Holly Butcher posted her advice to the world 24 hours before she died of cancer.
Holly Butcher posted her advice to the world 24 hours before she died of cancer.
This was her message…
A bit of life advice from Hol:
“It’s strange to realise and accept your mortality at 26 years old. It’s just one of those things you ignore. The days tick by, and you expect they will keep coming; Until the unexpected happens. I always imagined myself growing old, wrinkled and grey- most likely caused by the beautiful family (lots of kiddies) I planned on building with the love of my life. I want that so bad it hurts.
That’s the thing about life; It is fragile, precious and unpredictable, and each day is a gift, not a given right.
I’m 27 now. I don’t want to go. I love my life. I am happy… I owe that to my loved ones. But the control is out of my hands.
I haven’t started this’ note before I die’ so that death is feared – I like that we are mostly ignorant of its inevitability… Except when I want to talk about it, and it is treated like a ‘taboo’ topic that will never happen to any of us… That’s been a bit tough. I want people to stop worrying so much about the small, meaningless stresses in life and remember that we all have the same fate after it all, so do what you can to make your time feel worthy and great, minus the crap.
I have dropped lots of my thoughts below as I have had a lot of time to ponder life these last few months. Of course, these random things pop into my head the most in the middle of the night!
1) When you are whinging about ridiculous things (something I have noticed so much these past few months), think about someone facing a problem. Be grateful for your minor issue and get over it. It’s okay to acknowledge that something is annoying but try not to carry on and negatively affect other people’s days.
2) Once you do that, get out there and take a freaking big breath of that fresh air deep in your lungs; look at how blue the sky is and how green the trees are; It is so beautiful. Think how lucky you are to be able to do just that – breathe.
3) You might have gotten caught in bad traffic today or had a bad sleep because your beautiful babies kept you awake, or your hairdresser cut your hair too short. Your new fake nails might have got a chip, your boobs are too small, or you have cellulite on your arse, and your belly is wobbling.
Let all that rubbish go… I swear you will not be thinking of those things when it is your turn to go. It is all SO insignificant when you look at life as a whole. I’m watching my body waste away right before my eyes with nothing I can do about it, and all I wish for now is that I could have just one more Birthday or Christmas with my family or just one more day with my partner and dog. Just one more.
4) I hear people complaining about how terrible work is or how hard it is to exercise – Be grateful you are physically able to. Work and exercise may seem like such trivial things … until your body doesn’t allow you to do either of them.
I tried to live a healthy life which was my major passion. Appreciate your good health and functioning body- even if it isn’t your ideal size. Look after it and embrace how amazing it is. Move it and nourish it with fresh food. Don’t obsess over it.
5) Remember there are more aspects to good health than the physical body.. work just as hard on finding your mental, emotional and spiritual happiness too. That way, you might realise just how insignificant having this stupidly portrayed perfect social media body is… While on this topic, delete any account that pops up on the news feeds that gives you any sense of feeling rubbish about yourself. Friend or not… Be ruthless for your well-being.
6) Be grateful for each day you don’t have pain, and even when you are unwell with man flu, a sore back or a sprained ankle, accept it but be thankful it isn’t life-threatening and will go away.
7) Whinge less, people! .. And help each other more.
😎 Give, give, give. It is true that you gain more happiness doing things for others than doing them for yourself. I wish I had done this more. Since I have been sick, I have met the most incredibly giving and kind people and been the receiver of the most thoughtful and loving words and support from my family, friends and strangers, More than I could ever give in return. I will never forget this and will be forever grateful to all of these people.
9) It is weird to have money to spend at the end.. when you’re dying. It’s a different time than you go out and buy material things that you usually would, like a new dress. It makes you think how silly it is that we believe it is worth spending so much money on new clothes and ‘things’ in our lives.
Buy your friend something kind instead of another dress, beauty product or jewellery for that next wedding. No one cares if you wear the same thing twice. It feels good. Take them out for a meal, or better yet, cook them a meal. Shout their coffee. Give/ buy them a plant, a massage or a candle and tell them you love them when you give it to them.
10) Value other people’s time. Don’t keep them waiting because you are rubbish at being on time. Get ready earlier if you are one of those people and appreciate that your friends want to share their time with you, not sit alone, waiting on a mate. You will gain respect too! Amen, sister.
11) This year, our family agreed to do no presents, and despite the tree looking rather sad and empty (I nearly cracked Christmas Eve!), it was so nice because people didn’t have the pressure of shopping, and the effort went into writing a lovely card for each other. Plus, imagine my family trying to buy me a present knowing they would probably end up with it themselves.. strange! It might seem lame, but those cards mean more to me than any impulse purchase could. Mind you, it was also easier to do in our house because we had no little kiddies. The moral of the story is that presents are optional for a meaningful Christmas…Moving on.
12) Use your money on experiences… Or at least don’t miss out on experiences because you spent all your money on material crap.
13) Put in the effort to make that day trip to the beach you keep putting off. Dip your feet in the water and dig your toes in the sand. Wet your face with salt water.
14) Get amongst nature.
15) Try enjoying and being in moments rather than capturing them through your phone’s screen. Life isn’t meant to be lived through a screen, nor is it about getting the perfect photo.. enjoy the bloody moment, people! Please stop trying to capture it for everyone else.
Random rhetorical question. Are those hours you spend doing your hair and make-up each day or going out for one night worth it? I’ve always needed to understand this about females. 🤔.
16) Get up early sometimes and listen to the birds while you watch the beautiful colours the sun makes as it rises.
17) Listen to music.. really listen. Music is therapy. Old is best.
18) Cuddle your dog. Far out, I will miss that.
19) Talk to your friends. Put down your phone. Are they doing okay?
20) Travel if it’s your desire, don’t if it’s not.
21) Work to live, don’t live to work. Seriously, do what makes your heart feel happy.
22) Eat the cake—zero guilt.
23) Say no to things you don’t want to do.
24) Don’t feel pressured to do what other people might think is a fulfilling life… you might want a mediocre life, and that is so okay.
25) Tell your loved ones you love them whenever you get the chance and love them with everything you have.
26) Also, remember if something is making you miserable, you can change it – in work or love or whatever it may be. Have the guts to change. You don’t know how much time you’ve got on this Earth, so don’t waste it being miserable. I know that is always said, but it couldn’t be more true.
Anyway, that’s just this one young gal’s life advice. Take it or leave it; I don’t mind!
Oh, and one last thing, do a good deed for humanity (and myself) and start regularly donating blood. It will make you feel good with the added bonus of saving lives. It is so overlooked, considering every donation can save three lives! That is a massive impact each person can have, and the process is so simple.
Blood donation (more bags than I could keep up with counting) helped keep me alive for an extra year – a year I will be forever grateful to spend here on Earth with my family, friends and dog. A year I had some of the most fantastic times of my life.
..’ Til we meet again.
Would you like to contribute and inspire other members of staff?
If the answer is YES, here is what to do:
Fill in the form below, and one of our team will be in touch.
If you visited our Kindness Matters website but do not have a Twitter account, do reach out, and one of our team will be in touch.
Thank you for your kindness
Your Kindness Coach