This post is quite personal, folks. We’ve probably all been there at some point in our lives – something isn’t quite right with our health so we get some tests done and are waiting anxiously for the results. Our maybe one result came back that calls for further tests to be done.
I’m going through one of these times again. One test came back worrisome, showing signs of possible cancer in me again. Now I’m on a fast track to get several more tests done to get an overall landscape of my blood work to see what’s going on.
My belief is that I overcame my cancer from 2010, but even though the mainstream healthcare system here in British Columbia is pretty good compared to many countries in the world, it falls terribly short in helping cancer survivors monitor for cancer recurrence.
This post can go in one of two directions – how to deal with this time of anxiety and fear, or how to deal with the desire for good health monitoring outside of the mainstream public healthcare system. For this post, I will focus on the former – I’m not yet ready to tackle the highly controversial and complex topic of seeking non-mainstream healthcare – but I probably will in the future. I am learning so much about that; it’s astonishing what most people do not know and I am finding out.
So here I sit, hoping that I am healthy, but the first test result is not good. How can I deal with the anxiety and fear? Here is what I’m doing, whether right or wrong, it is what it is:
- Allowing the moments of deep fear, and letting myself ‘freak out’. Of the many things that mindfulness has taught me, one is that having emotions is not a bad thing. Being aware of these emotions and realizing they are temporary helps greatly.
- Knowing that whatever happens, I can deal with it (I hope). Goodness, I’ve been through a lot in my life already – my cancer, parents with cancer, divorce, various health issues, stressful jobs, helping others, etc. Each experience has made me stronger, and this is all part of life.
- It’s a stark reminder of the value of life. I’m pretty sure I don’t take life for granted, but somehow I think these scares are messages for me. It stops me in my tracks and makes me take stock of how I’m living my life. I see it is time for a slight adjustment in a few areas.
- And yes, meditation and mindfulness helps me stay grounded. As my followers keenly know, I know that these life skills build resiliency and a joy for life. Every time life is hard, I meditate more, and it gets me through that phase.
I just wrote a post about John Mann’s meaningful music he created during his cancer journey. For those of you facing cancer, it can be highly emotional to watch, but it can also be comforting to feel you are not alone. I find it therapeutic to listen to, but be ready to cry – I’ve received many emails already from people this has touched.
Here is hoping that some people out there reading this may be helped even a little by reading this if you too are in the midst of a possible health scare.