Monday, May 18, 2015

Cancer Journal 7: EFT for Releasing Fear

See below for relaxation audios with effective ways to  release fear and anxiety.  

In addition to anger, I've been experiencing a lot of fear.  Enormous, overwhelming fear.  I am sure this is natural under the circumstances.

I've been doing loads of tapping, but I am not sure how much this has worked.  Then, last week, I did a brilliant tapping session with my EFT practitioner.  She is in South Africa now, so we Skyped.

As I said, it was amazing.  We went back into my childhood to tap on some serious issues including the part of myself that is still damaged from many years of abuse (mainly verbal), and my feelings of unworthiness that stem from the difficulties I experiencedThey still affect me now.

She also had me tap on the fear of fear – maybe I'm scared of being scared.  This really helped.

During the tapping, I let go of a lot of stuff.  I felt so much calmer afterwards. Brilliant.


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Cancer Journal 6: What Are Angels?

Angels Answers Cards
Continuing this blog series “Cancer Journals”, named after Audre Lorde's classic The Cancer Journals. Please leave your comments below. Thanks. 

I don't know what angels are. That is to say, I don't know what they represent in my belief system. Being a Buddhist, I do not believe in, or worship, a god or a creator of any kind. For many years, even when I was a Christian, I did not believe in the existence of angels, But now, I know that they are real, and I believe they are a beneficial influence. I have experienced profoundly, deeply peaceful mental states when working with angels.

A few months ago, I realised that by my bedside I had several decks of angel cards, two books about angels and an angel diary. I had to concede that I really do believe in their existence.

I remember, many years ago, watching a film in which my teacher Sangharakshita compared angels to Bodhisattvas. At the time, I thought, “why is he talking about angels? Surely he must know they don't exist!” Wow, how wrong can you be?

The angels have guided me (via the cards) to write and publish this blog series. I don't particularly want to do so, but I am always willing to try things and see where they may lead. This could be a healing process for myself and for others. Hence, this series.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Cancer Journal 5: An Angry Life

Angry Black Woman
Continuing this blog series “Cancer Journals”, named after Audre Lorde's classic The Cancer Journals.   Please leave your comments below.  Thanks.

Anger has always been an issue for me.   And even as a young child, I always believed that anger is connected with cancer – if we don't find ways to process our anger effectively.

As Black people, we cary a lot of anger due to the oppression we face, and we have carried that anger for generations. When we carry negative emotions, they block us from attracting the things we want and deserve.  For more about this, see Achieving Success and Why We Need to Heal.

The negative emotions we carry affect our families as well, and I believe they can not only make us prone to disease, but also block our healing process.  But I have long felt the need to hang onto my anger.  It's as if I think it protects me.  I have thought of anger as a protection, a form of armour.  But really, the opposite is true.

This is why I have decided to record a healing meditation to help me let go of any negative emotions and anything that could be blocking my healing process.  It will not just be for people who have cancer, it will be for anyone who needs physical or emotional healing.

I have carried a lot of intense anger and fear in the past, which stems partly from the abuse I experienced growing up.

I'm a lot less angry than I used to be, but I still experience the full range, from mild irritation to annoyance, to anger, rage and fury.  Even lingering resentment can be destructive, as it alienates us from others, and eats away at us from the inside.

I trust that my new healing meditation will help me, and will be beneficial for you, too.  I shall be posting a link in the next few days.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Cancer Journal 4: Brain Freeze

Brain Freeze
Continuing this blog series “Cancer Journals”, named after Audre Lorde's classic The Cancer Journals.  Please leave your comments below.  Thanks. 
I saw the hospital psychologist on Friday.  She reckons I am still in shock, and I realise now that I am.  I'm very vague a lot of the time, and I'm having trouble making decisions.

Once I was given the cancer diagnosis, I went into brain freeze.  As my flat fills up with packing materials, my head can hold very little apart from clothes, green candles and similar.  I am usually not that into clothes, but I am turning into one of those women who take ages to decide what to wear.

At times like this, it's useful to have friends who tell me what to do, like the one I talked about here.

Friday, May 08, 2015

Cancer Journal 3: Shopping for Green Candles

Green is the colour of life and health.
Continuing this blog series, “Cancer Journals”, named after Audre Lorde's classic The Cancer Journals.  
Please leave your comments below. Thanks.

I've been shopping like crazy.  I recently received a substantial refund on payment protection insurance (PPI).  (Swings and roundabouts.)  So I am spending it.

A spiritual friend whom I trust implicitly suggested that I chant the White Tara mantra.  I am very drawn to Green Tara, who is extremely beautiful - she is the essence of Compassion.  But I have never been particularly interested in White Tara.  I can't get my head around the thought of a Buddha or Boddhisattva being white.  It just makes no sense to me.

However, on his suggestion, I have started chanting the Green Tara mantra.  He says it increases one's life force energy.  I have been doing the Tara puja (ritual) and I chant both the Green Tara and White Tara mantras during it.

I have completely changed my shrine now.  It has been largely pink for several years.  Pink represents unconditional love, and particularly self-love and self-care.

Now, I have changed it to green and white.  Green is the colour of the heart, the colour of unconditional love and compassion.  It also represents growth, health, prosperity and abundance.
So I've been doing lots of shopping for green candles. They are surprisingly hard to find. One shop owner told me someone came in and bought up all the green candles in his shop around St. Patrick's Day.  But that was more than six weeks ago now – come on, man.

So I ended up buying some online.  Big green candles, small green candles, long green candles, short green candles
Yeah, lots of shopping.  Maybe all this shopping is my way of reaffirming life. I seriously updated my wardrobe online the other day.  Yesterday, my doorbell kept ringing. A steady stream of goodies arrived at my door. Brilliant.  Where to put all this stuff? I'm enjoying it, though.

Still, I need to face the fact that I may not be here next year to enjoy this stuff – or even next month.

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Cancer Journal 2: My Diagnosis

Continuing this blog series, “Cancer Journals”, named after Audre Lorde's classic The Cancer Journals.

Below is a letter I sent to my sister, who is a doctor, yesterday.  It is a bit technical, as it gives a few of the details of my diagnosis.

I saw the doctor at the hospital yesterday. I shall be having surgery on ----- and be in hospital for 4-5 days afterwards. The surgeon will be Mr. M----, who was the consultant I was referred to.

There are still a lot of unanswered questions. The cancer is inside a cyst which is either on my right ovary or in the peritoneum next to my uterus and ovary.  They are going to remove everything - my ovaries, womb and cervix, as well as some fat cells and some lymph nodes in the area. The cancer MAY have spread to the lymph nodes, but they are not sure.

They have not found a primary site for the cancer and are not sure whether the cyst is the primary. They expect to know more once the pathologist has examined the tissue.

I think that is pretty much all I know now.... I do find that the more information I get, the more upset I become, so I need to manage this.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Cancer Journals

The Cancer Journals
I have named this blog series “Cancer Journals” after Audre Lorde's classic The Cancer Journals.

It's been three weeks since I found out I had cancer.  My consultant gynaecologist had been trying to phone me and left messages on my voice mail, but as I sometimes don't check it for a couple of days, I didn't realise.  I had emailed his secretary asking if I could have the results of the tests I'd had done.  Then I got the letter telling me of an appointment to see a consultant at the MacMillan Cancer Centre, so I knew.

The first two weeks, I was pretty much in shock. I met with the consultant oncologist, who told me I would have to have a complete hysterectomy.  In between being in shock, I have been going through the first stages of grief:  denial and anger.  I have been angry at pretty much everybody – everybody who doesn't have cancer, everybody who has a partner or children or family around them – so that's pretty much everybody.

Trying to get the support I need, well, that's an ongoing battle.  Or series of battles.  Anyway. I'm strong.  I'm tough, right?  I am a warrior.  I am also vulnerable.  And I certainly was not expecting this.

I don't know how long I can keep up this blog series, because I don't know how I will feel physically or emotionally, or if I will have the courage to say what's really going on for me.  I'll do my best to keep it real, for as long as I can.  But some days, no doubt I will not feel up to posting.  

I trust you will find this series useful and helpful.  Please leave your comments below.