WTF? I have cancer?


Three words you never want to hear your doctor say: biopsy, oncologist, lymphoma. I have had these impossible words spoken to me many times over the past 6 weeks as the doctors have tried to figure out what was causing my lymph nodes to be enlarged. Time went really fast and at the same time seemed to take forever. Yesterday we finally got the diagnosis: Low-Grade Lymphoma.

It’s very surreal mainly because I feel perfectly absolutely normal–my usual healthy self. How could this body that has perfect numbers for everything else have cancer? Low inflammation, healthy organs, perfect blood levels (except for that pesky lymphocyte number), besides I have no symptoms. No fever, no night sweats, no fatigue. I feel 100% normal. But apparently I have cancer. 

I have spent the past few days digesting this information. There was the normal shock and tears. I have moved on to being productive: killing it. Since I already eat loads of the cancer fighting veggies, I am focusing on taking out of my diet (as in zero) the foods that cancer likes: sugar in any form, alcohol, processed grains, and red meat. Basically, I want to create a very inhospitable environment for the cancer. I am also looking at what areas of my life could be more balanced since I know negative energy can feed cancer as well. I’ve decided my stress level may be a factor there.

It’s not that I’m a control freak (people may disagree) but I do like things a certain way. My way. 😉 I have reasons for this and they’re obviously because my way is the best way. So I like things done promptly and done well. Doesn’t everyone? I mean, who can argue with that? Well, as it turns out a few people whom I love and adore and who live with me, do argue with that quite it bit. This is an area I’m working on reducing conflict and reducing the resulting stress involved with that conflict. Whether it’s me lowering my high standards or them stepping up a bit more, we’ll see. As long as it’s conflict free, it will be beneficial.

I’m also putting as a (now serious) priority all of the practices that I know help reduce stress–the same ones that I recommend to my clients all the time like meditating, yoga and exercise. Lately, for the past year maybe, I’ve been doing these wonderful health benefiting practices only occasionally. Why? Because I’m busy, of course. Very busy actually. I have a growing business that I love, two very active teenagers, and a husband who works hard himself and who loves my healthy home cooked meals. It’s all a constant juggle and what I’ve back-burnered lately is the exercise, yoga and meditation.

This creates a terrible Catch-22 because the more busy and stressed out I am, the more likely I am to drop out the very thing that could help me deal with the stress–can you relate? Dropping out the exercise, meditation and yoga gives me none of their health benefits and only ends up creating even more stress. So off the vicious circle for me. I’m meditating daily, exercising daily and practicing yoga several times a week. Other things may have to give a little but it’s definitely worth it.

What type of Lymphoma I have and what stage it is I will find out on Monday. What the treatment will be will likely be figured out over the coming weeks. I’m encouraged by my Google searches though, finding sometimes there is a “wait and see” approach when a person is feeling fine, meaning no treatment at all. Crossing fingers for that! I’ll know more on Monday. For now, it’s just all about starving the cancer and living stress free.


 Laren Watson
Holistic Health Coach

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Laren - August 11, 2013

Thank you for these suggestions. I follow Kris Carr and immediately got out her book on Friday to reread it :-). I’m aware of The China Study and Forks Over Knives–thank you for reminding me of them, I will dive in. You will see from my other blog posts that I am already dairy and gluten free, and eat a ton of vegetables. I am not ready to go completely vegan but as I said, have cut out red meat. Thank you again for your comment, suggestions and support!

Clarissa - August 11, 2013

Hi Laren
I am a good friend of Robin Lanahan’s and she just sent me this link to your blog. I received the diagnosis that I had a non hodgkins’s lymphoma this time last year and am now done with my treatment. There are a variety of lymphoma’s and treatment. I would be happy to talk with you about my experience…one thing for sure, I have been walking my way through cancer and I think it has helped me immensely. I wish the best for you on this journey.

    Laren - August 11, 2013

    Thanks Clarissa,
    I will know more tomorrow and will definitely be in touch when I know what I’m dealing with. I would love to hear about your experience. I hope you are feeling great after your treatment.

Mark Verrillo - August 13, 2013

Laren sorry you have this added challenge to your busy life but you have the power to burn through it. Your article is beautifully written and I am in your corner!

Suze - August 13, 2013

Laren, thinking of you. If I can offer any kine of support, I will.

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