On February 1st 2008 I was diagnosed with a testicular tumour – cancer in popular parlance. It was a stage 4 (fast growing) malignant tumour, as evidenced by it’s rapid growth over the subsequent 6 weeks, during which it quadrupled in size. This account is a testimonial to my experience in healing from the tumour, against the advice of 3 surgeons, 2 consultants, my family and many of my friends.
I cannot guarantee that the methods I used to heal will work for everyone. In fact, I can probably guarantee the opposite – that my methods are not the ones that are required for anyone else. This is because there are literally hundreds of methods for healing a tumour, and an infinite variety of conditions that can combine to bring a tumour into some ones life. For this reason, every healing will be different, and every journey will be unique.
My diagnosis was of course a shock, I could think of nothing save my new status as ‘cancer diagnosed’ for weeks afterwards. It also felt like a calling. I’d many times asked myself what I would do should I develop cancer, and the answer was always the same – to apply the techniques that I knew about and not allow anyone to inflict damaging treatments upon me which I did not agree with. So my diagnosis was a call to action, a wake up call, a prompt to get real, do what I knew needed to be done, and open myself up to all of the many experiences which were going to be necessary.
No war was ever declared on my tumour, no battle was ever begun, I did not fight my tumour. Those paradigms I believe to wrong, damaging and unhelpful. If you want ot read about a ‘brave battle with cancer’ read the newspapers. Instead a mission was embarked upon to being me back home to myself, to be connected to my whole self, to be able to love all of me, my past, my present and my future. This love found many expressions, and many angels came to answer my call for help, to deliver advice, treatments, well wishing, and healing. Love came in many guises, but love is all that ever came my way, every beneficial experience simply a variety on a theme, the theme of love.
I thought about presenting a book as a page turner – holding out on giving away the ending, as a literary device to make it more absorbing, allowing the pages to follow my own doubt and fears about my decision and how I might cope with failure, pain or death. But I chose to write to inspire rather than entertain, and if you are reading this on account of an experience of your own or that of a loved one you deserve instead to share the certainty that I also felt about the outcome. During the worst times, the long dark night of the soul times, I still always felt that I was intended to come through this unscarred, alive and with a story to deliver. And although I felt trepidation, I never lost a moments sleep over my condition. My decision was always underpinned by the strength of knowing that I had reached my own personal limit, a threshold that I would not cross, a rubicon, a point of no return. For me, living life as I had been, without the self awareness that I craved, without a delight in life and a hunger for the future, without a real desire to be here, was not a life that I was satisfied to carry on with unchanged. I knew that the journey to true healing would be an immense journey of self discovery, and that I would rather die than allow that to pass me by. For me the decision was taken already, a life not enjoyed was not a life worth living. I needed this journey, my soul was crying out to be healed, to come home, to be at peace in this body, on this planet, at this time. That was the true healing which had already commenced the moment that I walked out of the hospital with a new reality to face.
The truth about cancer is this: It is entirely curable. There are many ways to cure cancer. Anyone who tells you otherwise is ill informed. There are no guarantees that a person will survive the experience, for everybody who develops a tumour there is a different journey and not everybody is meant to live through it. Your journey, should you be called to it, will depend upon you, and on how you choose to interpret your life, your situation, and your healing. Your highest service may involve your death, or it may involve your living on. That, at some level, is always your choice, and always will be.
I’d walked into Paddington hospital on Friday with a lump, and walked out with an appointment on Monday to have a testical removed. Simple as that. ‘Don’t worry’ the registrar had said, ‘You’ll still be able to have children and just in case you need it you can put some into storage….’
A whole day of waiting, and receiving the bad news, it began with a specialist having a feel, an ultrasound to visually confirm what was already apparent, and a bleak prognosis. We’d not discussed treatment options that much by the time I left, I get the feeling that not many people question the need for surgery, so when I said that I’d think about it the surgery had been scheduled anyway, I received a call on Monday morning to check that I was still coming in that afternoon. Thanks, but no thanks I said. ‘I have my own treatments to work with first – surgery is an option of last resort, not the first.’
The paradigms which underpin ‘orthodox’ medical approaches to cancer do not hold up to scrutiny. Cancer is an epidemic which is out of control, to which the established institutions have no answer. My belief, backed up by my experience, is that anyone who wishes to heal from cancer is required to take their treatment into their own hands. This approach will bring up a lot of resistance, and anyone in this position needs to know some of the concern, objections and anger that such a decision will provoke. Cancer is an emotive subject, many vociferous arguments come to find those who either question the status quo, or imply that the victims of the medical orthodoxy would have been able to survive had they decided differently when given their prognosis.
It is one of the fundamental mistakes of ‘conventional’ medicine to attempt to treat a standard human being. This mistake is designed into the protocol of drug creation, trialling, and assessment, and leads to many deaths of the deaths which are brought about by the use of prescription drugs. A naturopathic, humanistic approach does not make the same mistake, and relies on an individual approach for every individual.
Before I go on, consider this: Medicine and medical intervention is the third leading cause of death in the UK!
Bucking the trend...
‘….. to heal from (testicular cancer) is very, very rare.’
‘We cannot support your decision …. It is totally against our advice….’
‘He is working out his issues with authority.’
‘If you won’t take any of our advice, you only told us to inflict pain and worry and it would be better if you’d not said anything.’
‘We’ve done everything we can to support your decision, now will you please reconsider and have surgery.’
‘If you don’t take the surgery option now, then it will probably be too late by the time you come back and the cancer has had the chance to metastasise to other areas of your body from where we cannot surgically remove the tumours.’
‘You are so obstinate, you don’t ever listen to anything we have to say to you.’
‘Just get it removed, you don’t have to keep it, you can do all the alternative healing you wish after you have had surgery. It’s serious.’
‘Mate have it taken out, don’t mess around just get it done….’
‘The survival rates with surgery are very good, there is a 99% cure…..’
‘You’ve just been brainwashed by all that stuff…. ‘
‘If you don’t have treatment you’re going to die, I can’t let you just carry on and not say anything.’
I won’t attribute the quotes above. Some of them are from people who really cared about me, some are from medical professionals who were well practised in the art of not being involved, who have succeeded in becoming entirely unemotional and unattached about the fate of the patients that they see. They have learned literally to not care less. About their patients, they are careless, which is why they are able to continue to dispense treatment that is damaging to life and wellbeing despite all evidence that this is the case.
Interestingly, I was reading a survey of doctors in the oncology field, and the large majority of them stated that they would not undergo chemotherapy themselves if they ‘required’ it. This says everything about the efficacy, and the effects of that treatment.
After telling my family of my tumour, I swiftly decided that I could not afford to expend all my energy convincing the people around me that I was doing the right thing. Nearly every conversation was a drain on my resources; however that energy needed to go inwards, to me, to support my mental health and keep me optimistic. There is a time for giving, and a time for looking after oneself, and cancer demands a certain degree of selfishness. And it’s a whole lot easier when talking only with those who understand this, and understand the possibilities that are available to those who take alternative treatments. The orthodox treatments are the risky, unsafe option, the alternative options have a far better survival rate, but not many people are aware of this. Therefore they will attempt to influence from their own understanding.
Before the all clear
When I wrote this post we were coming towards the end of August; the wettest August on record according to the papers, one of the best according to me. Rain or shine, I am finally glad to be here, I’m behaving in ways which are closer and closer to my own ideals, while I also nurture myself.
The partner who came into my life fully and completely whilst supporting my journey is with me and we are sharing the adventure in other ways now, living out a dream of spending summer living in the bus that we converted into a camper van (a project that I threw myself into with verve whilst healing from Cancer – I think I was grateful for the ‘normality’ of the work), running the business that is growing ever more strong (which together we continued to run whilst carrying out an extensive regime of cleansing and detox), continuing the journey down many different avenues.
Cancer for me has been a beginning in many ways, the beginning of a life partnership certainly, but also to a new relationship with myself. I am here, in my body, on this planet, I do not expend so much energy denying or avoiding this, I’ve begun to stop ruing my birth. Cancer was a continuation of many of the changes which have led me here, and are still ongoing, but it was also in many ways a high water mark. In one five year period I have created a litany of crises in my life, while this has been the most threatening it has also been by far the most enjoyable. By saying yes to life this year, I have finally been able to say yes to life, for the rest of my life.