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Do you love music? Has music played a major (or even not-so-major) part in your cancer experience?

I am really not a music aficionado. I never could carry a tune. I am completely tone deaf.

Comfort in music

Even before chemo, I had no memory for names of songs or who sang them. I mean, I know a really distinctive artist like Willie Nelson or Elvis Presley, but most groups are lumped together in my mind. I definitely would not, then or now, win a music trivia contest.

I wish I was much more learned in things music. I love to sing when no one is around. And, while I might not know the name of a song or who sang it, I often do know lots of words to favorite or catchy tunes. (Sometimes, I don’t even like the song at all, “I Heard it on the Grapevine” comes to mind. I always hated that song. But I sure can sing along with it.)

Nevertheless, a few songs have been particularly meaningful to me since I was diagnosed with lung cancer. I should add a disclaimer here. My faith drives me. It is and has been my greatest source of peace, now and for most of my rather tumultuous life. I primarily listen to Christian radio.

If you are easily offended by talk of God or faith, you might want to quit reading now. I am not trying to force my views on you at all, but the songs most meaningful at this point in my life are often based on my faith.

Relating to what’s on the radio

The one that I have related to most and that I just love to bellow as I am driving (alone) down the road, is Mandisa’s “Overcomer.” You may have seen the video with Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts in it. If not, please treat yourself.

As you may know, Ms. Roberts is a two-time cancer survivor herself. She successfully fought breast cancer, only to be diagnosed a few years later with the bone marrow disease, myelodysplastic syndrome, that she got as a result of her cancer treatment. Americans everywhere followed her fight for good health on Good Morning America.

Overcomer is an appropriate description of Ms. Roberts. It well defines you and me, too! Every single day we get up, face a new day, plaster a smile on our faces (or not), and live! We are overcomers!

Becoming an overcomer

I don’t know about you, but I am proud to be an overcomer. It makes me feel good to know that, at least for today, this moment, I am overcoming one of the most difficult diseases that I could have been hit with. If you are reading this, so are you!!

So, congratulations! Give yourself a pat on the back!! You deserve it.

And, please, keep on overcoming!!!

“You’re an overcomer
Stay in the fight ‘til the final round
You’re not going under
‘Cause God is holding you right now
You might be down for a moment
Feeling like it’s hopeless
That’s when He reminds you
That you’re an overcomer
You’re an overcomer!”1

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

  1. Mandisa. "Overcomer." Overcomer. Sparrow Records, 2013, 1.


  • notme
    2 years ago

    ✊ God Strong

  • Donna Fernandez moderator author
    2 years ago

    @notme, Yes!!!!!!

  • coco1101
    2 years ago

    This is one of the best songs for being able to fight off our demons. Health, family, work, faith – they are all areas where we have doubts. This song has so many ways to head… It is a terrific song – great words and melody. Thanks Donna.

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