lessons: recent publications

5 Life Lessons from a Brain Tumor That Could Have Killed Me

“Life is a balance between what we can control and what we cannot. I am learning to live between effort and surrender.” ~Danielle Orner

I was slumped against a wall at Oxford Circus Station early one Sunday evening when an irritated male voice suddenly barked, “MOVE!”

Moments beforehand, I had lost my vision.

Without conscious thought, I muttered, “RUDE!” and staggered off without clearly seeing where I was going.

It was only months later, on retracing my steps at Oxford Circus, that I realized I’d been blocking his view of some street art.

I’d allowed a guy to bully me out of the way while in a vulnerable state so that he could take a picture for social media.

Lesson 1: Not all disabilities are visible.

We can never fully know what someone else is experiencing. , chronic pain, and disabilities are not always apparent. So, when we come from a place of not knowing and are patient with others by default, we open up a window of possibility that exists outside of our judgment.

Minutes prior, I’d stepped off an underground train and onto an upward escalator. A pain hit my right temple like a bullet. It took my breath away, everything went black, and I felt I might faint.

Desperately, I clung to the railing. And as the top of the escalator approached, my right foot went floppy, and my vision disappeared. I could see light and color, but the world was blurry, lacking definition.

I used what little vision I had to follow the distinctive white curve of Regent Street down to a spot where I’d arranged to meet a friend

Panic finally set in when I realized that my friend was walking toward me, and I could recognize his voice but I could not see his face at all.

We sat down in a restaurant, and a concerned waitress brought a sugary

liking mindfulness lessons

Danielle Orner


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