of mind.  Be careful when and where you park.  Moving forward.  Ready. Set. Go!


Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach, Reconstructionist™ and Health and Wellness Advocate.  Always striving to color outside of the lines when defining my new normal.


Bringing Music Back to My Life in the New Year

After a subpar childhood piano career, I resumed my piano lessons when I was 35 years old.  I remember how I jumped up and down and celebrated when the used black upright piano that I purchased was delivered to my house.  Even as the mother of a 13-month-old son, I was dedicated and likely the most disciplined I had been.  I was faithful to my lessons, my practice and focused on becoming an accomplished pianist. 


I love music and wanted to fill my home with countless piano “concerts”.  I envisioned my family sitting around the piano and Christmas tree during the holidays as I performed a list of traditional holiday favorites as well as performing concerts throughout the year where I played a variety of genres. 

As an adult, I remember nervously sitting next to kindergarteners as we prepared for our spring recital in 2008.  After the birth of my second child, this was my first recital in almost 20 years.  My emotions vacillated between excitement and frustration; excitement that I was pursuing my piano dreams and frustration that I hadn’t been a better childhood student and hadn’t mastered the piano at almost 40.  Nevertheless, I was excited to be performing a culmination of a few years of lessons that had me proud of what I had recently accomplished and further lit the fire under me to keep getting better.  Despite a few missed keys, the spring recital was great and I beamed with pride as my family and friends got to see my hard work.  Despite being a working mother of two (I had recently taken a much-needed break from corporate America), I was able to maintain my family focus while making piano lessons a priority and working on my other professional endeavors.

Until that devastating derailment also known as my triple negative breast cancer diagnosis.  In my sudden and immediate change of priorities to better understand my breast cancer subtype, research treatment options, physicians and focus on survival, I withdrew from my upcoming fall recital. 

That was 8 years ago.  Aside from the occasional moment that I plunk at a piece from my childhood or adulthood recitals or some of my half-written songs and a few comical attempts to provide lessons to my family, the piano has sat largely unused.  Sometimes dusty and out of tune, it represents a stark contradiction to the dedicated days of practice, my scheduled piano tunings and appreciation for the instrument and music I was able to produce. 


The years since my breast cancer diagnosis have been filled with highs and lows, a challenge as I find my way in my new normal.  Dreams I once had have been replaced by new dreams.  U turns have been a large part of navigation in my new normal.  Reconstruction has been an overriding theme.  As 2016 closes with another year of survival, another holiday and my 47th birthday, resolutions I used to make have been replaced by one simple declaration for the year ahead.  I’m bringing back the music to my life! 


Things that were out of tune and dusty in my life will be dusted off, tuned with a refocus to have beautiful melodies today and the next day and the next day.  This is a work in progress.  I look forward to recommitting myself to some of the things I “lost” and making my new normal more bright and beautiful. 


I pray that there’s also beautiful music for you in 2017.  I’ll keep you posted and hope to hear about your 2017 adventures. 

Happy New Year!

Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach, Reconstructionist™ and Health and Wellness Advocate.  Always striving to color outside of the lines when defining your new normal.



Celebrating Breast Cancer Survivors

On this first day of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and every day, I celebrate survivors.  For me, you become a survivor the moment that you are diagnosed with cancer; the moment that you become aware that cancer is in your body and make the decision to battle, to survive.  Not when you begin or finish treatment, not after surgery, but the moment that you are diagnosed.  That’s my definition.  Surviving is hard, no doubt, but truly a blessing. I draw strength and encouragement from my survivor sisterhood.

Your strength is unmatched. Your grace is remarkable. Your courage is unquestionable. Your faith is unshakable.

The soul of a survivor is that of the phoenix rising from the ashes. The incomparable and unconquerable spirit that is imbued with fortitude.

Beautiful and radiant.   You have spread your winds and soared to heights that most never reach. You are standing on a peak that belongs to you and you alone.  Dance, sing and praise yourself! You are a breast cancer survivor!

Melanie A. Nix – Triple negative breast cancer survivor.  Resilience Coach, Reconstructionist™ and Health and Wellness Advocate.  Always striving to color outside of the lines when defining your new normal.