US Review of Books

The US Review of Books

My Wonderful Nightmare

by Erin Higgins & Alma Lightbody

Trafford Publishing

reviewed by Carol Davala

“Life is very short, too short to let a single moment pass that is not meaningful.”

Over twenty years ago, the beloved Saturday Night Live cast member, Gilda Radner, penned It’s Always Something, a best-selling memoir that revealed the popular comedienne’s courageous battle with ovarian cancer. Here, in the same vein, under the auspices of co-author Alma Lightbody, a certified Holistic Health and Wellness practitioner, Erin Higgins shares a very personal collection of journal entries in My Wonderful Nightmare, an inspiring work that speaks to Higgins’ own heroic fight against the same devastating disease.

Soon after her initial diagnosis, Higgins wrote the following “I believe that my purpose in this life is to have this cancer, beat this cancer and teach those around me about life, struggle, strength, and insight.” Speaking directly to the reader, the author’s journaling becomes a medium for venting, celebrating, and grieving all the new day-to-day occurrences she faced. And while Higgins felt this expressive forum paramount and therapeutic to the healing process, clearly she felt an even greater desire to share her journey with readers. This work is filled with powerful insights, often highlighted in bold print to stress their significance, such as the importance of laughter, taking control when dealing with doctors and treatments, and using survival instincts. In an attempt to find relief from her “dis-ease,” the author chose both conventional and alternative therapies throughout her ordeal. In candid detail Higgins describes surgeries, chemotherapy treatments, nutritional and metabolic programs, and Lightbody’s “Healing Touch” practice that helped to balance the body’s energy centers.

Though Radner and Higgins both ultimately succumbed to their illness, in a gracious gesture they each left behind a beautiful gift. While their stories are truly individual, they are not meant solely for friends or family members. Filled with honesty and emotion, these works are intended for anyone dealing with, or touched by a serious illness. In particular, Higgins’ writing offers up a brave revelation of life’s unpredictability. Surely her open heart and eternal spirit will help bring clarity to our own final journeys.

RECOMMENDED by the USR

Gold Seal Award

I have just been notified that I am now a Trafford Publishing “Gold Seal” author!

What Would Erin Say? Blog #9

MY SPIRITUALITY HEIGHTENS EVERY DAY

“Life is very Spiritual now – forever changed by this horrible cancer – but I appreciate it so much. I really enjoy time alone now, more than ever.” ” I feel I am on a different plane from everyone else.”

“I do enjoy this level of consciousness and spirituality I have reached. Everything is so important now.” ” I have done a tremendous amount of ‘soul’ work since this began and I have come to know myself very well. I know what I need and what I don’t need.”

“What a revelation!! How freeing that is! Life is a spiritual journey and it’s not about ‘who did what to whom’ – it’s about spiritual growth and lessons we (the Universe) have chosen to teach our souls.”

We have to give Erin a lot of credit for how she handled dealing with an illness that is so all consuming. She took the high road and learned everything she possibly could about the cancer and more importantly about her connection to her soul. She did not feel sorry for herself but instead paid attention to the power of love she held for herself and others. She passed on to us what she learned, so we too could honour the spirit deep within us.

What we can cherish from Erin’s words is to make a connection with our soul now – rather than wait for something traumatic to be the catalyst needed to make us ‘awaken’.

What Would Erin Say? Blog #8

TAKE ONE DAY AT A TIME AND ENJOY EVERY MOMENT
“I appreciate every moment and am very conscious of not doing anything or saying anything that would make me want to take that moment back. The only thing that consistently gets me out of depression and makes me appreciate what I have is to live for today only and give up trying to change the things I don’t have control over! Works every time! Life is very short, too short to let a single moment pass that is not meaningful.”

Taking one moment and one day at a time is difficult for most of us. We tend to focus on the past or worry about the future – or at least reach for it – when in fact the real power and enjoyment we have is in the present moment. In the blink of an eye we can miss what is so important. The age old worry chart, that demonstrates how futile worry is, makes us realize we can do very little about the past and future – so focus on today and use each moment wisely. How do you feel about these ideas??

What Would Erin Say Blog #7

Learn to Speak Your Truth

” I do not always speak my truth and it’s gotten me into trouble. We all must speak our truth – always. One day at a time. I have to speak my truth because if I don’t it all gets stuck in my gut and helps this disease grow. That, I believe, is how it got there in the first place – years of lying to myself and others about how I really feel and what I really need.”

Speaking our truth has an evasive meaning for most of us. We think about it in the sense of honesty toward others and tend to ignore the deep truth of our reality within. Our truth is the essence of who we are – our sense of being. It is our genuine honest gut feeling about what our identity is as a person, a soul. Our meaning and purpose in life is our truth. Do you know yours?

What Would Erin Say? Blog #6

Find Your Purpose in Life

Our purpose in life is a soul message of why we are here on earth.  Without such a deep seated message we tend to flounder from pillar to post trying to find our way in life.  Purpose isn’t about ‘what’ we are, based on money, education and materials values.  It is about ‘how’ we are in the world.  How we act, feel, and treat others from the depth of our heart.

Erin found her purpose in life and learned more about her inner voice as she wove her way through her unexpected journey with cancer.  Instead of feeling sorry for herself she turned her adventure into sharing her lessons to help others.  Only one month after her diagnosis she said,”I believe my purpose in this life is to have this cancer, beat this cancer and teach those around me about life, struggle, strength, and insight. That is why I promise to record my thoughts and physical feelings throughout this challenge.  I believe my experiences will serve a purpose to someone I know or will know.”

Erin’s sister Lara said, “For Erin, cancer was a vehicle for her to teach others.  She changed everyone around her.”  In the face of adversity Erin found and shares her life purpose with everyone who is willing to listen.

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