A cancer diagnosis that brought great change.
On the 29th of December 2015 , doctors held the next 6 months of my dear life in their hand. The results where announced to me a few days or so later, but it took over a week to really sink in and accept that that tiny bump which, at first glance seemed insignificant even to the specialist, was really Breast Cancer.
Yes , I was angry- I live a healthy life and try to create as much awareness about breast cancer even through my line of work…yet , life has its own sense of humor. I blamed it on my genes (f*cked up DNA -check) , and a decade of contraceptive pill to ‘fix’ my heavy periods (at 17 you still rely on what ‘grown ups’ tell you). And although I really believe that those factors highly contributed to my current situation, I came to a point of accepting it as another challenge.
The challenge doesn’t always mean ‘fighting’ breast cancer as if it was some entity – a him/she ” if only it was that easy- I would have kicked the bloody bastard out of my life with all I hold dear to me… Those who really know me know I’m all for a good fight …for a good cause of coarse.”
Cancer is more of a psychological fight. A fight that can bring along stigma about your life style choices. The fact that I choose a considerably healthy life gave me some sort of peace of mind that there are things which are out of my control. Ok, stop…if I could go back in time a month or so ago I would have FREAKED out at what I’ve just written- ME having no control over this was out of the equation- big NO NO… But oh boy how things change so quickly.
What started as a Facebook post, turned out to be more of a ‘diary entry’ – i was always so judgmental about such post and now I’m the one doing it – *ewww* *face palm*…. Anyway, I just wanted to explain why I’m missing out on events or not taking certain bookings to all my dear clients and friends. Thank God , life gifted me with such incredible people that my little ever growing business can still take off without me being constantly present.
Everything will go on as usual; orders will be made and delivered , kids parties will be held and my little soap shop will still offer the support to those who want to experience a healthier and more beautiful lifestyle. I even loved my latest tv interview which was held 3 days after my chemotherapy session- shaved hair , red lips and high heels. This how I’m going to fight this.
I’m still a strong believer of living at your optimum level – the correct food and right cosmetics to support properly the function of the body ; meditation to support a healthy mind and most importantly fueling on positive energy by those around you to help you carry all the heavy emotional baggage that cancer brings along with it. It can be very easy to shut out everyone to prove to the world that you are able to do it by yourself. It’s ok not to be strong all the time, it’s ok to cry, it’s ok to be sad – it’s normal to feel alone…. Yet you never really are- just really dig down and you’ll see.
I hope to have the energy to continue sharing my experience through my treatment. I hope this experience and whatever I learn can be of some use to others as well.
Any form of prayers are also welcome .
Be well and take care. Charly X
I got to thank everyone for the massive response after my last fb post. The support and encouragement I got was unexplainably touching. It’s amazing feeling to experience first hand so much kindness in this world.
On a hospital bed, I’m left with so much time to sit and think that unless I jot down my thoughts my head will explode. No wonder my neck got so much locked that the Profs thought of scanning my head for any ‘eventualities’. Thank God, they found no signs of ‘bad’ cells in my brain. Then a friend of mine reminded me to have a bath! The IRONY – the soap queen had to be reminded to have a bath! #facepalm #SlapHer
So of course , I reached for my special blend of Epsom salts, Himalayan salts, sodium bicarbonate and herbal infusion; Nice warm bath, candle light and soak. This time round no glass of wine I’m currently staying away from any alcohol and sugars since they can contribute to further inflammation. I’m also scrubbing a bit more often then usual. Even just after one session of chemo, I can still see my skin changing. I’m experiencing more blemishes which most do not experience. My body has a tendency to detox that way so I’m not worried too much about that.
The bath was truly a blessing. My neck is not completely unlocked but it’s waaay much better. Even my skin doesn’t look half bad. Still no signs of hair falling but probably it is to be expected next week , or the next… Maybe .
20 minutes in the bath and left wondering about how constantly we are bombarded by negativity from the media- the political wars, the religious fights, the financial battles … I think we really forgot there is still so much good in us. In less then 48 hours I got various calls, people visiting and sending messages , beautiful quotes and funny pictures to cheer me up. My mobile has to be constantly plugged in and the battery is not lasting more then a few hours!
I got people reaching out telling me their stories ; their victories and also their sadness; how they are fighting their 3rd cancer; the teenager who had to go through very serious brain infections but survived against all odds ; the mother who was not just fighting her own battle with breast cancer but also having to be strong for her 5 year old who had already passed through 2 surgeries. Our pain is so so relative . I consider myself to have nothing compared to these people and yet they are reaching out to me to give me courage.
We stress ourselves about the most stupid and materialistic things. We hate ourselves because we don’t have the perfect body, we are frustrated because we don’t have the perfect job, stress because we don’t have enough money….or squabble about who should have won the Eurovision song…. #MulejHudni
All this becomes insignificant and realize that our LIFE is the most beautiful and precious ‘thing’ that has been borrowed to us and that it can be taken away at any given time.
29th Jan 2016. Since the ‘news’ , my world has turned completely upside down, shaken and stirred in all directions… But ironically, not completely in a bad way! Life can close many doors in your face but can open up a window. That’s exactly how I feel right now.
The first 2 (long) weeks after my cancer had been diagnosed, I’ve taken all sorts of tests (and more to come, yahooo!). They where both physically and mentally challenging; I felt weak, tired, depressed , angry, sad and completely OUT OF CONTROL- and that’s my worst nightmare.
But life has once again blessed me with many guardian angels. In less then a week, my path crossed that of a ‘food scientist’ , an ‘energy worker’ , a business consultant and an old friend who pampered me with a blissful massage an eased some of my muscular pain. I also have to thank Susie for sending over a pot of her #QueenofGreens , which has been a great boost of energy, and hopefully have some more to stock up at my shop
My food has altered big time- even though my diet consisted mainly of veg and fruit and considered ‘healthy’ in most medical terms, it was made more clear to me, through an enlightening meeting with knowledgable Albert , that I was lacking vital minerals… And there was more to it then just what I consumed…
After my 12 year episode with the pill (which i truly believe it was the main culprit) my body changed significantly when I decided to stop it (this happened 3 years ago). I was steadily gaining weight, had very bad mood swings and experienced a bad out break of acne for almost a year but which I successfully managed to control with my natural products. But there where still ‘things’ happening on the inside.
Most ‘professionals’ will NOT tell you that weight gain, skin problems and high levels of stress are basically the result of a ‘chemical’ imbalance in our body… Once we disrupt our delicate balance , our bodies just goes on tilt. By taking the pill I was simply messing up with my hormones and although some might not agree that this might have lead to my breast cancer , there is still no doubt that it had a huge effect on my body…and not just my body.
Throughout these 7 years in the business , I’ve come across so many young and older women who faced and experienced many similar problems due to the pill, that I can’t just see this happening again. If this post could make 1 girl stop from continuing to poison herself, my ‘bad’ experience would have not happened in vain.
On a more positive note, my mineral rich diet which is now consisting mainly of raw veg, fruits, seeds and nuts – has giving me so much energy, that ironically , even though I’m going through chemo, I’m feeling healthier then ever before. I will try to post some of my new easy recipes very soon for you guys to try out . Will also post something about meditation when I get better at it :p
I still have a long way to go, but my new approach to life and to health has given me a lot of strength and positive energy to face the ‘enemy’. After all , this battle has to be fought not just with your body but also with your mind and spirit.
5th Feb 2016. This morning I went for my second session of chemo. I decided to go ahead with these sessions and finally I made peace with the decision I took. It wasn’t easy for me to accept to take the conventional route . But since I also decided to complement it with homeopathic treatments, in a way I feel more in control of my situation. My nausea can get pretty bad at times and no drugs actually work for me. Last time I spent 3days on a drip as I couldn’t retain any liquids. So I’m hoping a homeopathic remedy will do the job this time. Will post more about the results in the following weeks.
In the last week many more beautiful things happened. I came across more kind and beautiful people who showed loads of support. Another guardian angel named Claire gave me vouchers to one of my favorite food place #TheGrassyHopper . So last Wednesday , after my blood tests , I decided that I deserved a little afternoon treat. Wayne (my other half) came up with a brilliant idea to give my hair the last shave and do it at ‘top of the world’ in Madliena- so that my hair (or rather what was left) could ‘fly off ‘ rather then end up in a bin. So after a nice wholesome meal at the grassy hopper , we hopped on our little sky blue #soapmobil with a portable shaver to our sacred place . It was a clear sunny winters’ day – my favorite type of weather.
Wayne also had long hair a few years back and although he has now relatively short hair , he never had the guts to shave it off or give out his hair. But after the news, he was really considering shaving his too to support me (oh..bless him) , but I think my head is nicer then his , so better not :p … But jokes apart, I came to realize even more how precious and lucky I am to have him around. He has been my rock throughout this experience . Tomorrow it’s his birthday and unfortunately I couldn’t plan anything for him- no pressies for this year… These are the things which frustrate me the most. :/
So , have you got into the whole carnival spirit yet ? This is my new look for #Carnival2016 – the bad ass G.I Jane look 😉
I still have my locks in a bag together with that of Wayne’s. We will be donating our hair to the Community Chest fund to make a wig out of it as I’m sure it will make another little girl happy . I know how it feels to face hair loss problems at a young age..it’s what made me go into alternative and complimentary therapies actually! So I guess God have helped me grow back my hair so I can help someone else … Who knows…
I always felt life presented me with such experiences for a reason. The journey has been full of ups and downs …. Thankfully more ups then downs. This time round , my journey encountered a little lump ..errmm I meant bump … The destination is still unknown but I leave that in the hands of the superior being.
13th Feb 2016. It’s been 8 days after my second chemo session. It’s becoming more clear to me that this ain’t gonna be an easy ride- The chemo/steroids cocktail feels more like they are attacking my brain rather then anything else. My thoughts fogged, my ears blocked, my voice slightly coarser and my movements slower .
The irony of this whole experience is that I seem more like a ‘normal’ person now , then the rushed, super charged, maniac women I used to be just over 8 weeks ago; My body is definitely trying to teach me a lesson.
Yes, I basically lost all my hair now as you can see. It even complements my signature duck face . I don’t mind it as much really. Since I started chemo, I get hot flushes in my head most of the time, so wigs and scarfs aren’t always bearable. I just do most of my shopping and errands without. The attention it gets it’s undeniable. Some people stare, laugh or remain baffled … When I’m with Wayne , we giggle at people’s reactions and we actually joke about it. My shiny bold head has become the stress ball of the family. I could even start charging money every time people ask me to touch it. *Bad news* my legs are still hairy grrrr… I was promised silky smooth, hairless body all over and i only lost my hair… Not fair! :p
In the following weeks I’m expected to loose my eyelashes too. That is kind of freaking me out. Thankfully my eye brows have been perfectly tattooed by the talented Sarah Elise before starting my chemo sessions. I believe it makes a big difference to a face. I know that all is sounds rather vain, but someone who is passing through this experience doesn’t just stare death in the face but s/he has to also deal with his/her own reflection every single day- which is sometimes scarier. Seeing yourself changing in such a short period of time can also contribute to a lot of emotional stress and although these are temporary physical changes , it can make a whole difference to your state of mind which in tern also determines your general health.
My new diet, meditation lessons and homeopathic treatments also contributed to a better state of mind – Many Docs just bluntly told me these are all ‘cucati’ and that it is all in my head… Well, although I’m eternally thankful for all the cure and attention I’m getting, it doesn’t change the fact that our brain is an amazing machine which in all due respect, orthodox medicine still knows very little about. If all this is a placebo effect, I’m happy to accept all the ‘cucati’ I come across . I feel more energetic then most patients I meet in hospital, I have less nausea and best of all I don’t feel like my life has slipped away from me. I feel blessed to have come across so many caring people with loads of knowledge on health and holistic wellbeing.
Of course there are ‘bad days’ – days where I wake up head down in a toilet bowl and days where I cry for ‘no reason’ – but those ‘days’ are actually just a handful of hours in a day – my remaining 19hours are usually great and that includes 8 restful hours of sleep. I’m grateful for that as I know many ‘healthy’ people who don’t even manage a good night sleep, so I consider myself lucky.
My valentines this year is going to be a special one- spent with the most important people in my life; my family. Happy Valentine’s Day everyone xxx