Use Whatcha Got Week 35: Take It Back

I had to flip through eight calendar pages to count out the weeks. We are well past the halfway point with Use Whatcha Got. As hope flickers and slowly grows in my heart, so does the list in my mind of things I’d like for Christmas (just kidding. kinda. well, just sort of. :)). A few weeks back I had the privilege of speaking and sharing my cancer story at Morgan Stanley for a Professional Women’s Breakfast.


This was my first speaking gig where I needed to look professional, since it was advertised as a Professional Women’s Breakfast and all. I started to panic about what to wear. Panic is too strong a word. Yes, I exaggerate. I had some mild concern as to what I should wear since I speak mostly in front of college students. Translation: I wear my Rainbows (a brand of flip-flops) or even go barefoot. Or I speak at young mom events. Translation: during young mom days, the typical go-to outfit is a t-shirt with optional spit up on shoulders, ponytail and yoga pants which means jeans and a shirt sans spit up and snot, my Tom’s wedges and we are good to go.

I decided to stick with using my black skirt turned dress (oh, yes, the list continues of why this was the best purchase of 2013), but went out and bought some nice black leather pumps at Nordstrom Rack. Nothing says professional like black leather pumps. Classic. Timeless. Unlike my jeans, which have varied in size over the years, my foot remains the same as my junior high days. Anything I buy in the shoe category I can wear FOREVER.

But then I stopped.

And then I remembered.

Use Whatcha Got.

I dug around my closet.

I found all sorts of black shoes in various forms: boots, flats, heels, wedges. I have a pair I really, really like and there is nothing wrong with them.


So I decided to return the black pumps.


And it turns out, no one really noticed my shoes because we were in a board room. A very, very nice board room with an incredible view on the 10th floor!


As I shared my story, my perspective was reset. Cancer has a way of doing that. I was reminded all over again.

Each day God gives us is a gift. 

Life is about people, not things. 

The biggest blessings in my life–family, friends, community, faith, Life, can’t be bought. No one on their death-bed ever wished for more shoes.

I have been given much more than I could ever use.

Needs and wants are not the same things. 

Rather than deprivation, I am experiencing renewed freedom.

God has been good to me. So very, very kind.

I’m surprised at how quickly my perspective can be swayed. But as I enjoy what I have instead of pining after what other’s have, I find I’m genuinely happy for others and the blessings in their lives.

Anyone out there still trying to Use Whatcha Got?? Catch me up.