“Anyone can give up. It is the easiest thing in the world to do. But to hold it together when everyone else would understand if you fell apart, that’s true strength”. Chris Bradford
You know, so many of my family members died, died from the very thing that has plagued me. When I looked at my family’s entire landscape, it felt like family destiny, and it felt like I would be doomed. But I said NO, even though the odds were small, I said I would fight it, I said I would beat the odds and move this mountain. And I went on my journey.
Because of my athletic background, I had operated under a focused schematic of winning and losing for most of my life, but cancer taught me tolerance for ambiguity. However, with faith and the support of earth angels that came to me in subtle forms, I managed to see my situation as another tennis match.
This opponent—CANCER—with bold uppercase letters, had quite a reputation for me. This opponent beat a few of my relatives and friends through the years, including my dear mother, three weeks before my diagnosis. I was terrified. But just like I did as a young teen, minutes before I would step onto the court to compete, I made my mind up to confront this physical, mental, and emotional bully.
I was overwhelmed, intimidated, stressed, vulnerable, and worried, but I drew a plan to be as ready as possible against this opponent. I began to look for survivors with similar diagnoses, read books of survival stories, improved my nutrition, prayed and meditated, and looked for as many statistics as possible regarding my type of cancer (advanced Melanoma). I thought that the more I knew about this opponent, the better chance I had to win.
Finding other people who came out victorious from advanced cancer would encourage me. Those human beings who beat the odds would be my role models and motivation to play the most important match of my life; they would help me believe that I, too, could come out victorious and move my mountain. Faith with action moves mountains, otherwise, faith is dead!
This match lasted ten years and took ten surgeries. My probabilities of winning were 4 percent, but I came out victorious and survived an advanced melanoma with metastasis of eight tumors in my brain (two of them were not operable).
Why am I sharing this information? Because I want to let you know about the importance of taking ownership of your situation. When diagnosed with cancer, most people opt to run to an oncologist and pretty much become dependent on what he or she says. I admit I was one of those people. I suppose seeing this behavior through the years became my belief. Thank goodness I realized I had to take ownership of my situation and that relying on my oncologist and surgeons alone wasn’t going to be enough. I built a system that allowed me to earn my advanced cancer survivor title. I put faith in action!
As a holistic health and life coach, I work with people dealing with cancer or its threat. I help them obtain optimal health at all levels to live their best lives, and an essential aspect is taking ownership of their health.
“By putting walls around your suffering, you risk letting it devour you from the inside” – Frida Kahlo.
A man is caught in a flood. And as the water rises, he climbs to the roof of his house and waits to be rescued. A guy in a motorboat comes by, and he says, “Hop in, I’ll save you.”
“No thanks,” the man on the rooftop says. “My Lord will save me.”
But the floodwaters keep rising. A few minutes later, a rescue helicopter flies overhead, and the pilot drops a line. “No, thanks,” the man on the rooftop says. “My Lord will save me.” But the floodwaters rise ever higher, and finally, they overflow the roof, and the man drowns. When he gets to heaven, he confronts God. “My Lord, why didn’t you save me?” he implores. “You idiot,” God says. “I sent a boat; I sent you a Helicopter.”
Here is a quote by Lance Armstrong about this short story. I chose to share it because not only do I agree with him, but because it goes hand in hand with the message in this article.
“I believe, in a way, we are all just like the guy on the rooftop. Things occur, there is a convergence of events and circumstances, and we can’t always know their purpose, or even if there is one. But we can take responsibility for ourselves and be brave.” – Lance Armstrong.
Here a tip to start taking ownership of your illness or preserve your health:
“Worry, anxiety, and fear interfere with our hearts, lungs, and other organs’ normal rhythm and weaken the immune system, which we need to maintain strength for the fight. If we feed our subconscious with thoughts of harmony, health, and peace, then all the functions of our bodies will become normal again.” – Dr. Joseph Murphy
To your Health!