change quote20th December 2014

It’s the 20th of December and with the crazy spin our lives have taken we have not even thought about Christmas.  No matter – we have 4 days, it’s all good!  Marc and I madly start to do Christmas preparation and shopping.  Anyone who knows me knows that I love to make quick decisions so this works for me.  We got o a large shopping centre and go nuts!  As much as a slow moving one boobed woman can.  In my mind I am moving much faster and smoother.

I am still so bloody sore it is driving me nuts.  I still have the seroma (swelling at the surgical site) and the worst of it is right where the bra elastic sits, so no matter what it is really uncomfortable.  Only a few days ago I was struggling with the desire to “fit in” and to wear my prosthesis.  No more baby, stuff the weird looks I’m in too much pain!   I get pretty comfy with going bra less.   AND more importantly ignoring the weird looks from insensitive or inquisitive people.

Marc and I see the Naturopath Theresa today.  She works at the same clinic that my lovely GP works.  For anyone wanting to know about this clinic it is called Sydney Integrative Medicine. Check out the resources page on this blog site to go to their website.

The blessing about this for me is not only will my GP and naturopath communicate and work together, they have access to each others notes.  It’s awesome.

Therese is great, she is switched on, caring and a cancer survivor herself.  She changes my supplements and says my diet needs to change substantially.

I need to avoid dairy, wheat, caffeine and sugar as they all feed cancer either directly or through increases in insulin.  Insulin is a growth factor so that means any circulating insulin will cause any single cancer cells in my system to grow.  Sugar, is what they use in MRI scans to show where cancer is as it feeds on the sugar and lights up like a Christmas tree.  No thank you Ma’am, that’s not what I want!

I need to eat green, fresh, variety and get my body more alkaline.  Having an alkaline body means that cancer cannot grow – bring it on!  She gives me supplements to take to help cope with chemo and its awful toxicity.  I feel like I understand and have a real plan.  She also says I need to lose 10kgs.  Any extra weight is a place where your body manufactures estrogen.  So I need to be lean.

Therese suggests acupuncture to help me cope with the side effects of treatment, stress, pain etc. I’ve had this therapy before and it works wonders for me, so I book into to see an acupuncture therapist they can do wonders during chemo.

She asked how I am doing emotionally, I explain that I feel quite numb at the moment and am wondering when I will “feel something”.  She explained that she is a cancer survivor too and that after a diagnosis there is at least a 6 week window where you function and it does not feel like anything, then after 6 weeks it can hit and you then need to come to terms with it.

Because of this process she recommended that I have some counselling.  She recommended a psychologist great with grief and such diagnosis experiences who is also a cancer survivor.  I agree to book in with him.  I leave feeling empowered and resourced.  More importantly I feel heard!  I feel that there are aspects of this crazy journey that I can actually have some management over.  Now that is an amazingly comforting feeling.

I have felt completely out of control since this started, actually for years before my diagnosis when I was feeling like crap and stressed out.  Slowly my world began to spin out of control, I tried everything I knew how to do to help, but nothing worked.  Hopefully with the help of counselling and hindsight I can learn from this experience and see where things went pear shaped.

That afternoon one of my oldest friends comes to visit.  We were roomies at University and lived together for more than 3 years.  He is now a Dad and lives south of Sydney with his beautiful family.  We have always remained in touch but he has been really supportive since I told him what’s going on.  More supportive and caring than many of my closest girlfriends.  This really surprised me!

One thing this journey really helps you determine your friends and who does the hard yards with you.  I don’t hold any grudges or hurt toward those who fell silent, its not an easy journey to do and many people just don’t know what to say.

One thing this has really shown me is to show up, let someone know you care and that you are there for them.  If you don’t know what to say, say that, but show up