A Perspective on Healing; Part 5

fighting CancerMentally, fighting cancer takes a toll. Even for the most rational mind, it’s not uncommon to have morbid or fatalist thoughts flash through the orbital sphere invoking a sense of aloneness, a feeling of being out of control and vulnerable. It’s important to admit honestly to someone close, what struggles the mind undertakes, to speak them out load and then to release them. It’s also important for the listeners to understand their role is to listen, love and encourage. I’ve shared my struggle with my family, close friends and want to talk about it in this forum. Mostly, to document the process of healing but hopefully to encourage others who may be going through treatment (whether Traditional or Western) and those walking alongside.

For those who are just catching up on my cancer journey, you can read from the beginning here… Shift in ThinkingIntroduction to Black SalveUsing the Black SalveNutritional Therapy.

THE MENTAL GAME:

Six months ago I was introduced to a whole new way of thinking about my healthcare. I began to learn more about the science of cancer, the history of Western approaches, as well as, Traditional options including; Black Salve, nutritional therapy, PH of our bodies and what creates a hostile environment for cancer to grow in our bodies. Through it all a deep desire for healing ensued.

20140623-095337.jpgAfter very successful Traditional Black Salve treatments, on three separate spots, I started to feel quite empowered. My confidence was building up enough for me to tackle a 20-year-old spot on my leg. The one that, a few years ago, the dermatologist told me was very suspicious, the one he wanted to biopsy for $1500. The one he said seemed like a rare, deadly form of cancer that likes to grow near scars. The one he later said, was just scar tissue and not to worry. His wishy-washy care left me feeling uneasy about the spot on my leg, but I didn’t know exactly what to do about it. The introduction to the Salve changed everything and a few months ago, I applied the Black Salve to the spot on my leg. I was ready for whatever verdict my body was going to offer. I waited the prescribed 24 hours and there was no reaction. No reaction means, no abnormal cells. I jumped for joy, my family jumped for joy. We celebrated!

Next I successfully treated a spot on my nose and my confidence level sky rocketed. I was finding more consistency with my PH levels and had a growing knowledge of my food/supplement intake. The healing results were hard to contain and anyone who would listen, would hear about the victories my body had overcome.

Skin CancerTreating the next area was high on the radar as I planned to address a spot that had formed near my left eye about a year ago. Originally, it started as a fungus or rash on my lower lid. I sourced a few over the counter anti-fungal creams, which did nothing. I tried a concoction of essential oils including Vitamin E oil, Rose hip, Frankincense, and coconut oil, and the rash went away but a small boil or cyst shaped mole appeared, which sat dormant until I addressed the spot on my nose. During that treatment the boil began to shrink, which alerted me that it might be rooted/linked with the cancer that I was treating on my nose. And, so on May 20, two days before our son’s 13 birthday I applied the Blk Salve with boldness to the spot on my left eye. It reacted violently, immediately.

I though I was prepared mentally, however, the reaction was so dramatic that it caught me off guard. My confidence plummeted. I began to flail emotionally, unsure of how to communicate this drastic sense of loss and the heavy feeling of mourning that swept over me. I felt defeated and all that I could manage to say, was “Why is this happening to me?! I don’t want this in my body. I don’t want cancer.” The pain was immense (mind you, I have a very low physical pain tolerance) I hid in my room for two days, unable to face my family and our two fellow travelers. Mentally, I went darker and darker. Still unable to communicate what I was feeling, my tolerance for basic tasks and conversations was short and I’m sure I pushed my family away. On the third day, all I wanted to do was stay home but thank God, I had to muster up some gumption to focus on my son’s birthday. And, thankfully, we had so many dear friends in Austin, TX (where we were parked for 3 weeks) to help with all of the B-day prep and encouraged me through my sadness and pain.

The party turned out well, and I started to regain my composer. However, over the next few days my mental focus shifted to chastising myself for allowing such weakness, I tried to white knuckle joy back into my everyday life. Then the first Escher (tumor) came out. I was relieved that the ordeal was over and looking forward to going back to “normal.” I was looking forward to not having a band-aid on my face and for my mind to rest and recharge. Unfortunately, the “white root” I had been warned about, reared its ugly head.

You see, at times cancer can have a root system, meaning that it’s not isolated. The roots can travel like tree roots to other parts of the body. When you use Blk Salve and an Escher comes out, you check to see if there is a pink or white spot. Pink means, free and clear, ready to heal and move on. If there is a white spot, it means there is a root and not all of the cancer is out. That means, you might wait a day or two for a few layers of skin to form but you must re-apply the Blk Salve. If you remember in Debby’s story, she had to do this procedure 4 times until it was free and clear. And so, I knew this was a possibility but figured that since the other spots I treated didn’t have the white root, that this one wouldn’t either. The root alerted me that this one was more serious and the mental game re-surged. Ugh!

Black Salve Cancer TreatmentI re-applied. The process began, and this time I was determined to take captive my thoughts. I began to read more scripture, pray more though out my day but the fearful thoughts settled in like unwanted guests. I tried to stay busy, which sort of worked.

With a band-aid on my eye, many conversations with others ensued about my experience with skin cancer and the difficulty I was going through mentally was exasperated by their responses.  My choice to treat it Traditionally, whether spoken or unspoken, was called into question. Some suggested I see a “professional,” and stop trying to take things into my own hands. From a Western mindset, this makes sense. We live in very defined, rule based system that says if you’re not with us, you’re against us. We also live in a society that wants quick fixes and is inept at dealing with others pain. And so, to swim upstream is often rebuked when things get difficult or don’t go according to plan.

In the mean time, the second Escher came out and the white root was still there. By this point, anger started to flood into my soul and fueled a re-application right away. The area reacted even more violently than the first treatment as the Escher went deeper and satellite areas started to emerge. I was at my limit mentally, feeling isolated from my family and friends, as trying to communicate to them was like walking through mud. All I could manage was a silent groaning in my cries to God.

In a last-ditch effort, I reached out to some of my new comrades on a Black Salve Cancer forum. They are from all over the world and have all been through it and more, some of them are experts in the field, some of them laymen like me but all of them champions for one another. They began to offer handfuls of encouragement, advice and wisdom on what to do next. My spirits lifted and as the third Escher fell off I had a renewed focus.

Black Salve Alpha and OmegaThis week, I began my fourth treatment on this bugger of a spot. I hope this is the last battle for this one, but even if it’s not, I know I am not alone. I know there are those who have gone before me. And, most importantly, I know that even when I feel out of control, fatalistic, angry or alone God is faithful no matter what.

This experience has birthed in me a desire to cultivate a culture of healing where ever I go. I will continue to work to take captive my mind and with the resources and knowledge God has provided, I will seek answers through the Word, prayer and by reaching out to other who have gone before me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Perspective On Healing; Part 4

You know the old saying, “You are what you eat.” Well, it appears that it’s a semi-true statement. It’s also true that food has been used for ages to heal patients of ailments and diseases that modern science can not seem to concur.

Hippocrates, found that all foods leave an ash residue after metabolism which is either alkaline or acidic, depending on the mineral composition of the food and the way in which individuals digest them.  If your diet is largely composed of meats, fish, cheeses, breads, white flour, white sugar, greasy take-away, chocolate, coffee, wine, beer and cigarettes (all acid-forming), you may suffer from acidic complaints. Things like Acne, cold hands and feet, Constipation, Diarrhea, dizziness, excess head mucus (stuffiness), Heartburn, joint pains that travel, Hyperactivity, irregular heartbeat, lack of sex drive, low energy, metallic taste in mouth, muscular pain, and panic attacks are some of the signs of over-acidity. More bothersome things like Asthma, Bacterial and Fungal infections, Bronchitis, Cold sores, Depression, Ear aches, Flu and Colds, Gastritis, Hay Fever, Insomnia, Migraine headaches, Psoriasis and Sinusitis are also symptoms of over-acidity. And, most seriously, Cancer (all forms), Crohn’s disease, Erythematosis, Hodgkin’s disease, Leukaemia, Multiple Sclerosis, Schizophrenia, Systemic Lupus, and Rheumatoid Arthritis are all linked to an over-acidic diet. So, the more acidic your foods digest the more infections, cancer and other diseases can take up residency in your body and in the end, the food you eat will be your demise.

80-20_Diet_mediumResearchers and authors alike, find that the ratio of 80% Alkaline-forming and 20% Acid-forming foods is the key to food therapy. The basic premise that Cancer can not grow in an Alkaline environment was convincing enough for me to take a look further. I think the evidence that wheat, sugar/high-fructose corn syrup and industrial seed oils are toxic to the body and contribute to virtually all modern, degenerative diseases – from diabetes and obesity to heart and autoimmune disease is solid. And, yet I am a skeptic. I am not interested in promoting some new fad or diet that is the same old, same old crap. I want to be healed. I want healing! I can’t explain how it feels to know that something is growing in my body that doesn’t have permission. It is infuriating and confusing. However, knowledge is power and as I learn more and more about food science, there are little battles being won. My hope is by seeking education and understanding in this matter and by being diligent and disciplined that what I put into my body will help to fight the terrorists who are trying to take my body captive. My hope is that by relaying this information, you will also be inspired to look deeper into the God-given resources that are available, that you will feel empowered to fight the good fight.

But, what does that mean? How does it work?

Here is what I’m learning at the moment.

Balance is important. My daily food intake consists of 80% alkaline forming (mostly fruit and vegetables), while 20% can be acid-forming (protein and starch). They can be eaten at different meals, so if I eat meats (acid-forming) as a meal, I must have alkaline-forming foods for the rest of the day. If I have a day of too much acid-forming food, I can balance up by eating 90-100% alkaline-forming foods for a few days to restore alkalinity.

acid-alkaline-food-chart1I started by eliminating 20% unhealthiest foods in my diet including processed foods, white sugar, flour, dairy and meat. I kept a food journal for 1-2 weeks as well as making a mental note of how foods make me feel. Then, using a 80/20 food chart, I began to craft a menu that would incorporate the foods my body needed to create a non-inviting environment for the cancer. I’m still working on that, and have learnt to be patient. Changes can only happen at my body’s organic pace. I’ve also learned to be patient with others. This is new to me and my ability to communicate effectively what I can and can’t eat has been cumbersome and awkward. But, folks are generally accommodating and the more I understand the smoother the communication is becoming.

I’ve also learned that rest and sleep are alkalizers.  Emotions also play into our bodies PH levels. So, my focus is on taking pleasure in the little things, laughter, good conversations, love while eliminating fear, worry, anger, gossip, and envy.

So what foods do I eat?

In the morning I make a smoothy packed with some or all of these alkalizing foods, Mango, watermelon, lemon, kiwi, pineapple, cayenne pepper, ginger, cinnamon, raw spinach, raw kale, 1 tbs coconut oil, avocado, and almond milk.

For lunch I usually eat a salad with lots of greens, asparagus, red onion, bell pepper, beets, radish, cucumbers, etc…

This is a concoction that I made up. It’s light and refreshing and 90/10, so gives me reserve for the evening meal.

IMG_0106-525x350_thumbSweet Potato, Fennel Wraps
Serves 4
 
4 Spelt flour wraps (can also use flat bread made with cornmeal, rice or amaranth flour)
1 Tbs Coconut Oil
Sweet Potato, peeled and thinly sliced 
Fresh Fennel, washed and thinly sliced
Red Onion, thinly sliced
Avocado, cored and sliced
Red Cabbage, thinly sliced
Rocket (Arugula) 
Cayenne pepper/Pink Himalayan Salt (To taste)
 
In a small frying pan, heat oil. Add Sweet Potato and Fennel. Salt and pepper to taste, Sauté for 3-5 min until slightly soft and remove from heat. Let cool. 
Line each wrap with all of the fresh ingredients, add sautéed veggie’s and fold. 
Enjoy with a fresh fruit salad or a quinoa salad. (Or enjoy without the wrap as a salad.) 
 

If I have been mostly alkaline all day, I might include a piece of fish or glass of red wine in my evening meal.

I use a number of resources online to look up food items to see where they sit on the Ph scale. I have found that in my baking I can compromise with coconut sugar or maple syrup, and coconut oil has become my go to in all cooking or baking. Besides the benefit of being on the alkalinizing side of the Ph scale, it is also the only oil that actually helps  to lose belly fat. I am experimenting with different gluten-free flours, and really like Pamela’s artisan flour which includes a mixture of Brown Rice Flour, Tapioca Starch, White Rice Flour, Potato Starch, Sorghum Flour, Arrowroot Starch, Sweet Rice Flour, Guar Gum.

One of my favorite blogs on the subject is by The Alkaline Sisters, they have recipes and more ideas. Check them out at: http://www.alkalinesisters.com/sisters-blog/

When the motivation is to “stay alive” it changes your perspective on diet. I’m not interested in promoting some fad diet or having political debates about food, I just want to live, and live well!

So, if I’m coming to your house for dinner, don’t fret. I’m not a food fascist and won’t be judging what you put on the table. I’ll eat what I can with a grateful heart, and trust that if you are ever in a situation where something foreign tries to take your joy, you’ll already have a life line and a friend in me.

8020ChartFrontlg

To read the whole story from start to finish click here.

Perspective on Healing; Part 1 

Perspective on Healing; Part 2

Perspective on Healing; Part 3

A Perspective on Healing Part 3

Cancer In the human experience, story is of the utmost importance. It is nearly impossible to tell our stories without the intertwining of others stories within our own. That is the beauty of it all. That is the beauty of my story with cancer. It’s a story that includes conversations with God, with medical professionals, and with anyone who would listen. And, eventually lead to an introduction to Debbie, a cancer survivor and warrior. Her story is now my story.

*Please note that this entry has some graphic images. So don’t read further if you have a queasy stomach.

I am three weeks into the healing process and this is my practical experience with the Black Salve. I started with a small area near my eye. It had been flaking/itching for about three months. Based on the 5000 photos on google images and WebMD descriptions of different types of cancer, my educated guess is that this one was Squamous Cell Carcinoma. This non-melanoma skin cancer may appear as a firm red nodule, a scaly growth that bleeds or develops a crust, or a sore that doesn’t heal. It most often occurs on the nose, forehead, ears, lower lip, hands, and other sun-exposed areas of the body. Squamous cell carcinoma is curable if caught and treated early.

During my first 48 hours of treatment my body responded with aggression as the white blood cells began to fight. I was immediately exhausted and it took me about three days to be functioning at 80%. I had a slight head ache above my right eye during the whole process.

I was vigilant about my eating habits, trying to alkaline my body’s PH by eliminating meat, dairy, wheat and refined sugars. I took immune building supplements, made smoothies with mango, kale, banana, raspberry, lemon, lime, ginger and almond milk. I ate lots of greens, used an ionizer in my liquids and took chlorophyl drops. Every morning and evening I would clean my escher with peroxide and dab it with vitamin E oil before covering with a band-aid. The total process took two weeks. Based on the size of the Escher it was most likely pre-cancerous.

After my first round, I decided to attack a spot on my nose. It arrived six months prior and at first, seemed like a blemish. I tried to pop it but instead of a pimple coming out, blood appeared. It never really healed over and continued to itch and bleed.

Based on my research and educated guess this one was stage one, Basal cell carcinoma. This is the most common and easiest-to-treat skin cancer. Basal cell tumors can take on many forms, including a pearly white or waxy bump, often with visible blood vessels, on the ears, neck, or face. Tumors can also appear as a flat, scaly, flesh-colored or brown patch on the back or chest, or more rarely, a white, waxy scar. The stage is based on the size of the tumor, how deeply into the skin it has grown, and whether cancer has spread beyond the tumor to the lymph nodes. In stage one, the tumor is 2 centimeters wide or smaller. It may have spread into the dermis but has not invaded the muscle, cartilage, or bone and has not spread to lymph nodes or other organs.

I only felt tired the first day with this one. The process moved much faster, taking a week from start to finish. I did not have pain or headaches, only slight swelling at the beginning and itching near the end of the process.

Also note; there is a sore near my eye that also arrived about six months ago. During this process it began to respond to what was happening on my nose and it started to shrink. I will more than likely treat that spot next. Just going to wait until after the Holidays and all of the Christmas photos. 🙂

A Perspective on Healing Part 1

Healing MedicineWhen it comes to our health, there is an ebb and flow between managing and healing.

Ultimately, the day we are born we begin to die and so the idea of managing that process is appealing. However, when debilitating disease or life threatening accidents happen we begin to not just pursue managing but we fervently seek healing. We want to live!

Around the world different people groups and cultures have valued both but have not always had a balance.  Our Western Medicine culture tips heavy towards the managing side. In Western Medicine there is more of  an emphasis on expertise, counting on professionals, science labs and pharmaceutical companies to create ways to manage issues and prolong our health. Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing but systemically in the United States our medical ethos is driven by the almighty dollar and doesn’t always have our best interest at hand. It is precipitated by the consumer’s demand for the healing process to move quickly; even if it is not natural, even if it may have side effects and have repercussions down the line.

For instance, if one were to experience a common inner ear infection, the prescription would most likely be suspension (synthetic) drops and possibly antibiotics. Those resources can only be had by going to a doctor to diagnose the ear infection and write the prescription out for the patient. Three things happen here, one because we have to go to an expert to get a diagnose, we enter the system and essentially say we are not qualified to take ownership of our healthcare. Two, because it is the accepted practice, if one doesn’t go to a doctor for a diagnosis there is less credibility and those around the one suffering may have less empathy. Basically, having the doctor affirm your diagnoses give it credibility. And, third, because we’ve put so much trust in the system, we don’t question the prescription. Or, if we do, it’s really only to know what to prepare for once we take it. (i.e.. dizziness, nausea, etc…)

But, what if one were to opt out? Swim upstream? What if we were to look a the relationship between natural resources that the earth has to offer and our bodies God-given ability to heal? What if we were to even go as far as to seek supernatural healing?

Chances are those who are die-hard Western Medicine supporters would view this exploration unfavorably. They would label these free thinkers as homeopathic freaks or fruit loops living off the grid, new agers, rebellious, trouble makers, leftists, outcasts but really at the heart of it they would be viewed as irresponsible. And responsibility is a big deal in a society that defines it as “following the rules, not questioning authority and duty.”

However, there is a rising up of well-rounded, intelligent, responsible, citizens who are finding the current system out of balance and seeking other resources.  I had the pleasure of meeting one of those citizens two weeks ago. Debbie, a suburban mother, wife and business owner, welcomed our family into her home. After a lovely meal, Debbie began to share her journey fighting stage four melanoma near her left temple. She shared how the Lord lead her to an alternative option. My ears perked because I was diagnosed two years ago before we left in our bus. Those spots have been removed but a few new spots showed up about six months ago.

I have had all sorts of input about what and how I should be caring for myself from reliable resource, folks who love me and are concerned for my health. 95% of the folks have a panicked and demanding tone in their advice to “Go Get It Checked Out.”  However, we have no formal insurance, so I can’t play the game exactly the way most people do. I have to find creative ways to work within the system on a limited cash basis. Because of the fact, I’m a bit more hands on and picky with my health care and the care of my family.  And needless to say, two years ago when I went to the dermatologist I wasn’t won over by his expertise or charm.

healing_1So, over the past six months I, along with my family, have been praying for supernatural healing and we’ve been sharing our need for healing and provision with anyone who will listen. Open to going the modern medical route but waiting for the right connection, for the right referral. Waiting is hard, but we have learned that God hears. I just never guessed it would come the way it did.

Here’s the thing though, as a person of faith and having experienced God’s faithfulness to the fullest, it makes total sense. At the end of the day, this meeting with Debbie was one more reminder that God went for the jugular when he sent his own son. He didn’t deal with the problem as something remote and unimportant. My body will surely die, one day. But until then any healing that happens in my life, physically, emotionally or spiritually is purely a reflection of what Jesus did when he personally took on the human condition, entered the disordered mess of struggling humanity in order to set it right once and for all.

There is much more to cover and I will write a Part 2, offering all of the details about Debbie’s story and how it is interwoven with mine. In Part 3 I will share the tangible process that I’ve been going through to fight my skin cancer. Part 4 I try to understand nutritional therapy and Part 5  I chronicle the emotional toll that the healing process takes.

Thank you for reading, and for your continued prayers and well wishes.