Vicky Lynn Darden – WOMAN of ACTION™

A Celebration of Women™

is honored to Celebrate the Life of this powerhouse of a woman.

A survivor in many areas of life, here is a perfect example of one that makes a decision to Take Action and use the experiences that life can toss to us, at us and through us; using these events collectively as the molding kiln to grow into the Woman we were destined to BE.

 

WOMAN of ACTION™

Vicky Lynn Darden

 
Hello everyone, my name is Vicky, I am a cancer survivor on a mission, I will undoubtedly represent women and cancer survivors everywhere on what I believe is an adventure never before tried by a cancer survivor. My goal is to share the gifts I have been given, my story, my intellectual capital, and most importantly my love with everyone I meet along this journey of what I call ‘purposeful homelessness’.



I am a mother, grandmother, sister, daughter. Like many of you reading this, I wear many hats; Reiki practitioner, coach, speaker, voice talent, writer, artist, cyclist, just to name a few. I have had varied occupations in life, from EMT to corporate management. I’ve been an event planner for many great causes, most focused on children and many to bring awareness to cancer, spoken on Capitol Hill and traveled far and wide to represent cancer survivors. As a cancer survivor who has lost multiple family members to this disease, this cause is near and dear to my heart.

My journey to becoming the woman I am today began many years ago. Each event in my life, whether good or bad, served to mold me and was always a life lesson. Having survived molestation at the hands of 2 relatives, rape and domestic violence by a husband, and cancer, with each phase of my life I have found ways to gain valuable lessons.

I grew up in a house with love and a strong value system. We were taught to love, be kind, be honest, and live by the golden rule. We were also taught what I consider my most valuable lesson learned, that no matter how bad life may seem we can and should live in love. Those values stayed with me and became a big part of my life. My way of paying forward the lessons that my experiences taught me has been to find ways to give back to women who may be in similar situations. I also give back to the community of cancer survivors around the world. That is my current journey.


I started my journey of service by first speaking to a large group of women about ‘domestic violence’, how it affected my life, and how to break the cycle. This would serve as part of my own healing process. My life blossomed from there and I soon found that the best way to heal from any negative forces that came into my life was to give back to someone else.

For quite a few years now I have done educational presentations, keynote speaking, organized and held events for pediatric cancer patients, volunteered in many ways and in many parts of the world, all as a means to give back and to heal. I just finished a collaboration for a university educational project for women.

We all have our own “bucket list” of things we really want to do before we die.

Many years ago, one important thing on my list was to ride my bicycle across the USA. I wanted to connect with nature, the scenery, and people, in a way that traveling by automobile just doesn’t allow.

 

Life has a funny way of making sure we get just what we wish for.


March of 2011 I lost my corporate management position and for the first time in my life found myself unemployed. I was sitting in my apartment meditating on where my life was going and when I opened my eyes, I was staring right at my bicycle. Suddenly it hit me, what better time to take that bike ride. I thought, I want to touch as many lives as possible so why stop at crossing America, why not conquer the world. I sold most all of my worldly possessions to pay my way. I did some research and decided that this would be my catalyst for change and I would be a “Change Agent” for survivors everywhere.



I left Pennsylvania in November of 2011 and haven’t looked back. I am volunteering whenever and wherever the opportunity arises. I stop at cancer centers and hospitals to simply say thank you to the nurses and doctors who have chosen to be in the tough field of oncology. I talk to survivors all along the way and offer a hug and a smile to brighten their day. An additional goal is to raise $1 for each mile I ride for my featured charities and to leave the smallest carbon footprint as I continue on this adventure.

I have seen many smiling faces on my journey, none compare to the smiles on the faces of the pediatric cancer survivors I have had the privilege of bringing joy to. At one of my most memorable events, everyone in attendance was asked to sign Tibetan Prayer Flags with their own personal message, dedication, or prayer. Those flags were then sent to a friend, to be hiked to the top of Mt. Everest and displayed for eternity. Those flags and the smiles of those littlest cancer survivors have led me here, to the true meaning of a smile and my desire to be of service to others in an even greater way. I wanted to expand my smile power to the rest of the world, to my extended human family.

My dream now is to represent cancer survivors and the 28 million people currently living with cancer on this epic adventure visiting cancer survivors in many parts of the world. However, this journey isn’t just about cancer, it is about so much more, it is about joy and love.

I believe real life problems are gifts for spiritual awakening, not a reason to stop trying. I truly believe that we are all part of a greater energy and that if each of us chose to make a difference in someone’s life every day, the result would be a collective of caring people. The world would be forever changed.


Spreading smile power to the far reaches of the globe; I will travel living in the moment, knowing that all things are possible. Follow me, join me if I am in your town, support me, pray for me, and pass along my joy to those you love. You may have someone in your heart that has suffered in some way or just someone you care about, dedicate my ride to them. I will carry their names and your prayers with me around the world.

I want to see a future where women take the gifts they were blessed with and give them freely without fear and at a level equal to men. I believe; ‘as women, we need to empower other women’, we need to lead by example and show that we can all live an amazing life.More of my journey can be found at http://www.unlimited-smileage.com.



Vicky Darden, Cervical Cancer Survivor and Activist



 

I have taken all the painful things that have come into my life and turned them into something positive. My goal is to inspire women and survivor’s to live their most amazing lives. I ask myself two simple questions each day, “What can I do for others?” and “What can I do for myself?”, if we ask them in that order, the first question always answers the second one. I sold most of my worldly possessions to pay my way on this bicycle trip. Timing was right.”


Consider this..

* 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women will face cancer at some time in their life
* In 2011, in the US, more than 1500 people died each day from cancer,the equivalent of 9/11 every 2 days
* Cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in children
* On average, in the US, 3 women a day are murdered by their husbands orboyfriends
* In the US, more than 500 sexual assaults happen per day
* A report of child abuse is made every 10 seconds, 5 children will die from that abuse each day in the US



Love that was lost … A grandfather to throat cancer, a sister to liver cancer, an aunt and an uncle to lung cancer, and an aunt to ovarian cancer…me and another sister kicking cancer’s butt…a friend murdered at the hands of an irrate ex…

A few caring people will change the world. Will you be one of them?





10 Reasons to Smile


  • Smiling makes us attractive. We all want to know the person who is smiling so we can figure out what is so good.

  • Smiling can trick your body into changing your mood. Try it when you are having a bad day.

  • Smiling is contagious. Smiling people bring joy and happiness wherever they go.

  • Smiling relieves stress. We are more relaxed.

  • Smiling can boost your imune system.

  • Smiling lowers your blood pressure. There is a measureable reduction in blood pressure when you smile.

  • Smiling is a natural drug. Studies have shown that smiling releases endorphins, natural pain killers and serotonin, a feel good combination.

  • Smiling is a pain free face lift. The muscles used for smiling lift your face and just like magic, you look younger.

  • Smiling makes you appear more confident. Looking confident leads to a long list of great things in life.

  • Smiling helps you stay positive. Smiling on the outside sends a message to the inside that “Life is Great.”

 

The HISTORY of the TIBETAN PRAYER FLAG

 

 

A Celebration of Women™

takes of our hats off to this inspiration for all the Women of our World,
and welcomes her into our Alumni of WOMEN of ACTION™.

Brava Vicky!

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