Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Page 31 - 34

‘Cancer – 50 Essential Things to Do’ is a book by Greg Anderson which I used as a guide to journal what I needed to work through in the immediate aftermath of being diagnosed with Stage 4 Inflammatory Breast Cancer in February, 2006. I knew already that I cannot allow this to be a run-away horse.

Quotes from the book will be in italics.

Evaluate Your Self-Talk (32):

Fear does not overwhelm us without our consent.

*Self-talk is the ancestor of your current experience of illness and life.

Situation A – you are angry at the doctor for his arrogance, his impatience with your questions, and the limited amount of time e spends with you.

My positive self-talk: I am in control of my medical team and this doctor’s actions are unacceptable. Since I am not intimidated by the process I will let this doctor know, very clearly, that I expect my questions to be answered and that at my next appointment he may need to schedule more time as this is my life and I have a vested interest in it. I understand he may have many patients, but I need him or someone (nurse) he believes can speak for him to spend more time with me.

Situation B – It’s 3 a.m. and you’re wide awake, consumed with thoughts and fears of suffering and self-pity.

My positive self-talk: This is helping no one. It’s three in the morning and I need my sleep. I’m not suffering and when/or if I ever do, there will be lots of time for me to feel sorry for myself then. Fear is the mind killer and I have nothing to fear because God is with me.

Situation C – Your energy level is at an all-time low. You are tired and discouraged, questioning if you can take any more.

My positive self-talk: I will need to let my medical team know that I have no energy and I am feeling depressed. They can tell me what I need to boost my energy level and in the meantime I will make an appointment with the oncology psych worker to talk over how I am feeling. This is where my social support team will be needed.

My self-talk is positive.

Choose A Daily Affirmation (33):

Mom’s affirmation: In every day and every way I am feeling better.

Affirmations are consciously chosen self-talk.

I love life; this is my moment.

There is nothing in all the world I fear.

I am free from worry. I know peace.

The Lord is my Shepherd. I shall not want.

Manage Your Toxic Stress (34):

Toxic stress is emotional overload.

Stress works at cross-purposes to wellness.

Pick a phrase which triggers the relaxation response. ‘The Lord is my Shepherd.’

*artwork by my dear friend Lynne Hoppe


Dawn said...

I LOVE your positivity and that is why I am blessed to have you as a FRIEND!!!!

Sarah said...

Hmmm self talk is a powerful thing. Teaching yourself to "Change your mind" in a literal way is tricky work. These pages always make me think!! So relevant to everyone. Hope things are good with you hon! How is everyone doing??
Jim will be home tomorrow - a couple of days early - WHOO HOOO..
Love you hon, Sarah

yoborobo said...

First, Renee - I love this art piece. I could stare at it for hours, it's so relaxing. I think there is much for me to take into my life from this post. The 3 o-clock in the morning worry time is my specialty! I need to come up with a phrase that I can think of when the worries take over. Much to chew on today. :) Sending you my prayers, dear one! xoxox Pam

Silver said...

Sending you healing thoughts and love.


Deborah said...

Renee, your cancer book and your personal advise is perfect for life in general. I love having a "relaxation phrase". I have two; I have everything I need, and for very negative thinking, NOT HELPING. Endless prayers never ceasing for you, my love, and your beloveds. Deborah

Jenny S said...

My mom has been kicking cancer's butt for that last 9 years (breast cancer). It is hard but if you saw her you would never know she is sick. She does not let it control her, she controls it!!! You are in my thoughts!!

@eloh said...

Odd how you stumble on things and read them, just at that moment you need it most.

Thanks for this post. I really needed it.

Allegra Smith said...

I just think of the coming Spring when things get a bit out of hand, and mostly I can only blame that on myself because I want to do. I just want to go out and water the tomatoes, prune things around the potager, clean a closet, whatever. And the poor old shell is fighting the invasion of chemistry as foreign to it as a Moon made of cheese.

So I think Spring, when Charlies come to the garden and call out my name, when the roses begin to sprout little red leaves and the bees knock at the door of the lavender requesting permission to enter and take some pollen. Spring.
When everything is new again.

...and your answers are wise and gentle and true. Just like you.

karengberger said...

Again, Renee, you minister to us with your honesty and openness. This book is a great gift, and you are giving concrete examples of how you use it, and how it helps you, to us. I am sure that you are a resource beyond price to your sister and nephew in this! Blessings and love to you and your whole family. XO

~Babs said...

You always have beautiful artwork; this no exception.

Isn't that a comforting thought: knowing we are loved by and important to The Shepherd.

Sandy said...

Thankyou, thankyou, I needed to here this today. I battle depression and for the most part do not suffer. But lately have started to worry that I am not living up to potential-so to speak. I know what's up but was feeling like I was being sucked down. Self talk adjustment needed! Thankyou.

~* The Beldame on Peach Street *~ said...

Renee....I don't even know what to say! When last I visited your blog it was to congratulate you on the birth of your new grandchild. In the last few weeks I haven't managed to be at the computer as I normally am, the thing I missed most was visiting with you.

I was crushed last night when I finally managed a visit just before bed because I 'missed Renee'. I spent the rest of the evening crying for you, for your family. And I've spent the whole day trying to figure out what I could say, how I might ease the burden with words or, at the very least, tell you how much I love you. But there are no words, at least not sufficient ones.

I will pray for you Renee, as I always do. I will pray for your loved ones and their fight. And the only thing I've thought to say in all this time is that if they have to fight, and indeed they will, they will have the best teacher, the greatest warrior, on their side the whole time - YOU!

And you are loved, ever so much!


Artistic Accents by Darla said...

Missed you while I was away!
Your self-talk is amazing! Keep it up.
Hope Jacquie and Sheldon are doing ok. Prayers still going up for them and will continue!
Hugs 'n love

KateW said...

The artwork is beautiful and your words are wise. I have never had cancer, but I have had both a life-threatening liver injury (car wreck) and blood clots in my lungs, plus high blood pressure. But I have learned that unless a patient views herself as having a team, as you pointed out, you don't get the support and care you need. As patients, we can't control everything, but feeling in charge of what we can control is very affirming.

Flor Larios Art said...

Thank you Renee. I am so negative and I am always complaining...I needed this...

Marion said...

I needed this today, Renee. Thank you. It's so easy to stumble and fall into negative thinking, that slough of despondency, and you pulled me right out of the mud!! I love you, my friend! Blessings & Healing Prayers coming your way!

Pattee said...

Another beautiful post by one of the most beautiful woman I know....

I love you self talk... I need to do some of those positive affirming self talks... you are showing me how!
Much Love~Pattee

soulbrush said...

see what i mean 'zippy'. very interesting post that can teach a lot of us how to be self positive. thanks. and look out for the postman, my art piece i did for you is on the way. with hugs and lotsa love to you and sheldon and mom and jacquie and in fact everyone.

secret agent woman said...

The way you talk to yoursefl makes all the difference, and I think being gentle is really important. It's something I constant;y work on myself, and I'm having to catch myself and change what I'm saying to myself.

As for my other-talk: Still holding you and your family in my heart. Be well.

Baino said...

I agree with doctors who don't take time with oncology patients. Or any for that matter. They overbook and whizz you in and out . . .I found the surgeons the worst. Be late paying their bill and they seemed to have plenty of time. When my Dad was ill, I was a pest with questions and wanting information. I believe we made him more comfortable by fully understanding what was going on. His surgeon was an asshole but the oncologists and palliative people were a Godsend.

Rikkij said...

Renee- whatever you're doing seems to be working. There is a saying, when all hope is lost, so is all fear. a little fear might be needed in the mix. but just a little to keep us on our toes. ~rick

And Remained said...

I do not know if this will help but I came upon this quote the other day:

"You live in illusion and the appearance of things. There is a reality, but you do not know this. When you understand this, you will see that you are nothing. And, being nothing, you are everything. That is all." - Kalu Rinpoche

Have you read the book "Suffering Is Optional" by Cheri Huber? I think it could be of help. I wish that there is more that I could do for you but I will keep writing and hope that that will be good enough. I send you my love and thanks for this insightful post.

rochambeau said...

Oh YES!! Renee, this is So right on!!!! Self talk is powerful!

Here's another one:
"I am fabulously healthy. Each cell in my body exudes God's brightest light. My soul shines and radiates. I am surrounded and protected by an aura of goodness"!!!


rochambeau said...

I LOVE YOU for all you are. For how you help other. You shining star!

kj said...

me too, renee. plus now we're learning what our neighbors want to do and be: we have a bookstore and mexican restaurant and swapshop and sanctuaries and even a non profit center. what incredible creativity.

email's coming.


Diana Evans said...

Hi Dearest Renee!!! you are always an inspiration and a bright light to many!!! I love that you always make me happy and grateful for life itself...you are very loved!!!


kj said...

amazing, amazing, amazing.

you are in the midst of a giant family crisis, you are probably exhausted, the ground beneath you has shifted, and here you stand, my dearest moon sister, solid and wise.

do you want your posts/blog blog published? just wondering..


yoborobo said...

Renee - I am going to look at Lynne's website. Some peacefulness sounds lovely right now. Maybe we should go to her site together and absorb.:) Much love my friend! xoxo Pam

Sarah said...

ROTFLMAO Renee...yes I need a back rub in the worse way..funny that!!! Whoo hoo...Love ya hon..Sarah

jenjen said...

What a great attitude you have! I am thinking of you and sending you good thoughts and prayers.


Chrisy said...

I'm hoping that these last couple of posts are ones that you've 'prepared earlier' and that you are getting some rest missy! Nagging aside dearest, my love and hugs to you across the miles...

Kate James said...

Your mom's affirmation iss the same as my mum's!

If we got your family together with mine I know we'd laugh at all the same stuff. My lot are as mischievous as yours but I'd forgotten how much I love them for that. Reading your posts has reminded me of that.

I am guessing that you, beautiful, funny, thoughtful Renee - have no idea just how much of a difference you make in people's lives.

one little acorn said...

Thanks Renee once again for the insight to your side of the story. I am grateful for your sharing so openly as it gives me another perspective which I need to be reminded of sometimes. I wish I had known some of these things last year.
I also like the positive affirmations and the positive responses to possibly negative thoughts.
Lots of love to you,

Marie S said...

"I love life; this is my moment."

You are beautiful Renee!
Love and hugs.

susanc said...

I am sending you positive thoughts and prayers.

Susan said...

Renee, I come to you from Marie's blog. I pray that you can have continued strength and keep your ability to stay positive. Hang in there. Susan

Cornerstoregoddess said...

Your insights are powerful. I am sending you healing meditations.

Bobbi said...

Renee, you're such a inspiration to me and I believe to many! You have a wonderful attitude and hope and love is in your words! You're in my prayers, my thoughts and all of my best wishes for you and for your precious and dear family!
Your Art is so awesome and touching and I admire you. I wish there was something more that I could do for you, sweet and dear Renee,. But please know I'm holding you up to our Lord and everyday.
God Bless you and your family Sweetie! I hope that you have a wonderful day!
Hugs and love to you...

Jaliya said...

Renee, your thinking knocks my socks off! :-)

"Fear is the mind killer" -- so simply said, it's impossible not to double-take somehow ...

Low energy ... draw it in ... it's everywhere ... all around you ... in a way, energy = love ...

Love you xoxoxo

Arija said...

Renee, alarm bells ringing in my head, cut out the 'there is nothing in the world I fear' it is a negative statement for your body cells to take in. The bodicells take no cognizance of the 'no', they just hear you fearing the world.
Keep bringing wellness into the present tense, otherwise it will always remain in the future.

Affirm things like:

I am happy and well

I feel better every day

My life is good and I am grateful for living

And above all look into your eyes in the mirror often and affirm that you love yourself just as you are.

I love you just as you are too.

When worry thoughts beset you, they are your own thoughts and you cannot banish them from your brain BUT you can replace the quite consciously by thoughts of gratitude until not only do they recede out of your mind, theyy are totally cast out. When we sing the praises of All Thar Is for every raindrop and moonbeam something within us starts changing, the light within is lit and we start glowing from the inside and the healing process can begin.

You are precious, start recocnizing that!

Daria said...

I keep thinking I gotta read that book ... it has such good stuff.

Bella Sinclair said...

You are the embodiment of Nakagawa, do you know that? Here you are, encouraging your family, encouraging us all, friends and strangers alike. You are a wellspring of positivity and love, and you do wonders for me with the simplest of gestures.

I am so greatly honored to be in one of your posts, my dearest Renee. Thank you. And now, I shall stand and face northward and blow kisses and hugs and positive energy your way. Watch out. It's a great big bundle.


Draffin Bears said...

Dear Renee,

I love it how you are so positive and you are always thinking of others and helping everyone.
We love you Renee and how blessed we are to know you as a friend.
I had a message from our dear friend Bella, which was so great and I see you have too.
Take care and look after your sweet self ~


Sydney said...

Just catching up, so my comments are behind.... This was a wonderful post. Wonderful to write, I'm sure, and of course, helping inspire us all, wherever we are on our paths. Uncanny how each of us can relate, tho our personal details are different. That's the miracle of it... and YOU, m'dear.