About Elena Sonnino
Once upon a time there was a girl who believed in making wishes. I even called myself a chaser of dreams.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m still a dreamer.
But now? I believe in the power of setting an intention. Grounding myself in the here and now. Focusing on gratitude for the big and little moments.
The change happened when I realized that achieving a goal or end result only tells (a small) part of the story.
You see, I am a cancer survivor. And while that label – of being a survivor – defines a part of my life, it does not paint the entire picture. None of the many labels that we attach to ourselves do.
It has been 18 years since my bone marrow transplant for Hodgkin’s Disease. I now realize and admit that I had ZERO tolerance for myself as a “sick” person. My solution has always been to keep my chin up at all costs. Yes, the ability to be positive helped me stay motivated through my treatment. But also? I swept a oceans of emotions and sensations under the rug as I went.
I even wore my cancer as a badge of honor that I was grateful for. Grateful? For cancer? Yup. I told myself that cancer had given me the daughter that I eventually had by connecting the dots from my diagnosis to getting pregnant. (That is a story for another time)
Eventually, I used my cancer to motivate me to run a marathon. (Ok, five marathons. But who is counting?) Because I was all about finding symbols of strength. And clearly, running 26.2 miles was the ultimate symbol of health and confidence – right?
I now realize that I missed one crucial step. While I was so focused on being strong in the long run, I forgot to appreciate the strength and growth in each small moment.
Since then, a lot has happened. I’ve changed. I’ve struggled, succeeded and struggled again. I call that life. And yes, life happens.
I learned to notice and accept the NOW.
I set out to learn to surf but learned to fall instead. I sat in the back of a new yoga class thinking I’d never learn to fly in crow pose, and now am a RYT-200 hour yoga teacher.
And I fall. A lot. Off surfboards. On my yoga mat. On the side of a volcano.
But most importantly? I celebrate the growth throughout the journey instead of waiting for the finish line.
I find stillness to hear my intuition. And then, I believe in it. I set intentions and accept where I am along the way. I am a survivor. Just like you are. I’m a warrior in the making. Just like you.
“The only person who can open the door to inner truths and lead to the light is yourself.”
My Finding Flight Manifesto:
✽ I believe that the more you are willing to fall, the stronger you will be when you rise up and try again.
✽ I believe that gratitude, laughter and movement are keys to unlocking the mysteries of life.
✽ I believe in the power of butterflies, moving water and mountain energy.
✽ I believe in adventure travel as a way to discover unearthed parts of our true selves.
✽ I believe that we all need an epic belly flop every now and then.
✽ I believe that we are all survivors. But more importantly, we are all warriors.
It isn’t the act of falling that defines us. It is what we do next that matters.