Friday, October 31, 2014

Day 23: David and Goliath

I received great news today. My bone marrow biopsy shows no signs of malignancy. Take that cancer!  It was a total fist pump moment. My thoughts and prayers are with my brothers and sisters who also have received news that buoys them and also with those that received news that didn't pump them up. 

News can go either way. 

My thoughts these days have been a lot about the mind-body-spirit connection of my disease. I've been engrossed with the injustice that my body would do this to me when I have spent the last five years altering our environment, food, lifestyle so that we are all healthier and cleaner eaters. I have been so wrapped up in the negativity and injustice of it all. And I've been secretly fearful that the diagnosis would discredit me and my approach to a healthy, Christ-centered lifestyle. Who takes health tips from a cancer patient?

You will, that's who--because there is far more to a healthy life than a diagnosis. This is a blip in time. But when good news comes, we need to celebrate these small victories because they lift us up through the long haul. The better your attitude, the more successful you will be with anything. 

What I have come to learn--a light bulb moment if you will--about this diagnosis is to turn my thinking around about it and my health practices. Instead of thinking that I got cancer even though I practice all these healthy behaviors--how about thinking how strong my body is to defeat this disease. My blood work is amazing. I show no signs of the disease except in my tumors and scans. I have my fitness and my mental strength, great vitals and an amazing can-do attitude (when I haven't buried it under self-pity). Yes, my history of auto-immune disease makes me more susceptible to lymphoma, but this is not anything I can control outside of what I do. It's been insanely frustrating to read all these books about getting away from the Standard American Diet and avoiding processed food, eating clean and organic and avoiding chemicals and pesticides...Etc, etc, etc. Well, I do all this and this still happened.  It can still happen to me or to anyone else In this same position. I'm learning to think of it in terms of how healthy I have made my body to defeat this disease. Over and over again if need be. You see, I am starting from the top of the mountain in facing this disease, not the bottom of this hill. 

Sometimes when we change our mindset about the situations we are in, we can move from feeling defeated to feeling a warrior. Attitude completely determines perception of events. My attitude is bigger than my cancer. Sometimes a positive attitude makes you David over Goliath.