I was talking to a friend of mine on the beach one lovely afternoon while taking in the beauty and grandness of Mother Ocean. I asked my friend to talk to me about her sister who had passed away from Cancer several years before. Her sister was her best friend and of course she misses her deeply.
Before I go on, I will make one thing clear–it’s true that the last kinds of stories you want to hear about when you have cancer are those stories of death and failure to “fight this disease.” But for some reason I felt I need to know. So, I asked her to tell me about this beloved sister of hers.
My friend described her late sister as a free spirited human being; a loving mother and creative individual who was passionate about life. She was in her mid-30’s and had a great life. My friend also said her sister was a radical who was connected to her soul and knew what was right for her. And what was right for her was to refuse the harsh treatments.
When she told me this, I was at a loss. My friend explained that her sister had tried some of the cancer medications, but did not like the reactions. Her sister felt there was no need to resist “what is.” As educated and young as she was, she was determined to live her life her way. I asked her if she was mad at her sister for not fighting. She said, “No. I miss my sister, but I admire her courage and her path.”
I remember feeling numb, but the word radical stayed with me. It resonated with me. You see, the typical course of cancer is you take meds, experience pain, suffer, then maybe become cancer free or maybe die. But this woman was a radical; she chose the natural course of her life. She felt that if she was meant to be on this planet longer, she would not have gotten sick. She followed the path of her body. RADICAL. Nobody does that, I thought. She was and is courageous.
How am I a radical?
Well, I have been told that my cancer is not curable and that I need to accept it. I did not accept this. I am a radical in a different way than my friend’s sister. I will not accept this prognosis. I said, “I will HEAL myself and be a radical by believing there is such possibility as STAGE IV and CURED.” I know no one does this, and so I thought…I WILL.