I saw it two days before in the eyes of the ER ultrasound tech as she held the scanning wand over my abdomen. She fought to control the tears in her eyes, but her look of shock and concern was unmistakable even to me, already drugged with morphine.
Dying? That’s ridiculous, I thought. I’m not dying. Never mind that if things continued as they had — me curled in a fetal position from the pain and constant nausea, refusing to eat — I would have died within weeks.
My beloved would not let that happen. He would not let me drift off into a morphine haze. He fought for me even before I was ready to fight for myself.
Everything changed that day. Everything. We went home from the hospital exactly two years ago after pokes, prods, and scans that confirmed the worst of the ultrasound tech’s suspicions.
Cancer had spread to my brain.
My Year of Living Cancerously
That first year was the hardest of my life. For months I could stand up for only a few minutes at a time. Some days I could only lie on the couch and disappear into the haze of my thoughts, unable to sit up or write a cohesive sentence. Reading took too much energy.
My world got very small.
We researched for weeks and did everything we could think of to keep the cancer from spreading further and taking over entirely while making my body stronger to do what bodies are designed to do. No chemo. I was adamant. Chemo would have killed me.
I drank freshly made green juices literally all day. Five coffee enemas every day for that first year. I let people zap my brain with radiation. All my time and energy went to staying alive.
Many times I wondered if it was worth it.
Light at the end of a year-long tunnel
Finally, some light at the end of a year-long dark tunnel. Tantra and sexual healing. Reclaiming my relationship to spirit and the divine. New off-label prescription meds not designed for cancer but yet make cancer cells die. Creation of a compelling future that included yumminess, sensuality, art, and love. Things got better. I started to feel better. Slowly, slowly.
And in the past year, Year Two of Living Cancerously, so many more changes. Repatterning, old non-serving beliefs replaced with beliefs that better align with the reality I’m co-creating, healing of sexual traumas and wounds, claiming truths and personal power, and rebuilding my body with hot power yoga into a better body than I’ve ever had.
And love. So much love. We don’t heal alone.
My Bold New Life has begun
Now my beloved and I step into our Bold New Life in the San Diego area. Already welcomed by community. Nourished by ocean and sun. Ready burst forth into the world with the work we were meant to do.
Two years after that nightmare of a day in the ER, we moved into our first Real Home in California. Auspicious day indeed. So much to look forward to.
While I’m not yet ready to say thank you, Cancer, for all you taught me, I’m deeply thankful that I know what I know now, both about myself and about the world.
- Without cancer, I might not have claimed my place as an artist
- Without cancer, I might not have become a dakini (tantra healer)
- Without cancer, I might not have been motivated to work my ass off at yoga 5-6 times a week
- Without cancer, I might still be eating an “okay” diet instead of the amazing diet that is rebuilding every cell in my body
- Without cancer, I might not have learned so much about life
- Without cancer, I might not have learned to let people help me when I need it
- Without cancer, I might not have fully embraced my goddess self
- Without cancer, I might still be afraid to truly LIVE
- Without cancer, I might not appreciate the gift of life as much as I do
- Without cancer, I would be a different woman
I like the woman I am now.
And to me, life is an amazing and wondrous gift. It’s up to me what to make of that gift. I choose yummy passion and intimate expression, deep soul connections, and incredible beauty. I choose the entire panoply of human experience: pain, sadness, anger, joy, ecstasy, surrender.
Life is SO worth it.