Thank you for all the words of encouragement!
Thank you, thank you, thank you! Darren, my boys and I are so overwhelmed by all the messages of support, love, encouragement and HOPE! As a family, we share all the messages, and every single one is felt in my heart. The past year, as Darren shared with all of you, has been really tough since I started making changes to my medications last July. These changes were full of hope that we can prevent/stop a re-occurrence, deal with the massive pain from all my surgeries, and essentially give me my life back. We were so full of HOPE. Only to keep being more and more disappointed with each doctor’s appointment, each test, and each day as my body became more riddled with pain. Let me share with you what has transpired the last few years. This might be a little long and some of you may be wondering why I am sharing this. I am journaling my journey as part of my healing. Releasing my thoughts, pain and emotions are needed for myself, but to also help so many women who have gone through similar journeys dealing with Breast Cancer. So many people believe that once you go through standard medical treatment, and if you survive, that life should just return to normal. Anyone who has gone through extensive cancer treatments knows that your life will never be the same.
My life drastically changed two years ago when I had two surgeries within 5 days; one an 11 hour surgery and the 2nd a 5 hour surgery. To be told the implants they used to reconstruct you are now linked to a new type of Lymphoma cancer and we need to get the implants out now! The damage and destruction from this surgery left me with additional pain and the inability to use my right leg. The surgery was to reduce my inflammation markers, increase my immune system, and unfortunately this did not happen. Fighting my way back to some type of normalcy after this was extremely difficult. As much as I wanted to pretend everything was ok, each day became more and more difficult. This was the physical pain but adding on the emotional pain that started shortly after, broke me.
The emotional pain of being my dad’s primary care giver as he was dying in the hospital for four months, making the decision to put him into a deep sleep for him to pass, knowing that at that moment it would be the last time my dad would look at me with his beautiful eyes, being the only child there at this moment was harder than I thought. Then unexpectedly losing Darren’s dad, 10 days after mine, broke me emotionally. To listen to my youngest, Dryden, say “Mommy, I am so sad I have no more grandparents”, broke my heart. Losing the first man in my life, my dad that loved me like no other, shattered my heart. I never left my dad’s side from the moment they put him to sleep. I listened to his every breath, slept next to him, and did not want my dad to die alone. The night my dad died, being in that room, just me and him as he took his last breath, was beautiful yet the hardest thing. Leaving that room destroyed me. It was so important to my mom and dad, that when dad passed away, each kid was given a diamond from my dad’s beautiful wedding band to put into the center of a cross and for all of us to wear on a necklace. My dad was so worried I wouldn’t get mine that he had it in written in his Will, he wrote it on several pieces of paper, my mom even wrote a letter and taped it into her jewelry box. I pray and hope every day that my siblings will do the right thing, and give me the one small diamond so I can make my cross and wear it close to my heart. I hold a charm in the shape of a heart, that was my mom’s, to give my strength and I know she is with me. I know my dad is with me as well but it just would be nice to have a physical item that I can hold, that my dad so desperately wanted me to have.
Why do I share this with you? I share it as I recognize the emotional pain in the last year has played a role in my physical pain. Stress kills. Thoughts are the language of the brain, and the emotions we attach to those thoughts are the language of the body. Those emotions can make us sick. I have been so crippled by the emotions I have felt from my family when my dad passed, in addition to the emotion of fear of my cancer, in addition to the feeling of why me, why do I need to deal with cancer, in addition to the sadness of all the pain, all these emotions built in my body. I know I no longer have to view my future through the lens of my past. This is so easy to type and say, but incredibly hard to do. The moment I start feeling those emotions of my past brings me right back to my past, and I can no longer see or feel my future. As I work incredibly hard to heal my physical body, I know I need to remove the emotions I have attached to all the hurt in order for me to fully heal.
If you have read this far, thank you for joining me on my journey. As much as I am writing this blog to journal my journey, I am writing it as part of my healing journey. As I go into the next couple of months I have to find the will to fight. Feeling like you have been fighting since 2011, when I was first diagnosed, you start to feel why do I have to fight to live? I honestly don’t know why, but what I do know is this is my life and I have the choices to make it what I want. I have been dealt these cards, and how I play the game of life is up to me.
Many of you know that I have combined western medicine, natural medicine, Auryvedic medicine, and have traveled to many countries to learn the best way to fight my cancer. My choices may not be the right choices for everyone. What I do know is when I was told almost 10 years ago that I may have only one year to live, is that I needed to open my mind to any and all treatments available. For those of you that sent me messages, telling me that I shouldn’t take anymore pharmaceuticals, any more medical treatments, that this is what is making me sick, I know you sent me this with love and support. Please know, this decision was not made lightly.
The world is so full of judgement right now that I actually really considered whether or not I want to share what I am doing. I was fearful of the judgement. I mean look at our world right now, we have people getting irate and making fun of people because they decided to wear a face mask. I saw someone even post a graphic of someone shopping at a grocery store and their buggy was full of food that may not be the healthiest, but they said the same people wearing masks have grocery carts like this. My heart just sank. When did our world become this mean? When did people stop believing in people and that everyone is doing their best? When did we stop giving people the benefit of the doubt?
So, here is my ask: Please don’t judge my choices. Because I am someone who believes that all treatments, medical and natural, are needed for the best results, it leaves me to judgement of not being one or the other. So, for those of you that passionately believe that all natural remedies are misleading and not backed by science, you need to know that I wouldn’t be alive without my natural remedies and treatments I have been doing since diagnosed. For those of you that believe that medical treatments and pharmaceuticals are full of toxins and only kill healthy cells in our body, you need to know that I wouldn’t be alive without my surgeries that removed all the cancer, and the chemotherapy and other pharmaceuticals. If you have not faced your mortality, if you have not sat in a doctor’s office with your husband and heard the doctor say, “I am sorry, we have done all we could. Enjoy what is left of your life”, please don’t draw judgements on the choices someone makes fighting for their life. Just love them!
I hope you join me on my journey as I fight once again to live. My hope is that when all this is said and done, and I have used all my natural remedies to support my body physically and emotionally, and my surgeries are behind me once again, and the medication has done what it is supposed to do, that I will to be able to give HOPE and education to other warriors facing cancer!
No matter how many times you hear that there is nothing left to do, remember that there is always HOPE!