So, because I’m not really a reckless person, or a complete fool (jury is still out on that but just go with it), I’ve decided to try tamoxifen again, but at a lower dose. Clearly the 20mg dose was too high for my sensitive little body to handle, as it caused severe visual disturbances (my vision went black, for those of you who missed that post). The more that I read, the more that I believe in the use of hormone therapy for me, considering my age and my naturally high estrogen production because of where I am biologically on that front (my cancer had strong receptors for estrogen). I do believe that my integrative approach to healing is best for me. I had my breasts amputated. My entire lifestyle is different -no more booze, no more weed, no more dairy, no more meat, mostly raw, running daily, a gajillion cups of matcha green tea daily, high dose vitamin c, acupuncture, too many supplements to mention, iscador therapy, and most importantly, facing my demons and inviting them for tea and crumpets, even if they sling poo at me for giggles (my demons are 4 year old monkeys).
This book has been pretty transformational for me so far. Bernie Siegel (the author) is a surgeon who has worked with many cancer patients, and he discusses what he’s observed consistently in “exceptional cancer patients” throughout his 40 years of practice. He defines exceptional cancer patients as patients who defy the odds, and he highlights the thread of commonality among them all: outlook, attitude, a somewhat defiant personality, and overall life perspective rooted in solid self-esteem, and feelings of control in their treatment. I’m encountering, yet again, the importance of the mind in the healing process. Honestly, that’s my biggest weapon, as well as my biggest challenge in all of this. I find myself resisting things like meditation, mindfulness, anything that resembles stillness-even yoga. At this time, running feels better to me, so that’s what I’m doing, but I’m allowing myself to be curious about what that resistance is all about for me. Perhaps it’s fear. Fear of what might come up if I sit still. I find it challenging to take a really deep diaphragmatic breath lately. It seems I exist in a state of tension for most of my waking day-my breathing is always pretty shallow. And when I consciously choose to breathe low and deep, it feels foreign to me-I almost feel a lump in my throat, like I might cry.
My fragility makes sense given the circumstances. And even if the circumstances were different, fragility would make sense because of the fact that I am human. We are all fragile. Life is tough stuff for all of us.
I want my life, no matter how long it is, to be a reflection of what’s important to me. So far, what’s important to me is love, expression, empathy, compassion, understanding, music, and truth.
Today I feel a bit scared, but excited for what the future has to offer, because I’m hopeful that this next chapter of my life will be better than the last.