Posted: June 14, 2021 in: Person of the Week


Jane Marczewski, who goes by Nightbirde when she sings, has a two percent chance of surviving the cancer that is present in her spine, liver and lungs.  Yet, she stunned America’s Got Talent (AGT) last week when she sang an original song of hers called, “IT’S OK.” She received a standing ovation from the crowd and the judges.

Her voice was beautiful.  The words were beautiful.  But what resonated most with me, as I know  it has with many of millions of people, was when she reflected on her own mortality.  When AGT creator and judge Simon Cowell marveled at Marczewski’s ability to calmly speak of her ongoing, years-long battle with cancer, she replied:

You can’t wait until life isn’t hard anymore, before you decide to be happy.

Those words fit so well with the Pain-2-Power philosophy that I can’t resist doing my part to bring them to as many more people as possible.  Because they illustrate that we human beings retain the capacity—much too infrequently used—to adopt a happy warrior’s mentality and, as the Stoics would say, “Amor Fati,” or love one’s fate.  That Marczewski has transcended to that level of power was evident when she also said, “I have a two percent chance of survival.  But two percent chance is not zero percent.  Two percent is something.  And I wish people knew how amazing it is.”

You will encounter problems in life.  I will, too.  Perhaps those problems are at hand today.  But if we can find it in our hearts to remember that problems are also always possibilities, we can turn pain into power, like the alchemists of old, turning lead into gold.  This week, Jane Marczewski leads the the way.

Dr. Keith Ablow

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