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Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Freedom in facing the fear

Fear is something that grips your life when you get the diagnosis of a chronic disease.  We all like to think that we could handle it; that we could take it on the chin - stiff upper lip and all that.  In truth noone knows how they will react until it happens to them.  One thing is for sure; life will never be the same again.

There are stages of dealing with the news.  Some of the reaction is the public face that we allow others to see, but the rest is the fear that grips your heart, mind and body in the wee small hours.  Even when you think that you have it all under control you can lose your grip and fall backwards.  This is partly because there is, or there was for me, no hope offered.  No concept that you could actually still get better even if a cure is highly unlikely.  It is possible to live with incurable cancer, even to make peace with it and allow it to co-exist with you no matter how reluctantly.  The problem is finding that hope.

Hope for me came in the form of Jane Plant's "Your Life in Your Hands", a book that I came across when browsing in my local library.  I devoured it and just felt such relief that there really were some things that I could do which would support my body and the treatment that I was having.  Someone recently joked that due to the rising cost of electricity, gas & oil, and current market conditions, the Light at the End of the Tunnel has been turned off.  Well if the light had been turned off this book gave me the switch to turn it back on again.  Things as simple as giving up dairy and red meat and getting rid of my plastic food containers was a start.  I looked at other things around me.  I changed to eco friendly washing up liquid, natural toothpaste, used shower gel and shampoo which has no parabens.  All of these things are within my control and I CAN make a difference.  I don't have to sit and just take the tablets and treatments and stare at the wall and wait to die, I can actually Live with this - with a capital L.

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