Full of Love and Hope

You may remember me mentioning that my grandmother was diagnosed with breast cancer a few months ago. At first, we were told she would have surgery to remove the cancer cells and that would be it. Maybe some radiation treatments. It was stage 1 and non-invasive and so there wasn’t any reason to be alarmed.

After the surgery, however the doctors discovered that the cancer was actually very aggressive and she needed to have surgery again. So they went in again, checked her lymph nodes (thank God they were clear) and removed the rest of the tissue. We were then told she would need chemotherapy and radiation to prevent the cancer from recurring.

I’m not sure if I ever mentioned this but my aunt in Ohio has two boys with autism. A couple of years ago, they began treatment with a preventative medicine DAN! doctor. DAN! stands for Defeat Autism Now! Many of you may have heard of them through Jenny McCarthy‘s involvement with autism research. DAN! doctors are regular certified medical doctor’s who are trained in a certain protocol to assist and treat patients with autism.

Unfortunately, they are very expensive because insurance does not cover anything since it is considered preventative medicine. I can testify to it’s results though. My cousin went from a 4th grade to an 8th grade comprehension level in 2 months. He did chelation, went on supplements and my aunt cut gluten, casein, etc from his diet completely. No white flour, white sugar or white anything either. And as long as he sticks to this diet, his symptoms are minimized drastically.

Preventative medicine doctors cure ailments rather than treating symptoms. For something in your body to be malfunctioning, your body must be deficient in something. And considering the garbage that we eat in pretty much everything and the lack of vitamins and nutrients in most foods, that is not hard to understand. Therefore, the doctors test all of your levels, metal levels, blood levels, all of your vitamins, etc. and prescribe certain supplements to bring your body to where it should be.

So of course we wanted my grandmother to visit with one of these doctors before jumping in to chemo. I personally, have very mixed feelings about chemotherapy. I’ve seen so many people suffer from chemo and I sometimes wonder if it doesn’t just kill you sooner. Yes, it kills the cancer cells but it also kills all the healthy cells in your body and puts a tremendous strain on your internal organs. Not to mention all the nasty side effects.

She met with the doctor and he explained that everyone has cancer cells and once our immune systems get weak (and other contributing factors like diet, etc) the cancer cells begin to multiply and attack the healthy cells. So it is imperative to have a healthy immune system. He was totally against chemo. He prescribed several “super vitamins” and a very strict diet to prevent the cancer from coming back.

At first my grandmother was comfortable with this but the more she talked to friends who had cancer and her regular doctor the more confused she became. Everyone advised to attack it aggressively. So she ended up going with the chemo. She was also worried about financially not being able to afford the preventative treatment (vitamins alone would have cost almost $1000 per month). Personally, I think a combination of radiation and the diet and supplements would have been enough since she is officially cancer free and this is just a preventative treatment but I’m not a doctor.

Today is her first chemo treatment (i hate it so much that i cringe when i call it treatment) and I am a nervous wreck. She is a strong woman and I know she will pull through this but I hate to see her suffer. I pray the side effects aren’t too much for her, she’s got a very sensitive stomach. I’m full of love and hope for her every day, but especially this morning.

I’d love to hear what you think about treatment options and if anyone has any encouraging stories of cancer survivors that would be wonderful. Please keep her in your prayers.

Click here to read an excellent article called Life Over Cancer.

16 thoughts on “Full of Love and Hope

  1. wow. how heart wrenching. I don't know what would be right but how hard this is. We must pray to the Mother of God for her help. I am currently going to a naturopath myself and am hoping to change a lot about my lifestyle (eating etc). Someday I think insurances will have to cover more of these things, but it is not there yet. It is hard. And it is hard to know what to do or what way to choose.Can your Grandmother ask what supplements she can take to try to weather the chemo ? love and hugs to you.

  2. I just went through this with my mom, so I can imagine how hard it is for you. My prayers for you and your entire family.During chemo, typically, a person cannot eat all the foods that are good for fighting cancer (raw foods, foods with antioxidants, etc) because of the fear of bacteria. Once she is done with chemo, she should focus on eating foods rich in antioxidants, protein and fiber. Organic is best. Supplements are great, too.I hope this treatment will put her straight into remission and cure her! We're still waiting on that for my mom.

  3. My mom is a two-time breast cancer survivor, and I really understand what you are going through. Hugs and love and most importantly prayers.

  4. God bless and help your grandmother!Did you read "Knockout: Interviews with Doctors Who Are Curing Cancer–And How to Prevent Getting It in the First Place" by Suzanne Somers?There are amazing informations in this book.

  5. Dear Sylvia, We will be praying ardently for your grandmother. We will entreat the Panayia for her. What is her name? Do you have the beautiful Akathist to the Mother of God, Healer of Cancer(just like the one in the series- to the Nurturer of Children)? My mother-in-law is going through something similar… did you get my prayer request @ her? Thank you for keeping her(Angelica) in your prayers, as well! May our precious Lord have mercy on these women and the journey they are on. We also are full of Love and Hope! Our God is a great God!! + with much love in Christ, georgia

  6. Dear Sylvia, I'm sorry to hear about this – but, I have good news – my Mom has survived 3 different types of cancer in the last 20 years, praise God!!! So, don't give up hope. I agree with you on what we're all eating & probably the DAN Dr. would do better for her, but it's her choice, so we must keep praying!! After I read your blog today, I went over to the blog site of Fr. James Coles, http://frjamescoles.wordpress.com/ and the 2nd thing I read was entitled "Dusting Off Our Hearts", posted on May 15th, which I though was particularly good and appropos for this situation (even though I know you know all of this, it never hurts to be reminded! :-)g.k.worman

  7. Well,I just got off the phone with my Mom saying that my 86 year old father was responding to the milder form of chemo for his metasticized prostate cancer.I of course knew that the prayers to St. Pantaleimon and all the other Blessed Holy Unmercenaries were an important part of this even if my Protestant parents don't realize that. My Father has had cancer for 20 years and was not supposed to live more than 5-his type was aggressive and his initial surgery was botched. He has done nothing but tradtional medicine,but he also has had an attitude without self pity or bitterness about the mistakes in his care.Michelle M is right you have to be meticulous with the cleanliness of food when on chemo.Anyway,be thankful for the gift of the Orthodox Church because it just has so many blessings for those who are sick.I will lok for your grandmother's name and add it to my daily prayers for the sick.

  8. Sylvia, I can imagine how difficult this is for you and your family. The only thing that can help is prayer and patience. Put your faith in God and we must remember to say, Thy Will be done. We will pray for your grandmother. Sending you lot of hugs.

  9. Haven't been by in a while….wow. This is a hard one. I am so very sorry for this…and I agree with Elizabeth, we must pray to the Mother of God for her help. My illness has made me change so many things in my life…one of them being following a more "naturopath" lifestyle…I have heard that organic is best for fighting cancer and once I read about pomegranates as great antioxidants…My prayers for you, your family, and your beloved grandmother.

  10. I had breast cancer 18 months ago, it was stage 1, grade 1 and hadn't reached the lymph nodes so they removed the tumour and gave me radiotherapy. I wouldn't have taken vitamins, etc, instead of radiotherapy or chemo if I had needed it. It's just too vicious to leave to vitamins and pomegranate juice, after all, people got it long before processed diets and 'cancer-free' is a relative term, it only takes one little cancer cell in there to start the process all over again. I'm glad I didn't have to have chemotherapy but I would have taken it if they'd said it was necessary. Love to grandma and all my prayers.

  11. Thank you so much everyone, I truly appreciate your support. For those of you who asked, my yiayia's name is Sevasti. She was ok for two days until today, she's been sleeping all day because of the nausea. I will keep you posted.

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