Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Work your Mojo


Mojo: a magic spell, a hex, or charm, broadly: magical power

Mojo. The word conjures up psychedelic flashbacks of Austin Powers chasing Dr. Evil, trying to get his back. Strangely enough, that’s an appropriate parallel. We all have mojo. Too often, it gets threatened, even stolen by people and circumstances. We all must spend our lives chasing it back.

I just finished reading Geralyn Lucas’ memoir, Why I Wore Lipstick to my Mastectomy, her story of how she found and kept her mojo in the face of cancer. I started reading it for research, not even intending to finish it. [It’s not like I haven’t heard cancer stories before]. But I found myself so inspired and drawn in I couldn’t put it down.

Geralyn was diagnosed with breast cancer at 27, requiring a mastectomy. While most would see this as a death sentence, she not only survived, she thrived. She tells how kindred spirits came out of the woodwork. How she learned to let go of certain security blankets she had grown deeply attached to and find her inner strength. How she dealt with the effects of having a mastectomy. How her search for the perfect bra was completely different from other women her age. How despite nearly transferring her office to the bathroom to accommodate puking at any moment, she got a promotion. How she beat the odds and got pregnant. How not being assured of a next moment gave her the power to truly focus and live fully in the moments she had by taking risks, and laughing.

“I have cast a spell over my own life. I have willed myself to find my magic that must still be there. Despite the baldness and one boob, and occasional heaving, I am charming. I have met my mojo.”

Today she is motivating and inspiring survivors and people who have never given cancer a second thought with her story. I imagine her at the bar drinking her coke adorned with one of those Boobzie coozies.

“If my life is short, I need to taste it now. Mojo.”

c. 2012

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