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Listen to your Heart

A true story by Alison Moncrieff

It was June, 2014, life was very ordinary. My children, two daughters, aged 7 and 5 had a random school holiday week and we were about to go to England to visit my Mother. My Dutch husband was back in the Netherlands where we lived and my stepdaughter Emma, 18 was busy with her first year at Amsterdam University.

However, my ordinary life had just got a little bit extraordinary. In the week before the holiday, I was sitting on my bed with the girls, laughing about something when Jennifer accidently hit me in the chest with her elbow. Instinctively putting my hand over where she had hit me, I discovered something I had not noticed before. A lump, a very small bit clearly malleable lump. I dismissed it immediately and went on with our packing for the trip making a mental note to keep a check on it. I checked it a lot in the following few days, I was hoping it would just magically disappear. I thought maybe it was just hormonal, something to do with my cycle. I told myself it was nothing to worry about.

I specifically did not mention it to my husband. I married a widower, his first wife, Emma’s mother, died at the age of 39 from Breast Cancer. Telling him was not an option. Not until I knew it was nothing sinister. Then I would tell him.

During the week in England, my instincts started to kick in. I realised I had to do something, even my Mother had noticed that I was touching my breast a lot. So I was clearly worried. I rang the GP to make an appointment only to find they were closed for the holidays. Immediately on my return from the UK to my home in The Netherlands, I rang the doctor. I explained in my best Dutch that I had found a lump. They gave me an appointment that afternoon. The trainee doctor gave me an examination, She felt the lump, she did not seem concerned but decided to refer me for a biopsy, just to be sure.

The next day the hospital rang and I agreed to have the biopsy done the following Monday. Still keeping the whole thing secret from anyone I arrived at the hospital for the mammogram and biopsy. After the mammogram the radiographer walked in to the room. He announced that he had looked at the mammogram and it was clear, nothing to worry about. I felt relieved. Then he asked about the lump and I explained where it was. The ultrasound machine moved easily over the lump and found it quickly. Not very big, it measured 2cm, but big enough to need a fine needle biopsy just to check there was nothing to worry about. The results would be available within two days. I went home feeling much better. Nothing on the mammogram, only a small lump. Two days later there were still no results at the GPs office. Three days later and the GP called, I was in the bedroom, she had seen the mammogram and she said I had nothing to worry about. She was 99% certain it was nothing. The relief came over me like a warm blanket and I sunk onto the bed in tears. I realised I could now tell my husband that evening about the last few days and have good news to end it with.

That evening, my husband was out with friends so I didn’t get a chance to tell him my good news, which great because the next day everything changed.

Lucy was sick the next day and I had to take her via the GP to hospital for a check. On the way back from the hospital the GP called. They had the pathology results from my biopsy. They told me that they needed to talk to me, that they had made an appointment for me at 1pm that day and that it would be a really good idea to bring someone along with me. Within 24 hours my relief at knowing all was well had turned into fear. They had clearly found something, it was time to come clean to my husband.

At this point I was freaking out somewhat so I simply called my husband at work and luckily he answered the phone:
“You need to come home”
“I can’t tell you over the phone”
“at least tell me what it is related to.”
“I can’t, please come home and I will tell you everything then.”
“I’m on my way.”

At 12pm I sat at the kitchen table opposite my husband and made his world fall apart for the second time in his life. His whole body sank and he started to shake. He felt that history was repeating itself. He couldn’t believe that it was possible that I also had breast cancer. We didn’t have enough information at this point so at 1pm we were in the GP’s office being told that the results of the pathology were inconclusive. There were some abnormal cells so more tests were required.

Monday afternoon at the hospital, sitting in front of the surgeon, he said we need to do more tests, he planned a core needle biopsy and an MRI but he then added that he was 90% sure that it was breast cancer.

Just hearing those words was enough to make me fall apart. Not emotionally, there were no tears immediately but just a massive dose of fear, lots of questions ran around my head, what is going to happen next, will I survive, what do I do about the children? I tried to attach myself to the 10%. If he is 90% sure then there is a 10% chance that he may be wrong. That is what got me through the next few days.

MRI and biopsy over, one week later we were sitting once again in the surgeon’s office. Invasive ductal carcinoma was what he said. I didn’t know what that meant so I just said, “so it is cancer then…” Actually it was a rather large cancer, much bigger than the 2cm lump we found. The MRI showed a large spider like mass towards the back of the breast, attached to the chest wall, which is why it wasn’t visible on the mamogram, 5cm of tumour with other smaller lumps in other locations in the breast. An HER2 tumour plus another tumour and a few other lumps in the breast that would need to be investigated further. He then outlined that his recommendations would be lymph node extraction, a course of chemotherapy followed by a full amputation (mastectomy) and radiation. The chemotherapy was to shrink the tumour to make it operable. A few lymph nodes would need to be removed as soon as possible to see how far it had spread. I also needed to have a PET scan to see whether the cancer had spread to any other parts of my body.

Despite the news I was trying desperately to process I suddenly found myself explaining that this was terrible timing because I was due to start my summer holiday at the end of the week. I had planned to be away for 5 weeks and I didn’t want to cancel. I think I was in denial!

Looking back, I think the surgeon was surprised by my reaction. He explained that holidays were also important and that he could work round my dates. He also suggested that he did the lymph node extraction on Friday, which would be the day before I left for my holiday.

At this point I surprised myself. Somehow, somewhere from deep inside a voice came up and I said “No.” The surgeon did not press me further on the lymph nodes.

In the car, the tears came as the enormity of what was happening finally sunk in. I had Breast Cancer. I was 46 years old and my youngest child was 5. My emotions ran all over the place, from the possibility of dying to the enormity of the treatment plan, to the violation of the surgery that I was to have in the coming months. So much to take in, so much to process, life as we knew it was falling down around us and I knew Paul was suffering as much as I was. He had already been here once, how on earth could this be happening again.

Once home I tried to come to terms with everything, called my Mum and my brother to tell them my news and tried to be as normal as possible for the children. We told the children the next day.

There was one thing that I was adamant about. I kept saying over and over again to my husband that I did not want to have chemotherapy. Then there was a further complication. I received a call from my GP saying she was coming over that evening for a chat. When she arrived she explained that she had talked to both the Oncologist and the Surgeon and that both of them were keen for me to start treatment rather than go on holiday. Apparently the surgeon did not want to say this to me the day before because he was worried I was going to walk away from any treatment so he was being gentle with me. I felt totally lost, I didn’t know what to do, the medical team wanted me to cancel my holiday, my husband wanted me to cancel my holiday so I started thinking that maybe it was for the best and I should cancel my holiday.

I realised I needed some help, a sign, anything that might help me know for sure what to do. The problem was, everyone who was near or dear to me agreed with the doctors so I looked elsewhere. This may sound a bit strange but I asked the universe for help, I just put it out there, ‘help me’ I said, ‘I want to know what the best decision is for me.’ The next evening I was putting my daughter Jennifer to bed. She asked me about the cancer.
“Are you going to die?” she asked
“I don’t know, but I don’t think so.” I answered
“But what if you do?” she said
“Well, then it will be my time to die.”
We hugged and I turned out the light and moved towards the door.
“Mummy,” Jennifer said, “ I read a book in the school library about a woman who had breast cancer and she cured it in 5 weeks.”
I stood there looking at her in astonishment. I didn’t know what to say, my mind was racing, I was a library Mum, there was no book in her school library about breast cancer, how on earth could she come out with a statement like that?
“Thank you Jennifer,” I said, “Thank you for sharing such an inspiring story. Goodnight”
As I left her room I realised I had my sign, I would go on holiday and I would somehow work out exactly what my next steps should be.

I told my husband my decision and he was devastated. He didn’t understand why I would not just do what the doctors recommended. But I needed time. I didn’t want to have chemotherapy, Chemotherapy was in my opinion totally unspeakable, it did more damage that it helped. It was no cure. I was convinced I could find something else, I just needed some time to research and ask my community for help, someone had to know something that would work for me. I also made a decision to focus inwards, to try and connect with myself and what I needed at this difficult time. I knew what everyone else wanted for me, but what did I want? Strangely enough that was not easy to answer except for the mantra in my head that I was not having chemo.

I left as planned that weekend with my two younger daughters and after picking up my mother in London, arrived in Bermuda to stay with my brother and his girlfriend. The weather was beautiful, the beaches fabulous and the girls were very happy to be back on the island paradise. It was great that my mother was with me because she could help with the girls, which allowed me time to focus on research and meditation. I was also having coaching sessions over skype with an amazing coach, Ruth, who agreed to coach me just before the diagnosis. Ruth had had some experience with Journey work and she suggested this for me to help with releasing any emotional traumas that I may be holding on to in my body. I had been reading about the link between emotions and illness and I wanted to try anything that may help my body to get through this. I had cancer, the hospital wanted to cut out the tumour and give me drugs to get rid of the symptoms but it could not provide me with a cure. My immune system had still failed, if I didn’t work out how to switch on my body’s natural healing system, it would only be a matter of time before the cancer returned.

Having recently trained as a coach, I had a coaching community that I immediately reached out to and asked about natural treatments for cancer. My entire focus was how I could avoid the chemotherapy. A few ideas came back, diet was a strong one, but this did not resonate with me since I was already a vegetarian and eating a lot of green superfoods. I hadn’t always had a good diet but in the last two years I had been tuning in more to the needs of my body through my coach training and I simply started to listen. My body was craving vegetables, juices, quinoa and anything that was freshly grown so I had simply included more of these items in my diet.

Other cancer cures that I found included cannabis oil, apricot kernels, GcMaf, raw food, excluding dairy food, tooth bacteria and various other cures that had worked on at least one person. I found plenty of articles about the dangers of chemotherapy which I duly forwarded to my husband to defend my position that I did not want to have that poison in my body. But as I moved forward with my research I realised two very important things, firstly I realised that the internet was a very dangerous place, anything you wanted to prove or defend could be found on the internet. The second thing was that for every person who had cured their cancer with something other than conventional medicine, there were a handful of dead people. This last point was brought home to me when I went out to meet one of my Bermudian friends Clare, for lunch. She had also invited a friend of hers, Debbie to the lunch. Debbie had had breast cancer three times and she was convinced that she had now beaten it. It was actually really great to meet someone who had been through the treatment and I told her that I was not going to have chemotherapy. I asked her whether she knew of anyone who had tried to treat their cancer in a natural way and Debbie explained of a friend of hers who like me was looking for an alternate way of treatment. I asked her what happened and Debbie explained that she spent a lot of time looking around for the right natural medicine but never really found it and she died two years after diagnosis.

My research continued but I was getting very frustrated by the fact that I was not able to get what I would call and ‘aha’ moment when every inch of my body would know instantly that I had found the right treatment plan. I was looking for a spark of excitement that would let me know I was on the right track. I was also busy meditating and asking the universe for help and I was also having some deep coaching sessions from my fabulous coach, Ruth. The Journey work was incredible. One session in particular was transformational for me. It was about love and how a child receives love. I have a loving family but they were not very demonstrative emotionally. In this coaching session I realised I wanted to really feel the love of my family, but because they were not so emotionally led, I decided to take what I needed instead. So after the coaching I went into the kitchen and told my Mum I needed a hug and without waiting for a response, I hugged her. I then went to my brother and did the same. It felt a little unusual but I decided to continue. A little while later I repeated the exercise and hugged them again and I continued with this over the next day or two. Then on the next day I must have looked a bit down because my Mum came over and said, you look like you need a hug and she leaned in and hugged me. This was such a profound moment. She had never done that to me as an adult before and it felt so amazing. That evening I cried and cried whilst repeating my Mother loves me, my Mother loves me, over and over again. My logical brain had always known this to be true but my emotional side had not been sure until that moment. It was an incredible feeling and a big learning for me, that sometimes when you need something from someone you just have to ask for it.

I spent the holiday doing a lot of work and soul searching but the weeks were coming to and end, my husband had joined me and we left Bermuda to spend a week in the US before travelling home. My husband had been very efficient and had set up lots of appointments for me to see the oncologist and the surgeon in the week after the holiday but I still did not have a clear answer for myself as to what I needed to do. I was lost, I had been sure that there would have been some sort of sign from the universe, some feeling of excitement whilst researching that would lead me to believe I had found the right way forward but here was nothing. I began to doubt myself. I felt the pressure mounting, I would soon have to make a decision.

Once at home the hospital visits started. First the oncologist explained the chemotherapy regime, then the surgeon explained they were going to put in a port for the chemo, since there would be so many chemo treatments. Then I went to another hospital for a PET scan, to see whether there was cancer in my bones, liver or ovaries. I still said every day to my husband that chemo was not an option.

Sitting in the Oncology office two hours after my PET scan was, I discovered later, one of the scariest days for my husband. It was after a full body scan that he had discovered that his first wife’s cancer was terminal since it had been found in her bones. It was on his mind that he would hear the same thing with me. The Oncologist opened the meeting with the words, “well the good news is that the cancer has not spread to the bones, liver or ovaries” and I saw my husband’s body physically relax as if he had been holding on to lots of tension that he suddenly let go. The news from the scan was good, finally something was positive.

In between the hospital visits, I decided, more in desperation than anything to go and see a psychologist. One who I had worked with before when I was faced with a challenging life situation. It is probably worth mentioning that I had spent most of my life living from my head, that is, in a logical thinking left brained kind of way. I went from school to university to read mathematics and then further to a career in finance and strategy. When I left the corporate world and embarked on my coach training, I would describe myself as numb from the neck downwards. If someone had asked me how I felt or what I needed I would look at them and wonder why they were asking such a dumb question. With the coach training I made huge leaps forward in understanding so much more about myself. I read all the books by Martha Beck and tried many of the exercises that she recommended to connect with your inner knowing. I am convinced that had I got sick two years earlier, the whole process would have been very different.

So here I was, talking to Psychologist, Zelda about the fact that I did not want to have chemo and I was wondering whether she had any alternative ideas. I was basically looking for her help to give me a great reason not to do the chemo. What happened next was very surprising.

Zelda asked me to close my eyes and imagine what it would be like to have chemo, to be sitting in the chair and receiving the medicine. She asked me to sink right in to my body and feel it. So I took my time and few deep breaths later I was sinking into the chemo experience. OH MY GOD, big shock, my body was lighting up like I was about to go to a fabulous birthday party. It was so exciting, delightful and brilliant all at the same time and I was so embarrassed I almost didn’t say anything but in the end I told her everything and she looked at me quite seriously and said,
“you have your answer.”

Then my brain took over and it flipped out, my thinking was along the lines of ‘how can this be possible? No-one chooses chemotherapy, don’t you know how bad those chemicals are, you have no right to listen to your heart, how do you know it is right anyway………
But she was right, I knew now. I had my answer. I knew that sometimes, even in very difficult decision making situations that the head and the heart can be in totally opposite places. I also knew now that chemotherapy was the right way forward for me even if my head didn’t like it. I also knew now that I was starting to understand how to listen to my body in a way that I had never understood before. It was the start of something very special that would help lead me through my treatment plan one step at a time so that I could make decisions with the confidence that I really knew what to do to get well again.

A few days later I was sitting in the chemotherapy ward of the local hospital and knew it was the right place to be. It still did not make any logical sense to me at this point but I was clear that this was the right next step. It wasn’t pleasant. In fact I would go so far as to say that it sucked but I took the medications to stop the sickness and I went home to bed. It wasn’t too bad the first time.

Between the first and the second chemo I had a port fitted in my chest to allow my body to be hooked up to an IV without having to have a needle in the vein each time It was very clever and was hidden under the skin so it was not visible. It hurt like hell when they connected the chemo drip to it two days after the operation but as I sat there I watched two nurses trying to get a large needle into the vein of an older man and I started to see the benefit. The second chemo was just doable, but it left me much sicker than the first one and I started to look like a cancer patient.

I needed another biopsy because they had found a number of additional lumps on the original MRI scan and needed to check whether they were malignant or benign. I went in for the procedure and the radiologist was very thorough. He looked at the MRI a number of times and then tried very hard to find the lump to biopsy. He couldn’t find it. He really looked but he couldn’t find it. They explained it away as an anomaly on the MRI. To me it was something much more significant. To me it was a sign that my body was healing. There was a lump, clearly visible on the MRI that was now not there, because it had gone. It felt to me that I was doing something right and I needed to keep doing it. So alongside the chemo, I was still busy with a clean and green diet and coaching sessions, including more journey work. I also started doing visualisations when I had the chemo so I could see the medicine, which was red, focusing only on the tumour and killing only the bad cells, not the good cells. Now I needed to make sure that I was supporting my body through this gruelling regime, which was only going to get worse, so I went back to my research.

In the next week, my hair started to fall out. In small clumps at first, then in larger clumps. I remember going to a birthday party to pick up my youngest daughter and running into two other Mum’s there who were friends of mine.
“look!” I said as I grasped my hair and pulled and they watched in horror as a huge clump of it came out in my hand. It felt really horrible and I was in need of some morale support from other women who would understand that it is really crap to start losing your hair. However, since it was an inevitability, I decided to hold a cancer hair shaving coffee morning with a few of my friends so that instead of letting it fall out, I could take control and shave it off.

It was a really good decision. My friends were there, one of them, who used to be a nurse, volunteered to do the shaving. A deep breath and we started. I sat in front of a mirror so that I could see the process and little by little my brown, shoulder length hair, or what was left of it, ended up on the floor. We then had some fun with a whole bunch of hats that a friend of mine had lent me after her own cancer experience and I was relieved that it was over. I thought I would cry, if not during, then after, but it didn’t happen. Again, what happened was surprising, to me at least. After my friends left, I decided to walk into town to get some shopping. I put on a hat and walked round the corner and then I did something surprising. I took my hat off and kept on walking. The day was a bright September day and it was not cold so I kept on walking and then I started smiling. ‘This is me’ I thought, ‘ let everyone else think what they like, I’m happy to be me.’ Wow. This was one hell of a breakthrough. For possibly the first time in my life I decided not to be self conscious about how I looked but just embrace who I am. It felt really liberating. I walked around that town smiling at everyone and enjoying the surprising looks on their faces when they saw my baldness.

As the chemo treatment continued and I felt more tired I looked for ways to support my body. My diet was still very healthy, although I was eating less simply because I had no appetite. Again I was met by a variety of information and well meaning advice so again I tried to follow my instincts and ask my body what it needed. I was sitting quietly one evening searching the internet and I found an article about a cancer patient who was helped by a British GP who specialised in using natural supplements to support cancer patients. There was a really small link in the article to a webpage and I read the page and I felt that excitement again, this was something I needed to investigate further. I emailed the doctor the very next day and she rang me immediately. Our first appointment was really interesting and she explained her approach and the scientific base for all the supplements she prescribes. I started taking them immediately to boost my immune system and it felt like I was taking another step forward to wellness.

During my time in Bermuda I had sent out an email to all my fellow trainee coaches to ask them for anything they thought might help me. I now received an email from one such friend with a link to a radio interview by a lady called Donna Eden, apparently this lady claimed that when she worked with her energetic therapy with chemotherapy patients, they didn’t have any side effects. I was very sceptical but also curious, my body felt excited about this but I didn’t know why. I really thought this was totally unbelievable and totally impossible. But I listened to the interview and I was curious enough to order her book which was about something she called Eden Energy Medicine. It felt like I had found the last piece of the puzzle to complete my healing process. I read the book and immediately started doing what she calls her Daily Energy Routine. It is a 5 minute routine that helps to balance the body’s energies which supports the body’s own ability to heal. I only did it when no-one was looking because I was sure that if anyone saw me do it they would think I was quite mad. In the first few days I felt much worse but then after a week I started to feel a bit less tired. Instinctively I knew this was right for me but I had no idea why and no idea how it could possibly work. I was starting to doubt my own sanity, I was so far away from my old logical corporate world where the analysis supported the result. Working on gut feeling or instinct was not something I was used to but I had nothing to lose at this stage and everything to gain.

As my health deteriorated due to the chemo, I heard from one of the mother’s at school that they had done a food rota for me. Each evening, Monday to Friday, someone would come to the house and drop off a tasty meal for my family. I was totally knocked over by this amazing act of community support. I was so grateful to each and every person who cooked for me each day and ensured that I could get my rest and not have to worry about dinner. It was really humbling and also for me in the beginning very hard to accept. I had always stood on my own two feet, always independent and here I was being looked after by a group of really inspirational people. It was here I learned to accept help, to appreciate that people want to help and all I needed to do was open up and accept it.

By the time the chemo regimen moved into the 5th month I was really unwell. My blood counts were so low I had to have a blood transfusion just before Christmas. One day in the chemo ward I started having chest pains and the doctor decided to take me for an x-ray. Because I was an inpatient I had to wait for a wheelchair. So there I was, being pushed in a wheelchair, whilst I held the IV drip unit in front of me and since we had to go round a lot of different corridors I started to feel like I was on a race track, steering the wheelchair with the IV drip in front of me. In fact it started to feel quite funny and all of a sudden I started to giggle, then I started to laugh, really hard. The guy pushing the wheelchair must have thought I was really mad but I just laughed. It was then I realised the fear had gone. There was nothing more I needed to fear. I was sure at this point that I was going to be OK.

In January of 2015, my husband and I were sitting in front of the surgeon once more whilst he looked at the results of the latest MRI scan. This was the planning meeting for the surgery. We were waiting to hear the details of the mastectomy.
“how are you feeling?” asked the surgeon,
“not great, “ I said, “after 5 months of chemo.”
“well it’s working,” replied the surgeon, “the tumour is gone.”
He then swung his PC display round towards us and showed us the screen. On it were two pictures, the original MRI which showed the spider like black mass inside my breast and the second more recent MRI which showed just the grey image of a breast.

I was stunned. I had expected something positive but this was beyond anything that I had hoped for. I immediately asked whether we could skip surgery altogether but he insisted that this would not be a great idea. In fact despite the good news I was offered two options. Either a mastectomy or the removal of a small piece of tissue from the original sight of the tumour (lumpectomy) followed by radiation. He also wanted to remove one of my lymph nodes. This was the first time I had heard the word radiation and my immediate reaction was to feel really depressed about the fact that after all the chemo, which was ongoing, I now had to add radiation. I immediately said that I didn’t want my lymph node removed, I didn’t see the point since the tumour had gone. I felt that if the tumour was gone in the breast then it must be gone in the lymph nodes too. He maintained his recommendation and we agreed to meet once more before surgery.

It was time to really dig deep and ask my body what it needed. I was of course buoyed by the fact that the scan had clearly shown that the tumour had disappeared and the oncologist had looked amazed when she saw me in the hospital corridor that day. She ran up to me and asked me if I had seen the scan and said it was an amazing result. I had a number of options, I could follow one of the recommendations of my surgeon or I could decide not to have any surgery at all. It was my decision and one I really needed to be sure about. I spent some time meditating on it and also did a journey process with my coach Ruth. The journey process allowed me to ask my body what it really wanted and the answer came back very clearly. The lumpectomy was ok, the lymph node extraction was not and the radiation was unnecessary.

I went back to the surgeon and told him that I would go ahead with the lumpectomy, no lymph node extraction. At this point I decided to keep the radiation out of the discussion, it would only take place after surgery anyway. The surgeon was not happy about the decision. He asked my GP to visit me for a chat because he was not sure I was making the right choice. She tried very hard to persuade me and said that if I insisted on not having the lymph node extracted then I would have to have radiation on my armpit area as well as my breast area. At this point I just wanted to get agreement on the surgery so I said yes.

Surgery went well, the surgeon did a great job and the post operative result came back even more surprising in that the tissue he removed was not even scar tissue but was normal tissue. To me that meant only one very important thing, my body had healed itself, it hadn’t been the result of the chemo which would have left scar tissue. Somewhere among the many emotional, spiritual and physical approaches I was using was something that had turned on my body’s ability to heal. It may have been the combination of all of it but either way it really felt like following my heart had really been the right approach. But I wasn’t quite finished yet.

After surgery I was sent to another hospital to have an intake for radiation. I spoke to the radiographer and she gave me the schedule for the next 6 weeks. It was 5 days a week starting on the Thursday of that week. I went home and I had a really uncomfortable feeling about the whole thing. I was unsure but I was also nervous about saying no. This was part of the treatment protocol that many patients face. There was a lot of scientific evidence that radiation prevents recurrence. I again needed to look inwards for guidance and support. On the Thursday I had my first radiation session and it hurt, a lot. My body was not happy, I was getting all sorts of strange sensations. I asked the technicians in the radiation room whether this was normal and they all said that in the beginning most people feel nothing. I was concerned. I went back on Friday for session number two. The same thing happened, lots of pain, burning feelings in my body. I went home for the weekend and really listened to what my body was telling me and on Monday I called the radiographer and told her I wasn’t continuing with the radiation. She was surprised but didn’t try to change my mind. I felt an enormous relief afterwards, it felt like the right decision for me.
Unfortunately my husband did not find it easy to understand why I had stopped. He didn’t understand why when something was scientifically proven to work, why I would not do it if it may prolong my life. It was difficult to explain that it was just a feeling, a gut instinct that made me sure that I didn’t need it but I had no scientific evidence to support my case. I wonder whether by relying so much on scientific evidence that we really miss our own ability to know the truth.

I am now 5 years post treatment and I have no regrets about any of the decisions I made. It is often so difficult to really follow your own intuition and really do what you want to do and my whole experience was a real lesson for me in so many ways. I would love to say that I live every day consciously following my instincts but I am imperfect and sometimes I don’t listen so well but then I remember and I get back on track. I still have conflict between head and heart, I have started to learn more about Energy Medicine because my instincts lead me to take the training but my head is still wondering why. The great thing though is that following your heart feels so great that even if it doesn’t make any sense it makes your soul sing and that is difficult to argue with!