Chapter 9

Support, Advice, & The Search for the right ? ??

Having made the decision, to look into alternative choices, we went on ‘the ultimate search’. Bewildered and dazed, the phone ringing off the hook, articles from newspapers and magazines being dropped off to our house, we were living in grand central, the nucleus of the beehive. We were receiving a shower of support and advice from the eccentric to the viable from friends as well as from people who had just somehow heard about my condition. Word of the challenge we were facing with cancer had spread rapidly and literally within days we had options galore to follow up on.

Prayers were being said for me through out different churches and different religions. I remember being told that prayers were being said for me around the world. I was pleased and somewhat surprised, in church we had always said prayers for certain individuals, I had thought nothing much of it, now they were being said for me, perhaps this cancer thing was a bit more serious than I was giving it credit for. My parents, having a better understanding of, and appreciation for, took solace in all the support.

In the beginning, I thought I could do it all on my own. I could stay strong, tell everyone what to do, they could do it, but it wasn’t as though I needed them. My convictions were slowly losing momentum. Looking back on it, it is hard to fathom the depth of caring one person can receive. I didn’t really appreciate it at the time, but I do now. I thought I was doing it on my own; I had no idea that I was being carried. It would take getting past that fear of regressing, of becoming dependent again, to be able to appreciate and to not only acknowledge but to accept support from others, especially so large a group of people, who genuinely seemed to care about me and what I was going through.

The advice, the prayers, the support, kept coming, without it we would never have found the different directions that we took. I delegated the entire initial screening to my parents, they sifted through all the well-meant advice, sure cures, and possible leads. They then discussed it with my fiancée, at the time, and then whatever they all could agree on, was brought to me for final discussions. I didn’t want to give my energy to anything until it was thoroughly investigated by those I could trust. To this day I look at all options before deciding on any thing, from ‘ what is the best dark chocolate available?’ ‘Is the more expensive stuff worth the money?’ to less important stuff like what to do with my future.

Some advice we kept, some we put aside, all we totally appreciated. We were learning through all this, about the alternative treatments, those treatments that were not necessarily proven. Investigating what was thought to be pure Quackery and what could be possible viable. Things like, nutrition, vitamins, herbs, acupuncture, acupressure, traditional Chinese medicine, visualisation, meditation, stress reduction techniques. This, I believe, is where non-traditional medicine gets most of its clients, the desperate and terminal. It is a wonder that these non-traditional methods can be useful at all, considering the poor health we have deteriorated to by the time we choose to look in their direction.