Cancer is crap and I hate it. I know, I know. Something good comes out of all of these adversities. But something good comes out of a trip to Selfridges (try the salt beef), or around the corner for an ice cream or to an extraordinary art exhibit (the Sacred at the National Gallery) or from seeing a funny movie (Serious Man) or a chat with friends.
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Oh yeah, you may be thinking I’m not going the ‘medical way’. I won’t be dictated to by doctors. Not me, I’m doing it ‘my’ way. I’m juicing, fasting, vitaminizing, visualizing, hypnotizing. I’m doing everything and more; the list gets longer… Deciding which cure becomes an obsessive preoccupation.
Going natural leads to a myriad of decisions.
- Rolfing, visualizing. Aura testing, qi gong.
Here are my favorites… They cost me a lot of money, time and hope and if I could have followed the plan I might be cancer free now. My suspicion is that my life would be a lot more complicated, expensive and not much happier.
This is a list from one nutritionist:
- Multi Vitamin
- GI Repair
- Ultra Probioplex
- Resveratrol etra pur encapsulation
- Eskimo 3 Fish Oil
- Aloe arborescens
- Selenium, viridian
- Adrenal Support
- Liver support
- Pau D arco Plus
- Homocysteine Support
- Bio Magnesium
- Vitamin B Complex]
- Vitamin a
- E Toco
And guess what? They aren’t free! AND you don’t just take one a day.
I’m not debunking these remedies. I’m saying that it’s not a ‘easy’ option. It‘s a minefield of decisions. I bought into it, tried it for about two weeks. I asked for the easy option, which was not to be. So my option was to opt out entirely.
These are to be taken at intervals throughout the day.
The real low down on these vitamins and other potions is to be found at Sloane Kettering, the famous hospital in NYC. They track the research done on natural remedies on their web site, frequently used by the nutrition professionals.
Another healer suggested cabbage soup every day. That lasted about a week.
Decisions, decisions, decisions… We C people have made more than our share. What screening? What operations? What chemo? What diet? What pills? What doctors? AND now, in the US of A, they want to add ‘choices’ to Health Care Insurance just to boggle the mind further. I live in the UK and have very good private health care. It’s cost a bomb but I’m happy with it. BUT, having said that, if for financial reasons I had to stop, I’d be very confident to have treatment on NHS. WHY?
My Oncologist has been with the NHS since she qualified. I’m sure when she goes from her patients at UCH (University College Hospital) across the few streets to Harley Street she changes from a ‘public health’ doctor into a ‘private health’ doctor. But she doesn’t go into a telephone booth like superman (or superwoman) and change into ‘private’ doctor persona. She practices the same medicine. It’s inconceivable that she’d behave differently with private and NHS patients. In her own words, she practices the best medicine she can, every day with every patient.
At the beginning, I did have a very distinguished ‘private consultant’, the kind with a boutonniere. His assistant missed my next cancer entirely, postponing treatment for at least three months. I had streaks on my breast, which she diagnosed as radiation. As soon as my oncologist looked at it she knew it was cancer.
There is a feeling expressed by many ordinary people in Great Britain that if you are seriously ill you are BETTER OFF with the NHS. You have access to all the specialist hospitals, the best consultants and state of the art care. This doesn’t mean that it works out well for everyone. What I’ve found is that social services let people down more than the medical care they receive. But that has nothing to do with NHS Health Care as seen by the USA.
My friend died several months ago after a prolonged struggle with esophagus cancer. He was treated on the NHS. To save his life, he underwent two heart surgeries, all in a specialized heart hospital and with over a months intensive care at UCH (University College Hospital) London. He had the best consultants looking in every day. He had state of the art pain relief so that when he finally died (as he had requested in a living will) it was without pain. If he’d left hospital he would have gone into a hospice that we’d researched visited together. It looked lovely. When you live alone, as he did, the idea of a small cafeteria and a garden with a private room is very inviting. All this under National Health care, which Americans seem to hate, is free!
Do you really want to rely on your private health care?
My friend and I had breakfast at my favorite place and since we were very late I had to meet G (my Sunday movie companion) for lunch at the Ivy. Gobbled down our food and went to see ‘Taking Woodstock”. My generation, and it was a great bit of nostalgia In 1979 friends asked me to go with them, but I was weaning M., my son, and fortunately I said ‘no’. They were stuck in traffic for days. M. has never forgiven me.
Then I went on to meet a friend at a conversation put on by psychoanalysts at UCL with the author Sebastian Faulks. He was very interesting on subject of consciousness and suggested that we might evolve with less consciousness then we have now.
Finished off the evening with ice cream… probably not good. And paid for the weekend. Not a good night, but it was worth it.
15 November, 2009
Bad Monday- but what the hell.
Out of anti sickness meds. My friend, who has worse cancer, whom I need to talk to, is too sick to talk. (Low immunity, grandchildren come in with colds) My first blog name ‘Cancer Schmancer’ is taken by a foundation that gives dances at the Empire Room in NY. One of those days, I guess.
Took to bed all day exhausted.
Going to talk about The Road- a depressing book, but a beautifully written novel.
Decided to venture out to my book club because it was about 15 minutes away by car. Also I’ve been at book club in recent months with a drain tube still in from my operation. I trust this group. They’ve been through health issues with children, grandchildren and husbands. I covered the drain bottle and hoped they weren’t put off. I needed to get out.
All went well until the very end of lunch and I started to feel sick in the loo. I knew I would never be able to drive home. Bad cramps followed. It was a strange, lucky coincidence but L (carer) lives around the corner and took me home. That finished the day. Some days are like this. But the lunch and discussion were very good and it was lovely to see the group. It was worth it. I think you need to trust your friends.
6 November 2009