Monday, June 18, 2012

Raw Thoughts



" There is life before a cancer diagnosis and life after the diagnosis....life will never be the same as before." Somebody at the klinik this week said this to me and it really had me thinking. Prior to my devastating news years ago, life was good....Mike and I were living it up and enjoying all the stuff that most young couples enjoy. We were both happy, our love for one another was radiating and we were settling into our careers.

Then BAM, Lisa has stage III melanoma....and has to undergo surgery, chemo, and radiation. And if thats not enough a year later Lisa has stage IV cancer....the cancer metastasized to her spleen, hip bone, lungs, and liver. Clinical trial? Conventional? Holistic? Decisions decisions... On top of it all a month or so after initially diagnosed Mike proposed.... a day I will never forget that will forever make me smile ear to ear and elicit goosebumps instantly on my skin. The whats-suppose-to-be-joyous wedding planning, was tainted with my, with our, fight against cancer. When I was in it I was happy to have a distraction and truckin along with treatment, decorating our new beautiful home, and for the meticulous Virgo in me, hastily, rather than anally, planning our wedding. I was happy as ever on our wedding day but I was sick, and not myself. I used every little ounce of energy in me to enjoy and dance the night away. The Italy wedding and honeymoon was also tainted by the cancer. I lost energy to go gallivanting toward the end of the honeymoon and became really sick from indulging in all the delicious Mediterranean cheeses and bread.  Our Italy wedding was amazing as anything but I was so weak ...so sick...so emotional.

Looking back, our young lives were so impacted, and we both began to feel the normal stressors that come along with cancer. We were so strong, together, but there comes a point where it builds and builds and you begin to break. Truthfully, no one really knows the impact unless your living it first hand. Will Lisa live? Will this be a life long battle? These thoughts are tough and take there toll. Do I work and take a paycut? No, I cant... I would feel horrible not contributing to our household. Im not a homebody....my mind needs to be preoccupied. But should I dedicate my time to healing and curing myself? The dietary tweaking was constant. Should I eat this? Am I allowed this? I will just stick to vegetables because I know thats safe. But NO.....what about protein, fruits, and grains? There were many losses to get used to. Do I continue to go to Switzerland? Its disgustingly costly....I feel terrible the astronomical amount this is costing my parents. My dad worked so hard....for what....sending his daughter for this ridiculously costing holistic care? Why do I have this privilege to undergo this biological treatment? What about other people who are suffering that would never be able to afford this? There was always important decisions to be pondered about. Socially things became difficult....I couldnt drink alcohol, I could no longer indulge in the fun Italian dinners at my in-laws, I had to eat very specifically and Mike was supportive and followed my strict diet.  Mike's diet changes brought me guilt. Its unfair... I wanted him to enjoy his lifelong comfort and "manly" foods. Despite knowing it was healthier for him you still get comfort out of seeing those people you love enjoy their food, especially their traditional foods. I was so focused on curing myself. I had tunnel vision....cancer....I need to cure this cancer....what could I research next....what could I blog about.....what else should I do to help myself...infusion? acupuncture? work? preparing healthy food? morning regimen of ....enema, drinking supplement drinks, taking drops and downing pills? physical therapy? lymphatic massage? exercise? Hmmm....how much can I fit in a day? What about whats most important? My relationships, my amazing husband and making time for those people in my life that keep me going. That naturally gets lost in this I -got-to-fight-this-god-damn-cancer journey.  

So, yes, its very true that life prior to being diagnosed will never be the same but whos to say which is better? Im thankful from all that I learned since being diagnosed. I feel a hell of a lot healthier now then I did in the past and I learned how to treat our bodies. Mike as well....he is super fit and health conscious. Everything happens in stages....baby steps...and eventually the balance between extreme diet and a healthy diet routine comes into play. You learn that your allowed to indulge every once in awhile and have to live a little. You find peace in talking to fellow cancer/life threatening disease warriors. The importance of "giving back" becomes that more heightened. Who is truly there for you is revealed. You learn to appreciate life for what it is and focus on whats really important rather than the gluttony and the need to want want want. You lose patience for people's bullshit. You distance yourself from those who lead stressful days and unnecessary dramatic antics. After going through a very tough situation first hand, its difficult to wrap your head around the nonsense and the unnecessary drama that people create in their own lives. You learn to let go and realize that its not worth it to stress about. These are only things that could harm our morale and central nervous system. You appreciate everyday for what it is and enjoy it. You feel a real sense of gratitude that you are fortunate to have the opportunity to be able to undergo such life changing yet costly treatment. You learn that anything is possible with the support from one another. You value relationships that much more. You learn the beauty ad intensity of a parents love for their daughter.  You learn to balance and prioritize whats most important for the mind and body and spend time with those people you love in your life. You learn to be conscious of breath and value your body on a totally new level. You learn that positive attitude and energy is critical. You learn that cancer is NOT an outside invader and that the internal milieu must be completely revamped. The dietary changes and new lifestyle becomes routine and not so alien-like.  You learn the power of love and that its the number one and best treatment that one will ever have. You learn that life post cancer diagnosis is better in many ways then pre cancer diagnosis....

Much Love and Appreciation,

LiSa



23 comments:

Anonymous said...

Lee-this is a good reminder to everyone about how we should all be viewing our lives. Love and hugs.
Kristin (Kane) Fuerst

3520c870-b993-11e1-b35b-000bcdcb2996 said...

Lisa, what a beautiful entry and thank you so much for sharing with me and so many others, It's hard for most people to understand what you and Mike have faced. let alone at such a young age.

You are an amazing young woman with such an optimistic outlook who continues to find the blessings with this Beast called Melanoma.

Your blog is a beautiful tribute to all you and Mike have faced and continue to go through and the amazing Man he is as well. I can't wait for us to meet so that I can give both of you the biggest hug,

Sending you both big hugs and positive thoughts.,
Love and Light
Carole

Anonymous said...

Love reading your blog. Keep up the fight and know you have any people praying and supporting you that you don't even realize. Much love to you andMike.

Donna said...

You bring tears to my eyes!! You're making so much of this journey and you're learning so much and teaching so much and changing so much... I could not be prouder of you!! I miss you and hope everything is going well in Switzerland. Can't wait to see u soon!!

South Shore Homes Solutions, LLC said...

Your put The power of positive thinking and the power of love to a whole different level Li, and for that I and the world thanks you.

We should all be living a physically and mentally healthy life with or without cancer. You put it into perspective for us.

XOXO, M

"I believe that every single event in life happens in an opportunity to choose love over fear."
- Oprah Winfrey

Randy Bultena said...

Read a few of your posts and I have a question, do you still take /believe in Cellect? Thanks!

Randy B

Anonymous said...

hi Lisa, I enjoy reading your blog so much. I hope you are getting all of your strength back! God Bless You! Jen

Amber said...

Well said, LIsa! I'm so happy to hear that your recovery from the surgery is going well and that you are continuing to see and feel progress. You've worked so hard for this. I'm thrilled for you.

Things are going well on this end and I hope to go back to Switzerland in August. You made quite an impression on Sofia last year. Here hair has gotten quite long and while looking in the mirror last week she said she couldn't wait until her hair was a long as Lisa's.

I'll email soon with more updates. Until then, all the best to you, and please pass along our hellos to your mom.

Hugs,
Amber

Anonymous said...

Hi Lisa, I stumbled upon your website after learning that my cousin's Stage III melanoma just came back as Stage IV. Your blog is giving me the hope that I desperately need. Thank you so much for sharing your journey. You are so strong and such an inspiration, and I am really rooting for you to beat this beast because the world needs more warriors like you. All the best, Kimberly

LiSa said...

Kris,

Thanks for the comment... Very true...sometimes we forget what's important in life. xoxo

Lisa

LiSa said...

Thanks carole!!! Your kind words were appreciated. I can't wait to meet you too!!! And give you a big hug, your an inspiration to me. Hope all is well and lets get together soon.

Lisa

LiSa said...

Thank you anonymous. It's those prayers and thoughts that get us through!! Thanks so much for posting a comment.

Much love,

Lisa

LiSa said...

Hi love dove,

You are so right Donna, I learned a ton on this journey and am now living a life I never thought I would be. You know what they say...everything happens for a reason. I can't wait to hang out and catch up ;) love ya

Lisa

LiSa said...

Aww thanks M!! Sometimes we are not mindful of what's really important in life and I'm glad I could put that in perspective for others. Thanks for following and. Ring one of my biggest fans ;)

Love you,

Lisa

LiSa said...

Hi randy,

Yes is till take cellect and believe in it very much. I wouldn't think of missing it one day in my life. Fred's theory makes complete sense and our internal mileus need to be replenished with necessary vitamins and minerals. I've seen many people's diseases reverse solely due to cellect. Therefore in a big believer!! Hope that helps!

Lisa

LiSa said...

Thanks Jen!! I surely do feel my strength is back! Thanks for following my journey and for writing a comment!

Much love,

Lisa

Anonymous said...

Hey there-

Great seeing you guys this past weekend...life after cancer is 100% different, having gone through it with my Mom at such a young age, it's influenced every decision I've ever made-for the better. I grew up overnight, but I've learned what's important and those things are everything you've blogged about above. It's one hell of a fight you're fighting but your positive attitude and the love and support around you has carried you so far! Love you and Mike tons! Keep up the good work, you're getting there...

Erin

Anonymous said...

Hi Lisa,

Thank you for all of the valuable information. If you had to chose only 5 supplements, what 5 would you choose in your battle against melanoma? Kim

Anonymous said...

Finally there is proof beyond the epidemiological evidence that UV exposure does cause gene mutations that lead to melanoma. I know you were skeptical about this and perhaps you will find this article interesting and helpful.
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120719132610.htm

Namaste

amanda said...

lisa marie how did i miss this post?? you brightened my day, thank you for this beautiful and inspiring post- to match the beautiful inspiring girl who wrote it. all my love always <3

LiSa said...

Aww thanks Amanda!!! You brightened my day with your sweet words! Feeling your love always......thanks for your support throughout this journey. xoxo to you and the fam

LiSa said...

Hi Kim,

My apologies that it took me so long to respond......for some reason I didn't see this comment till just now. My top five would be Cellect, injections of mistletoe, no processed foods and only whole real food, vitamin c infusion, and probiotics (since 80% of the immune system is in the gut.....digestion has to be working!)

Hope that helps.

Lisa

LiSa said...

Kimberly,

Thank you for your comment. I hope that your cousin finds some useful information from my blog and I wish them the very best. If I could help in anyway please let me know. I appreciate that you are rooting for me. I will for sure beat melanoma and continue being a warrior.

All my best,

Lisa