When you have cancer, it brings out opinions in people. “You should listen to your doctor”, “I heard this herb cures cancer, you should take it”, “How can vitamin D prevent cancer, that’s ridiculous”, etc…
When you have cancer, or any other chronic condition, you will get suggestions from all directions from friends and family. This can be simply overwhelming, to the point where you just don’t know what to believe, and who to listen to. But, do you know what? Through all that confusion, it simply means that these people care enough about you to try to help.
Sometimes it could be a doctor’s recommendation that you don’t agree with, or feel the need to investigate her recommendation before you make a decision. In our western society, we are raised to listen to authority, especially our doctors.
I’ve come to realize since my diagnosis in 2010, that I can be an empowered patient. It took me awhile to not only educate myself on what options are out there in the world that are not just surgery and drugs, but to muster up the courage to question, research, form my own opinions and ultimately act on them.
This courage is not easy. Sitting face-to-face with a well-respected oncologist and not taking her advice is difficult, especially when she looks at me disapprovingly for even daring to question her recommendation. I’m not one to cause conflict, but I am one who knows what I want. I take an integrative approach to my health – using both western and so-called ‘alternative’ or complementary methods. I don’t dismiss either, and I think all methods should be considered and the best way chosen for a particular condition.
Do you ever question when your doctor grabs a prescription form rather than discusses what could be the root of your ailment? If you don’t, you should, especially if you have a chronic situation. Our bodies have the capacity to self-heal, and sometimes we should not readily accept that it’s normal to have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, chronic digestion problems, etc. Most western doctors don’t have the time, or interest, to talk to you about holistic health care. I don’t blame them, but you can take control of your own research and decisions.
If you are someone who has that little voice in your head when you have a health condition and really don’t like to take drugs or have surgery, then please listen to that little voice and take the time to explore, see different doctors, and talk to lots of people about alternatives. If you find something that you believe is right for you, have the courage to stand your ground despite what others think.
Standing your ground applies to anything in your life, not just what you choose for your own healthcare. Honour yourself. Honour what you believe is right for you. Listen to what others say but still do what is right for yourself.
Stand your ground, respectfully.
I recently wrote this post: ‘Can you let go of someone’s bad decision?’. It’s about letting go of someone else’s decisions, but in the context of the above post, turn it around 180 degrees… can you help others let go of your decisions? Help others realize they need to respect your decisions and not judge?