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Here’s the book synopsis:
It started with the discovery of a little bump on the side of my neck at a birthday luncheon. It turned into two years of back-to-back cancers, the harshest chemo, a stem cell transplant, a mastectomy and reconstruction. In this book, I share the emotional rollercoaster that I went through first with the shock of my diagnosis and then with reconciling the necessary chemical cocktail with my organic, all natural belief system; I share it all in my typical casual style as if we were having coffee. The second part of the book I aim to help cancer patients through the difficult time just after diagnosis and through treatment by organizing all that I learned into seven sections, from food and health information to life altering lessons, to trippy spiritual experiences. This book will support the newly diagnosed cancer patient in finding strength and optimism through the hardest time of their life.
Here’s a snippet:
“The shock. The disbelief. I was a Holistic Health Coach! I was drinking green smoothies. I was doing yoga and seasonal detox cleanses. How could I, of all people, get cancer? This shook me to my core. And perhaps the weirdest part was that I felt perfectly healthy. The doctors kept asking if I had felt any fatigue. Nope. Night sweats? I felt fine! It was so hard to believe this diagnosis was true. I kept waiting for someone to call and say there had been a mistake. How could this terrible thing be happening in my body when I felt completely normal?
I felt like I had to figure out this un-figure-out-able thing. It was very tempting to go down the self-blame path and think that I had done something wrong. I knew there was no cheese down that path but I just couldn’t help thinking there must have been more healthy living I could have done. More yoga? More meditation? Should I have trained for a marathon? What had I not been doing?
I have spent a lot of time thinking about this because I was so sure of myself and my healthy lifestyle. It was a betrayal of the highest order for me to get cancer when I had been doing everything the books said to do. And yet, despite all my smoothies, veggies and yoga, this cancer had invaded and managed to spread. So I searched for the answer. What was I missing? I was healthy physically, but was I healthy emotionally, mentally, spiritually? Was I happy, joyful, brazenly loving life? I had to be honest with myself. I was happy most of the time. But blissfully, joyful and brazenly loving life? Not so much.
I’m a perfectionist by nature and I began to realize that my high standards had gotten in the way of true happiness and peace of mind. I had been hard on my husband, hard on my kids and most of all, hard on myself. I stressed myself out trying to be the perfect wife, the perfect mother, the perfect business person. I was not always easy to be around. I wanted to be happy and love life. I was just so busy trying to do everything perfectly that I wasn’t fully enjoying the life I had.
I also realized that along with taking care of everyone else, for the most part, I had put my own needs on the back burner. This is astonishingly common among the women I know. We are career women, mothers, wives, working from the minute we wake up to the minute we drop exhausted on the bed at night, having taken care of everyone but ourselves. “Who has time for that?” I hear my friends say.
Making my self-care a priority had never been party of my mindset. My mother put us kids first; she sacrificed for us. She ate the fried egg with the broken yolk that no one else wanted. I adore my mother and she did not teach me to put my needs above those of my family. The idea that we women should make sure our needs are met, that our energy cup is full in order to have some to share, the idea to put our oxygen masks on first before helping others, was not part of my upbringing. Asking for help, or arranging things so I had time for self-care, was not what I was used to.
So with this diagnosis, since I really felt like I knew what I was doing on the nutrition side of things, what I decided to do was dive into this other side of healthy living: Self-care, the happiness factor and stress reduction practices. The setting free of my spirit.”