Real Stories

AshleyCae Lee’s Journey Through Cancer, Faith, and Art

AshleyCae Lee’s journey through battling cancer has been a profound testament to resilience, faith, and the power of self-expression. In this interview, she shares the challenges she faced both physically and emotionally, reflecting on how her faith evolved and how it inspired her creative work, particularly her album “Black God.” Through her words and experiences, AshleyCae Lee offers valuable insights and advice for those navigating their own adversities, highlighting the healing and transformative nature of self-discovery and artistic expression.

What were some of the biggest challenges or struggles you faced while battling cancer, both physically and emotionally?

My journey with Cancer has been a difficult one. It has been one that has had its trials and tribulations, but for me, I’ve always found a way to find light you in the darkest spaces.

This album was a way for me to release a lot of things that I’ve been holding onto a lot of struggles with my faith a lot of struggles with myself, and to be able just to sit down and release myself into the universe was one of the most free feeling. I was able to collaborate with my brother Courtney Bell And he really help me open up on our track Ethereal. The album is produced by my good friend, Day Solo , and having those two people with me to create this masterpiece helped so much. 

How did your faith and worldview evolve throughout your battle with cancer, and how does it reflect in your creative work?

One of the biggest struggles that I’ve battled with physically is honestly having to accept that I am not able to do as much as I used to do and being able to accept the limitations physically. Mentally it is hard to accept what the doctors have told me as far as my diagnosis it’s terminal, it’s hard to accept with me only being 28 is hard to be told you’re gonna die.  

I definitely would stay with my bottle of cancer. I have grown closer in my faith. I am a believer that I see the power within myself. I seek the God within myself, and I was able to really just become one with my spirit and it’s really helping me, long way mentally in this journey.

So for me, creatively creating this project, I did a lot of just figuring out what I want to convey with this project. I wanted to tell the journey of God I want to tell the journey of being black I wanted to tell the journey of getting through trials and tribulations, and they’re still being light and they’re still being hope and for me, it was just so important, that people heard my story.

People heard me and not the mask of me that I tend to carry because I don’t want to hurt people with what I’m dealing with, but see the most authentic version of myself.   

What was the creative process like for you while working on “Black God”? Did you find it therapeutic or challenging?

So this is the moment that stuck out to me and my cancer journey and affect me creatively I remember calling my brother, Courtney Bell I was in chemo and I called him crying and I called him telling him how afraid I was to die and we sat on the phone and you know he told me man is flawed the universe has the final say, and he, you know he just kept pouring all this light into me. So they just encouraged me more just the right from the most authentic space in myself. 

What message or lessons do you hope listeners take away from your album?

Every time I tell a poem and I’m speaking, especially if I’m like doing it in a way or other people are gonna hear it. I put every ounce on my soul into it and I tell myself is this is the last time I speak these words I want someone somewhere to fill it, and I want them to carry it with them and I want them to be able to be, a better person than they were when they heard my words and that is a model I go by every time I perform every time I speak I do my poetry I want people to take a piece of meat with them.  

What advice would you give to others who may be facing similar challenges or dealing with their own battles, whether it’s cancer or any other adversity?

I would honestly tell people who are going through anything I would tell them to write right like you’re so depends on it because often times you may not have a way to speak to the people around you, but being able to write out your thoughts in a place that’s not gonna judge you they won’t condemn you that won’t cause you any additional pain you don’t have to worry about hurting them just pick up a pen and write right like you’re soul depends on it  

In what ways do you use your platform and creative work to inspire and support others who are going through difficult times?

 Well, my platform, especially with my poetry I use my words as a way to inspire. I use my words in a way to spark conversation, especially when it comes to things like Cancer and Cancer, being a very uncomfortable conversation for a lot of people I open up that leeway for people to just speak and to be heard.  

Looking back on your journey so far, what are some of the most valuable lessons you’ve learned about resilience, self-discovery, and the power of expression through art?

The most important thing I’ve learned in this journey is to love myself to appreciate both the light in the darkness, and to know at the end of the day, whether I stay or go, I’m healed   


by Harness Editor

Harness believes that freedom of expression equals female empowerment. The truth? We’re a badass authentic community of fierce women, and we exist to help your voice be heard. Harness is here to be your safe haven. A place to shed the competition, the insecurities. This is a place to rise by lifting others. This is who we are.


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