I am Worth It!

The day I heard “You have cancer,” my life completely changed. I knew I would not only beat the dreaded C-word, I would also do anything, to make sure it never came back.

When I was admitted to the hospital, I had to have four pints of blood immediately. The emergency room doctor told me, she was amazed I had not stroked out because I lost so much blood. She even had a nurse sit with me in the exam room while arrangements were made to admit me. I was in that bad of shape!

The next couple days was a whirlwind of tests before they found the cancer in my rectum. The news was bad, it had spread to my liver. Time was not on my side and I didn’t have time to look for options, as far as less invasive treatments. I decided to trust my doctors and go with conventional medicine until I was at least out-of-the-woods. I knew I would eventually look for holistic options to rebuild my immune system.

A month after my diagnosis, I was on the Internet looking for survivors of stage four rectal cancer. There weren’t any, so I looked for other stage four cancer survivors and it didn’t matter what kind they had. I found a few, even one who is living with cancer for over ten years now. I read how they changed their diets and lifestyle and decided I would do what they did. At the time, I was still in conventional treatment but was determined to beat the C-word, no matter how long it took.

Five months later, to the amazement of my doctors, I was cancer free and still am. My medical team was awesome and I am grateful they worked hard to save my life. I told them to give me the most aggressive treatments they had and they sure did. My job was to keep my mind straight and eat healthy. I think if I had just ate whatever I wanted, like my doctors suggested, I wouldn’t have made it. The radiation treatments would have destroyed my immune system.

My doctors knew what I was doing; eating vegan, organic foods, juicing and drinking green smoothies; drinking a shot of Noni juice daily, meditating and keeping a positive attitude — oh, and eating marijuana cookies for nausea. The majority of western medicine doctors don’t get much training about the importance of nutrition. If you saw what they eat, you would be shocked! They eat the same processed junk foods we do.

I no longer eat that crap and yes — it’s crap! The food being sold today isn’t food, it’s created in labs. Yes, packaged foods are convenient and preparing meals from scratch takes a bit more time, but you know what takes a lot of your time too? Going through cancer treatments! Once your diagnosed expect to devote 40 hours a week going to endless doctor appointments, getting blood work, hospital stays, tests and more tests, surgery/chemo/radiation treatments. Expect to feel like shit. I did, but I got well faster than most and it is because I was an active participant in my medical care. I was determined to do what ever it took to get well and it worked.

In a couple weeks I will celebrate four years living cancer free. I will eat some organic dark chocolate to celebrate. I still eat a vegan diet and I eat 80% raw organic foods. If there aren’t organic choices, the only conventional foods I will eat are those with a peel; cucumbers, bananas, oranges and mangoes. Berries, apples, spinach, kale, carrots, red peppers, cilantro, broccoli and lettuce are always organic. Yes, they cost more and I am worth every penny.

My number one job is to stay healthy and I can honestly say, I am healthier than I ever was, even before the cancer diagnosis. For years I was plagued with digestive issues. Several times a year I had boils in my groin area that had to be lanced. All those problems went away.

Lately, I have listened to cancer patients complain that making fresh juice is just to time consuming. They would rather drink Odwalla or other fake health drinks. It’s too much work to make fresh foods.

Make a salad? Who has the time? It’s easier to open a can or microwave dinner in a box. I listen and don’t say much. After all its their life. Its their choice. But my mind is thinking, What the fuck is wrong with you! It’s food for Christ sake! You have cancer! You are fighting for your life! Don’t you want to do whatever it takes to at least try to beat this?

I explain to the person I am talking to, that it takes me less than seven minutes to juice seven to ten carrots and that includes taking them out of the bag, rinsing them, juicing and clean up. I don’t cut or peel them. I don’t need to. My Breville juicer 106650_fpxhas a wide mouth and I just stick in the carrots and go. It couldn’t be any easier. making salads are just as easy. I can make a green smoothie in less than five minutes and I use a regular Black and Decker blender_jpg, not a Vitamix. Both my juicer and blender cost me less than $150.00 total. I am on my second blender. The original one died this year after working daily, sometimes twice a day for almost five years.

I am a thrifty person, and always have been. I look for sales. Thrift shops and estate sales are my best friends. Since I don’t buy expensive clothes from a mall, own a Smartphone, etc. I have money to buy healthy food, and even then I look for sales and stock up.

Every day I get up and say thank you for being alive. I say thank you to my body for putting up with my past abuses. In my defense, I didn’t know the food I was eating was making me sick, but now I know. I have no excuse. It’s up to me to make better choices. Just because it sits on a grocery store shelf, doesn’t mean it’s good for you.

I show my gratitude, by treating my body with the love it deserves, and feeding it healthy food.

Yes, preparing healthy meals takes time and I am grateful to have the time (as in being alive) to do it.

Be well and eat healthy!
ingebird

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11 thoughts on “I am Worth It!

    • Thank you for the kinds words! And I agree, there are doctors who turn a blind eye as to how we are getting sick. The cancer industry is big business and growing. When I visited patients in the infusion center, I heard story after story that their cancer would be managed — not even trying to cure it. These patients go along with it, not knowing there might be other ways, or to get another opinion. Then again, I know of a couple patients who went for second opinion and the new doctor didn’t want to go against first doctor’s prognosis.

      For example; a patient complained to his oncologist that his ribs hurt. Not a little, a lot. He had over 25 radiation treatments in that area. His oncologist shrugged it off, so patient went to 2nd doctor who said nothing was wrong with him. No one suggested an x-ray. Patient told me his story and I suggested he stop by ER to get checked. They took x-ray. He had 2 fractured ribs, probably from radiation. Did either doctor apologize? Absolutely not. But at least the patient got answers.

      The same thing happened to me, except my doctors took me seriously. I had 5 insuffiency fractures in my pelvic bone from radiation. My doctors didn’t argue with my decision to add integrated treatments but that didn’t mean every doctor I met was open to it. I just didn’t listen to them.

  1. I am still a work-in-progress, but getting better everyday. Six months ago, I gave up diet soda, an addiction I enjoyed for more years than I can count. Moving more toward organic, more grains and vegetables, less meat. Thank you for continuing to motivate me as I transition to this healthier life style.

    • Thank you! I am following your blog. It looks like a wealth of healthy information and I want to keep learning something new. I wish the dietician (the hospital didn’t have nutritionists, but I was assured they meant the same thing) who visited me during my treatment could have met you. Her idea of healthy food comes in a can! Ugh!

      • Ahh that makes me cringe!!! I feel like Dieticians aren’t so receptive of alternative food ideas like juicing, which is partially why I am NOT pursuing an RD designation! I believe there are better ways to approach healthy eating than by following a “Food Guide,” and saying healthy food comes from a can – yikes!

        Legally dieticians can call themselves nutritionists but not vice versa because the term “nutritionist” is unregulated in both the USA and Canada, so really anyone can call themselves a nutritionist. The nutritionist designation I’m pursuing is recognized all across Canada BUT is not governed by a regulating body. It is a very educational program, and I am hoping to learn more about more alternative ways to go about helping things like cancer!

        I’m so glad you’re finding my blog worthwhile! 🙂

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