You Have Cancer, Again – I heard those words

by francy Dickinson              

Dear Francy; I had breast cancer five years ago and now they have found a tumor in my liver. I’m more afraid this time than the first time, when they told me I almost passed out. I do not want chemo again and I do not want to take my time for living and have to worry about cancer and death. I want to ignore it, what now?

I understand because I was diagnosed with cancer in my late twenties and it was taken care of at that time and has not returned. But I went through three rounds of chemo. I also walked next to my sister with her cancer fight that ended way too soon and too young. Cancer hits every level of life and every age…but truth about cancer recovery stays quiet. So, lets open the windows and talk:

Things to think about if you have been told you have cancer:

  1. No matter what age you are, cancer in your body is yours. Take charge of the procedures used and know what the cancer is and where it is in your body. Do not take anyone’s word for anything, ask questions, look up ideas and thoughts that come to your mind.
  2. Follow your own drummer. If you have cravings for orange juice, then drink it…your body will talk to you and tell you what it needs, so listen!
  3. Everyone has a choice in care, you can do research and find a doctor and place that will give you the tri-pod treatment of good medical care, good supplemental and food nutrition, good emotional and spiritual support. This is how you get well, you have to attack all of the cancer in all of your body and mind. Attack it with your full body. It’s like going to work, you have to learn and read and just make up your mind that you will get well.
  4. First prepare for the worst. I always talk to those that are faced with a serious health concern to get the worst out of the way. Be a big kid, face the business side of your health. Make out a Health Care Directive, even if you’re young. Give the power to make decisions for you to someone you trust. Let them know what you want in your health care and how you would see the ending of your life. So they can then fight for you and make sure you get what you want in care when you are not feeling strong enough to do so for yourself. >> Do a will and make sure your few or many things have homes after you leave this life. Do not make your parents, spouse or best friends do this hard task for you. Take charge and get things in order. Then when you recover, you have it done and can forget it, but if you have years ahead of fighting your health, you do not have to be doing hard emotional things when you are extremely ill.
  5. Your things have a life and energy of you. So, to tuck a note into a envelop with a ring, or ear rings, or special poem or picture of you as a child. Have it ready to give to a loved one or friend on your passing -it will be a life long remembrance for those that are lucky enough to have loved you and carry your memory. This is hard, but it is a loving and grown up ritual that is very caring. I cherish the note my sister tucked in for me with Grandma’s diamond pin..I often open the note and just touch her writing, it brings me peace. Plus, for you it brings forth the closeness and importance of relationships and family.
  6. Pick your team and tell them. Look through your family and friends and pick about three people that will stand by you through your fight to be well. Talk to each of them and tell them, you want to know if you can count on them. You will need to talk, research, cry and recover with them. They will coach you to positive motivations, positive words and total dedication to wellness. I would not include your parents or your spouse. This is your bestest friends, maybe an aunt, or a sibling. Let them know how important it is for them to be there and make sure they are able to be strong for you. This is a fight and just like war, you need strong soldiers to be on the front line.
  7. When you close your eyes you need to visualize where your cancer is and what it looks like within your body. Ask a nurse or doctor to help you with this mind picture. Then when you do your mental healing each night, you can take the white light of love and send it right to the place that is infected and bath it with light to heal the area. You need to know where the cancer is so you can do this task twice daily. When you wake and when you are ready for sleep, you get quiet and bring in the white light and bath the area of infection and know it is clean and out of your body. This is the spiritual part of your healing, you do this as you get your chemo and other treatments and you take in your good food and supplements that boost your immune system. If you do not understand how, then read about meditation and prayer and learn how, this is your body and your recovery – you are in charge. Empower yourself with knowledge.
  8. Each night spend at least a half hour reading about supplements that others have taken to help them fight cancer and boost immune system. You will find chat rooms with others that have cancer and the same type that you have and they will give you ideas. This information will help you feel you are in charge, not a victim.
  9. Know that your mind is your strongest support – your mind, pushing the cancer out of your body mentally, building up your system’s immune abilities – your own brain can do that, but you have to do some reading and learn how. See this is like taking a college course for your life…learning everything you can each day.
  10. Write down goals. If you only have a daily goal of making it through that day, your life is not strong. Your life is strong when you have a goal for six months and a year away…seeing yourself on a trip, or in a local hot spot dancing the night away. You set your own goals and then write them down and post them up on the mirror in your bathroom. When I was taught this technique it turned around my healing. I went from day to day to a trip to Europe and a boyfriend with a Rolls Royce. I brought that to me…just by thinking and knowing I could live and I deserved life and good things ahead of me.
  11. If someone asks you how you are…say medium. It is hard to be fine, good or horrid…so verbally just say medium. It will usually fit. Bad days you stay home, good days you go out. But your good days may not look good to others. So do not let them bring you down, just smile and say “medium” and leave it at that, no more said. Do not talk about your health challenge to anyone but close family and your team of friends that support you. Do not give the cancer or infection in your body energy by talking about it to others.
  12. Go out– looking perfect is for the Paris Hiltons of the world. You are looking alive and that is a very good thing. If you need a scarf, hat, wig, or painted eye brows do it. No one cares. I used to be so afraid, then one day my girl friend told me that no one at the mall would be looking at me. She made me walk in the mall doors and yell bananas and see who would look at me and notice. So, in I walked through those doors and I yelled bananas at the top of my lungs and she was right, I was ignored. I changed my ways, I went where I wanted to go and did what I wanted to do and dismissed my beauty for enjoyment.
  13. Write – get a journal this minute and write down your thoughts, ideas, and trivia. Write down questions for the doctors and ideas of how to make care giving even better for others. Write sad or awful thoughts, just write. Keep it private, write down those wild ideas and get mad on paper. It will free you of frustration and build your mind strong.
  14. Find music that sends you away on a cloud, lets you float through a proceedure or chemo treatment that is uncomfortable. Music that is easy and has a heart beat background, let yourself dive into the music and become the music. Use headphones and MP3 player so you get a wonderful surround stereo to fill your mind with peace and comfort during times of stress and pain.
  15. Talk about the possibility of death with a stranger. Yes, a stranger. I found that when I talked to a stranger I could be real and me. I did not have to be careful not to upset anyone I knew. I found a Chaplain and went to talk to him when ever I need to. I would talk about my feelings on death and dying. On losing my dignity and what dignity was for me. I got it all out and it made me feel so much lighter. I talked about my faith – not the faith that I found at home or church or on TV…my own personal feelings of faith. It changed me totally…. I was able to be honest with me. My own thoughts and fears were able to come out. Then I went back home and smiled, but inside I felt strong.

Your family does not know what to do to help you. You have to be a traffic cop to keep ahead of the well wisher. So ask others to help you. They will ask you all the time, how can I help, do you need anything? Say YES, I need a new pair of slippers, I need some fresh flowers every two weeks, I need some really expensive chocolate, I need…you have to say it and ask for help. They want to help, they just do not know how.

I know this is trivia to many people, but when you have cancer, you long for truth and it is hard to find. So it is my gift to you – keep doing, keep thinking not just living but strong body life. Keep giving to others to keep your mind calm and most of all…listen to the you inside, you have answers…they are just small whispers that you need to be quiet to hear.

If the day comes that you hear your body say…it’s over surrender…then listen and hear what you need to hear from your own loving center. You are the general in this war, it is your choice to fight or to stand back. But be wise, wars often seem the worst just before they are won. Take wise steps when you are talking of retreat, yet remember that retreat can often give you a time of strength, feeling of wellness and time to say good bye to those that you adore.

You are loved by strange lady in Tacoma, Washington. Does that help? No I suppose not, but the point is, there are folks out there that you have touched in your life, they are spread out all over and they will be sending you their love and energy. Together with your own self love and energy, you will heal. Believe it, it happens everyday- it happened to me.  Blessings, francy