Using the power of YOUR mind to heal yourself
My own journey
My own journey
I hadn’t been feeling well for around a year as I had been continually left undiagnosed by my GP whom put everything down to stress! When my right testicle became solid it couldn’t be ignored anymore and I was sent for a scan which suggested an infection, my intuition said otherwise so I went into A & E and by good fortune the Oncology surgeon was in the hospital and they asked if he would come and visit me.
He didn’t say much, but asked me to come up and see him at his clinic at Overdale on Monday afternoon, that was the day my life changed forever.
I” think you have a tumour” he said
I didn’t hear anything else.
“I can’t be sure 100% but what I can be sure of is that it isn’t doing anything so lets get it out as quickly as possible”
Six days later the testicle was removed and the reassuring comments from the surgeon were that he was 99% certain it was over and that I had nothing to worry about, subject to confirmation from the biopsy that would take place in Southampton, there was just the formality of a follow up appointment to confirm all was well, only it wasn’t!
I met with a different doctor who casually announced that I had Lymphoma (Cancer of the blood)
“Is it curable” I asked
“No Idea, it’s not my field” came the curt reply.
I just got up and left, disgusted that someone could deliver such news without even taking the time to give some form of reassurance.
After that it was a waiting game, always waiting for an appointment or the results of a test, three weeks for the first appointment, then 3 weeks for the results to find out if my bone marrow is involved and on and on.
Thankfully my Lymphoma is curable with a prognosis of 80%, in my favour, buts that just the beginning….
12 lots of chemotherapy, half of which were in the spine to protect the brain followed by three weeks of radio therapy left me absolutely exhausted, my memory was useless, commonly known as chemo brain which can last up to a couple of years, my small c for cancer isn’t bad grammar, I simply don’t believe in giving something a capital letter that I hold such contempt for and something that I would defeat no matter what.
But it does get better, all of it, I have studied the mind for over 20 years and that study was the key factor in my recovery, they say positive thinking is important and it is, buts its not enough on its own, its like looking out at your garden full of weeds, closing your eyes and saying “There are no weeds, There are no weeds” only when you open your eyes they are still there.
To fully recover you have to believe at a subconscious level that you will, that means defeating the little voice in your head that keeps telling you it’s not going to happen!
You survive by belief and you get the belief in many ways, by stacking the odds in your favour, by affirming to yourself in the present tense that every day in every way you are getting better and better as the French physicist Emile Coue taught us.
The nurses would send cancer patients to me every day to help them with their thinking, and I have never felt so rewarded than when I saw their faces change as “They got it” I could see it in their eyes.
The only one stumbling block I ever had was when I was coaching five people around my chemo chair and as the nurse administered one of several large syringes, she casually announced that the red one she was administering was the one that could damage my heart, the people around my chair looked at me horrified with what they had just heard.
I smiled at them and said “Not this heart!”
Life has changed a great deal, it forces you to face your own immortality, we all know that we are going to die one day, but it’s a long way away isn’t it?
We think when we finish treatment, that’s it, but it isn’t, it’s just the start of a different journey, weight gain, depression, chronic fatigue etc, are all a part of what’s to come for most of us survivors and we are survivors not victims.
Macmillan have been there for me from the very beginning, even though I didn’t fully realise it and even though I largely rejected the need as I felt that any kind of support was just a reminder of what I had been through and I didn’t care to be reminded! They understood that.
I enjoyed their services of different kinds of alternative therapies in Southampton hospital, if it wasn’t a massage or reflexology, then it was just somewhere quiet to sit and have a coffee of a rest, always a smiling face there to greet me.
When I came back to Jersey they were there offering support, help and guidance, always with a smile and never ever with a feeling that it isn’t convenient, you are always greeted with a smile and you always have as much time as you need, no one ever looks at their watch or says I have to go as someone else is due in.
The Macmillan advert which shows people falling after receiving the news that they have cancer is the most honest advert you will ever see, they do catch you and they won’t let you go. Even when you don’t think you want to be caught.