Saturday, April 21, 2018

Extraordinary in the ordinary

January 27, 2010 by  
Filed under Patricia's Journey

Alexander asked me “what do you do all day?”  You mean besides waiting for my hair to grow?

It has been 34 days since my last chemo treatment. I met with my oncologist last week; he is quite pleased with my progress.  His recommendation is to repeat scans in mid March and continue on with the daily prescription called Arimidex.  It is designed to prevent blood flow to breast cancer tumors.  As long as scans look good and I continue to make progress on the prescription, then nothing further needs to be done.  In his opinion, it could be awhile before we will need to consider chemo again.  My opinion? Well, by now you must know what my opinion is.  Chemo is a thing in my past.

My body is boss.  Every day, I listen to it and do as it instructs.  It never lies.  The past seven days it has required a lot of sleep.  My immune system is exhausted.  It worked overtime during nine treatments over three months and deserves TLC.  Interesting that we do not include sleeping as productive use of our time, or at least that has been a new way of thinking for me.  Yesterday I took time to thank and love my immune system.  I did this aloud, with words, as if talking with a friend.  Yes, I am the crazy lady in #102 that talks to her body.  I believe the body responds, just as it did all my life to words of dissatisfaction.  It hears words of praise now for the miraculous, magnificent, unfathomable work of art and science that it is.

Bedtime at our home is 9:30 pm and we wake up to the 6:30 am alarm.  I walk eight paces from my bed to the kitchen.  When Alexander goes off to school at 7:10 am, I walk eight paces from the kitchen back to bed for a deep sleep until 10 am.  At that time, I coax my body out of bed and walk to the kitchen for the first round of supplements.  There are two naturopathic tinctures (Mountain Yew, Micocyclin) and one prescription.  A powdered multi vitamin and mineral supplement is mixed with grapefruit juice.  A piece of noni dried fruit, which smells and tastes like shoe leather, slides down a little easier with coffee.  A dose of Ezzeac with Cat’s Claw herbal tea concentrate is next. Awaiting me during the day is a cup of custom chinese tea formulated by Suen, five tablespoons of amino acids, additional vitamin C, magnesium and potassium, a cup of Tulsi Holy Basil tea, plus a cup of fresh carrot/celery/apple juice just for added color.   They are each blessed for the support they offer my body’s systems.  Makes you appreciate your One-A-Day, yes?

A month ago, I began walking 30 minutes a day, performing 100 sit-ups, 50 push-ups and ten minutes of light weight arm exercises.  It was my new year initiative to begin regaining some strength.  OK, the catalyst was when I couldn’t get the lid off the salsa jar and I had to ask one of Alexander’s buddies to do it for me.  Over the past two years, my muscles have turned to mush. If I ask “would you like to see my bicep?”, please say yes. Then look wide-eyed with astonishment at the nearly visible bump on my arm and try not to chuckle.  Every full grown bicep started out this way.  It may take all this year to build up to a reasonable level of stamina, meaning I could easily engage in 6 hours of activity a day.  At this time, it is 3-4 hours a day.  Stories abound of people undergoing chemo and working simultaneously.  It is not my story.  I had to become friends with my limitations.  My typical walking path is to the nearby Punalu’u Ponds Retirement Center.  The road to the Ponds winds through overgrown green vegetation.

on my walk

As you get closer to the Center, you can see palm trees lining the drive as well as the mountains in the background. All the while you are soaking up vitamin D3.  It’s serene and peaceful.  When you pass by the entrance to the retirement center, there are several residents in patio chairs taking pleasure in the fresh air.  Some of them are unable to walk on their own.  We greet each other and I whisper to myself “there except for me go I”.  Every day there are roosters and hens roaming on the road darting off into the brush as I approach.  In Hawaii they roam freely and crow 24 hours a day.  I have four pair of ear plugs.

Native wildlife

My day is simple and somewhat extraordinary within the ordinary.  I spend time with God, prayer and mediation, reading…a lot of reading.  I love a good movie and a nutritious meal…and Oprah.  The food we eat is as close to the earth as possible, meaning minimal processing.  There are steps to complete on my non-profit, friends to connect with and writing.  My son is great company.  I pace myself now.  No longer do I work best under pressure (and doubt that I ever did), rising to meet deadlines with a rush of adrenaline.  I have come to cherish the quiet.  Half of my day is spent alone, excepting of course the ever present Divine.  At least once or twice a month, I visit Suen.  He is a master acupuncturist in Chinatown who was trained in the old country.  He is the real deal.  So worthy is he, I have devoted an entire future blog to him simply titled “Suen”.

This precious time feels like my sacred space to receive the bounty of my experience.  To allow the learnings and awakenings to settle deeply into my psyche, into my bones.  No longer do I feel like I am seeking and searching to find something.  That something being Love.   What I was looking for was right here all along.  I am present to my Self and to my life.  Who are you when you stop trying to get something?  Who are you in that moment?  More than you could ever want and get.

I surrender to this grace that has appeared, these many blessings.  The blessings of personal empowerment, knowing God, trusting the Universe, wanting only for Love, honoring my body temple, nurturing my Self on all levels, a willingness to be open, personal freedom, a desire to be used by the Divine.  There is clarity where there was once confusion.  A clarity from which choices and decisions can be made.  And the clarity can sometimes be not knowing.  It’s a delicious not knowing from which you can see all the possibilities that are available.  And you wait…not with infinite patience. You wait with infinite knowing.  No patience required.

This blog is dedicated to Lisa


3 Responses to “Extraordinary in the ordinary”
  1. Lisa says:

    Thank you my beautiful friend, thank you for sharing the real deal you. And I’m glad to read that you are doing more than waiting for your hair to grow!!! You are a light in my life, an example of truly letting go, getting out of the way and letting God be your compass and guide. All of us are on our own paths in life and you seem to be in a peaceful bliss every day as a result of your intimate relationship with God. Thank you for sharing your blissful life with me. I love you

  2. Christine says:

    I totally see a bicep in that picture! I love this subject of your day and your acceptance of self even with the physical limits, I shared it with a friend who just finished chemo a few months ago. She was understandibly feeling frustrated and tired of the tiredness etc. it was weighing on her. She got comfort from your words and I am so grateful. Love you

    • Patricia says:

      Thank you, my friend, for sharing the benefit of my experience with another sister on this journey. My heart is full that
      she was comforted.

Comment on this post

We would love for you to share your thoughts