IS CANNABIS A GATEWAY DRUG TO HEALTH OR HARM?
Wanna know something crazy?
In 1937, Cannabis (aka marijuana) was federally banned.
It was listed as a schedule 1 drug. Schedule 1 drugs are those that have a high addiction rate, have no medical benefit, and can be abused such as LSD and heroin.
Ironically, caffeine is pretty widely known to have one of the highest addiction rates and is commonly abused by individuals across the country... along with cigarettes, alcohol and food. Yet they are all legal and have extensive lists of the dangers they pose on our health. Even death.
They considered cannabis aka marijuana to be a gateway drug. Gateway drugs are those that are “thought” to lead to more potent or dangerous drugs.
YET, we have no evidence of direct cause of death due to cannabis consumption. There also lies no proof that it causes the user to sway towards another drug. Actually, we have an abundance of research explaining the health BENEFITS gained by cannabis consumption.
Here’s the crazy part:
The same federal government that banned cannabis is the same agency that holds a patent on a synthetic (lab created) version of cannabis as a NEUROPROTECTANT. Meaning, it protects the brain.
Sounds like a gateway to health to me…
Also important to mention, the lab created version – the one the government holds patents on – has a long list of crappy side effects. Crazy, right?
The power of community and hope will bring awareness and truth back to this plant that was used for centuries to restore health. For starters, studies show people do better when they are involved, have a sense of belonging and can engage with other like-minded. This is critical in normalizing and progressing in the cannabis conversation.
This is important information to know. Without it, you could be missing out on one of the most important tools in your health recovery box!
Hi! I'm Stephanie, your cannabis cancer coach!
A title I never ever thought I'd hold. Until cancer clawed at my family with my Dad's diagnosis over a decade ago. EVERYthing changed. Every. Single. Thing. 😲
My habits, my thoughts, my interests, my circle of influence, my education, my relationships, and ultimately my career - and here I am. 🤗
I partner with people who have cancer who know they have options - they just may not be sure what they are and need clarity. 🕵
I work with those who receive this diagnosis and have realized at some point that they don't want that traditional path that so many have taken - the fingers crossed, let's hope for the best route. 😕
I engage with people who want to heal their cancer. They know they have control over their habits, and they recognize that they need accountability and guidance to make changes.👊
I reassure my clients that they are on the right track once they've checked in with their gut - their heart and their values. NOTHING should compromise this. EVER. ☝
I enable the healer in people with cancer. Our thoughts come before all other aspects of life. You have to heal in your mind to make way for the rest of your body to follow. 💖
I educate my clients on how their endocannabinoid system works. This is a MIND-BODY system. Left unchecked we are wide open to illness and dis-ease. We learn, tone, adjust, enhance, and supplement intentionally. 💚🌿
To wrap that up, we use the Cancer Recovery Technique to address it all - build a daily "what to do" plan, and become partners in healing! 💞
I get so many questions and have so much to share, I've decided to host 'The Theta Living Show' to bring some perspective to the community. Look for this week's episode of CANCER COACH CHAT where I address "struggling with treatment".
💞 Feel free to SHARE, in LOVE 💞
COMMUNITY IS IMMUNITY
Beyond the therapies, the programs, the classes and the products we offer....
We are here because there is a gap in the way someone with CANCER is cared for. THERE ARE OPTIONS for care and YOU (everyone) needs to know about them <3
Unfortunately, when the words "You have cancer" are dished out, there is no manual on what to do next in order to restore your actual HEALTH.
The doctors follow guidelines for drug administration to attack the cancer, but there's no advice or guidance on what you are supposed to do with your LIFE and how to live with cancer in a meaningful, intentional, and purposeful way.
There's no path for recovery.
The system is designed to only attack the cancer, not to support the BEING the cancer has developed in.
It is leaving people to fall through the cracks; physically, emotionally, practically, spiritually and socially.
My Dad was one of them.
As his caregivers, so were we :(
-He/we had questions that were left unanswered.
-He/we had ideas that were laughed at.
-He/we shared his at-home remedies that were giving him improvements in his daily life and it was blown off.
-He/we informed medical staff of therapies we were considering and were told, "do not waste your time".
So deflating. Especially when you are the one facing your mortality - protecting your life, seeking every meaningful minute on this earth and are told - just STOP wasting your time.
He was offered the 75 year old standard of conventional care and was making every attempt to preserve precious life.
We just wanted support and maybe....a smile or glimmer of encouragement ;)
Time after time, I sat in the waiting room of my Dad's treatments wishing and PRAYING that something would appear that could offer HOPE: a flyer, an advertisement, a commercial...something - anything that could point to the additional information that I was searching for.
He just wanted to feel good.
He wanted to be understood.
He wanted to be listened to.
He wanted resources and information.
He wanted to find something NORMAL in his life aside from cancer.
NONE of this happened at his oncological appointments. The docs were in and out in a matter of minutes. Never giving warm - fuzzy feelings. No compassion. Never offering hope or signs that (we) were doing things right.
It was so dark and grim. Honestly, I felt like we all died a little each time we attended one of those appointments.
It was discouraging and took so much extra work to re-fill (all of ourselves) after those meetings.
-We wanted a place to go that offered relaxation and reminded us that taking action in FAITH was (always) the right answer.
-We needed to talk to others who had ideas to share and the decency to listen to ours.
-We wanted hugs and love and understanding and to just know that cancer didn't have to be a death sentence.
We didn't necessarily need to be told all-the-things, we just wanted to connect with others, in the same situation (community) who embraced us as we were.
WE NEEDED THE IMMUNITY OF COMMUNITY!
I remember my Mom reviewing medical bills. She never did this in front of my Dad though. She also never complained. EVER. I took a peek one day. My heart-rate rose and I could feel the sweat beading up all over my body. A knot formed in my throat and I couldn't swallow as I scrolled my eyes across the bills.
It looked like a kid had typed in ridiculously random numbers and hit print. NOPE. True numbers. Legit bill.
I had no idea the disgusting depth of costs cancer came with (a topic for discussion at another time). Out of control system, for sure.
In my endless and non-stop research, I felt like I had found a few places that offered what seemed to be the support and therapies we were looking for! After my previous quick glance at my Dads medical bills, I knew the were out of our affordability range.
From there, Theta Living came to be and we welcome YOU, whether you are the patient or the caregiver - we are here for you.
-We will listen to you.
-We understand you.
-We will smile and love you and share all of the resources we have to share (if needed).
We count on COMMUNITY to support COMMUNITY.
We are dependent upon sponsors to enable us to provide these programs/classes to those with CANCER and their CAREGIVERS for FREE, without referral <3
ENDOCANNABINOID BASICS, Why should I care?
There is an abundance of scientific articles, opinion papers, and informative literature regarding cannabis and the endocannabinoid system.
But to the average person, it's all very confusing!
To get in on the increasing popular cannabis conversation though, you should at least have a simple understanding of how this system works and why it's relevant to you.
So, let's talk ENDOCANNABINOID basics:
* Endocannabinoid System (ECS) - the natural occurring system inside everything in the animal kingdom with a vertebrae that promotes healing. All toxins (physical and emotional) can potentially throw this system off balance, creating chaos that creates chronic conditions and leads to disease.
* Homeostasis - THIS is the job of the ECS, to achieve balance within the system. This is when healing takes place. When the ECS is off (balance) illness and disease creep in. When homeostasis is present, dis-ease is not!
* 5 main functions - pain sensation, cell function, appetite, mood and sleep. This system is considered the Master Regulator of regulations.
* Cannabinoids - 3 types: ENDO (produced by your body), PHYTO (produced by the cannabis plant), PHARMA (produced in the lab)
* Receptors - the sites of which cannabinoids interact and produce their effects. Named: CB1, CB2, GPR55, TRPV1 and PPARy. Cannabis, Hemp and Liverwort are unique in that they offer compounds that our CB1 and CB2 receptors respond to, very closely mimicking our bodies own natural endocannabinoids: Anandamide and 2-AG.
GPR55, TRPV1 and PPARy respond to the (phyto)cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, amino acids, and proteins.
These receptor sites are found throughout the entire body, except for the brain stem, hence the reason (fatal) overdose does not occur.
* Terpenes - oils found in numerous plants that contribute to healing. Terpenes are also what gives each plant their unique smell.
* Flavonoids - a diverse group of phytonutrients (plant chemicals) found in almost all fruits and vegetables. Along with carotenoids, they are responsible for the vivid colors in fruits and vegetables. With more than 6,000 types, they are the largest group of phytonutrients. These also play a unique role in healing.
* Entourage Effect - the unique chemical reaction that happens within the ECS when ALL cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids are present.
* Cannabis is unique in that it supplies certain compounds that no other plants offers. Additionally, each strain of cannabis also produces numerous terpenes and flavonoids that are found in other plants. This is why full spectrum products work best and are the number one recommendation. A nutritious and wholesome diet enhances cannabinoid therapy and vice versa.
* Cannabis can be used in raw, heated, and aged forms to supply different cannabinoids to the EC system.
* The ECS regulates all the molecules within us (dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, cortisol, insulin, GABA, etc.). Emotions can and do make us sick when they are over or under produced. EMOTIONAL HEALTH IS IMPERATIVE TO COMPLETE HEALTH and disease recovery.
* Cannabis helps the body breakdown sugars.
* All cells within the body inside and out are repairable! This means you can regrow bone, cartilage, skin, hair and muscle... you were so intelligently designed that you can literally (self) repair EVERYTHING! It is on the ECS "to-do" list to offer service to these tasks on a daily basis.
* When treating any chronic condition, focusing on balancing the ECS is a must. Attacking the "issue" is not the appropriate approach. Your body is always striving for balance (homeostasis). The ECS is responsible for this. When off kilter, we must give it support to function to bring optimal health in alignment.
* There are many methods of cannabis use. Contrary to popular belief, smoking *can* have medical benefits especially to certain lung conditions (relaxes the tissues) IF and ONLY IF it is done appropriately. My number one recommendation is CANNABIS OIL (oral and suppository forms).
---according to studies, smoking cannabis does not cause lung cancer! Just ask 'The National Cancer Institute' who has made this statement.
Once you understand the role and importance of the ECS, it is clear that one of the biggest contributing factors to developing a cancer diagnosis is an unstable and deficient EndoCannabinoid System.
Live your life the way you were designed to live: intentionally healthful and happy. Cannabis is part of making sure both of these are fulfilled ;)
CLEANING TO COMBAT CANCER
Learn what you can control and control it!
Your home is the best place to start in creating a healthy environment.
With these simple and ideal reminders, you have a great place to start. I use essential oils, in a few different mixtures, depending on what room and what I'm cleaning.
Mixed with just a few ingredients such as baking soda, rubbing alcohol and distilled water, I can confidently sanitize my home for myself and my family without having the worry about contributing to cancer or other health ailments!
Here are a few simple tips to get you started on the healthy (and deliciously scented) path to cleaning:
CLEAN UP TOUCHZONES
Some germs are short-lived, others live long times. Regardless, it’s important to clean those areas that are most prone to being holding cells for them. These are areas that your hands come into contact with most frequently. The commonly touched, yet overlooked places of the home: doorknobs, light switches, fridge/oven/dishwasher handles, cupboard knobs, dining room chairs, faucets…..and the toilet flusher!
Clean these places up with a quick spray of a highly effective essential oil blend and swipe them with a cloth and you can be sure to not spread germs throughout the house. Hard surfaces love to invite germs to stay awhile so be sure to give a good scrub to these areas.
Remember, we are here to make healthier homes and bodies. Using toxic chemicals to kill these bad germs off will not get us ahead in this game. No bleach or heavy chemicals needed. Make yourself a solution in a spray bottle and that will certainly do the trick. If you really want to get fancy, you can add isopropyl alcohol to the spray bottle for a boost of germ fighting action.
THE KITCHEN IS GERM ZONE
I’m sure you clean the kitchen often so you are probably thinking your kitchen is good. However, seemingly clean and clean beneath the surface are two different topics. I’m talking mold, mildew, food-borne pathogens, all the yuckies we can’t necessarily see.
To start, you are going to have to deep clean the kitchen! No fun, I know - but necessary.
Moisture is not your friend in areas that can be breeding grounds for germs: the sink, the fridge. Wipe everything down with your homemade EO kitchen spray. Keep pets off of the counters and tables. Use natural dishwasher detergent and don’t let water sit anywhere in this room. The moisture will quickly and surely become a problem.
Something that has become a handy-dandy cleaning tool for me in the kitchen (and sometimes lends itself in the bathroom: shower) is a steamer. It blasts gunk with steam, pretty fascinating. Saves me from scrubbing. I coat the area with a good layer of kitchen cleaning spray and steam away!
When you are cleaning up produce, meats and other foods – don’t forget they may have brought in food borne illnesses that will make you feel not-so-good. Keep the kitchen clean, always!
ONTO SCRUBBING THE BATHROOM
When we think of where the grossest of germs lives, we typically think about the bathroom. While cleaning sinks, toilets and floors thoroughly is a given (I hope), don’t ignore germ-harboring areas such as your toothbrush, personal care products and makeup containers. In addition to keeping them away from the flushing zone, the toothbrushes should be changed at least every 2-3 months.
Mix up a special blend just for bathroom cleaning and be sure to make that first scrub session a very, very thorough one. Another idea is to re-caulk tubs, windows, faucets to seal up any leaky areas that can contribute to growths that you don’t want growing. From there, you will be on maintenance mode.
Remove all piles of laundry and towels to prevent mildew. Don’t forget to wash the shower curtain. It’s so easy to go months and months with the same curtain hanging, just think of what that thing is housing. Eww. Make it a habit to wash it weekly. Have a spare on hand to swap out so you don’t feel the laundry pressure!
Spray hairbrushes, combs and styling tools with your general bathroom spray. Hey, you never know what’s living on those things!
My other bathroom tip is to always use new cleaning towels, mops and brushes. Don’t store them without their own cleaning between uses, otherwise you are just shuffling germs around the room. Sprinkling some baking soda to the mix gives an added roughness for the grimy buildups that tend to occur in the bathroom.
Total cleanup on slaying germs while staying chemical free!
Another tip that I do in my own home that I’d like to share, which is also such a simple solution to a regular cleaning schedule is to use a bag in the garbage can. Certainly it isn’t attractive and my leftover grocery shopping bags don’t match my décor, but it saves me from nasty cans and having to touch whatever my family and invited guests have tossed in them.
Pull the bag out when full, give a few spritzes of the pre-made bathroom spray, and stuff a new bag in the garbage can!
IF SOMEONE HELD IT, IT NEEDS TO BE CLEANED
I’m talking about all of the handheld devices. There are so many of them: phones, tablets, game controllers, remote controls, firestick controllers, keyboards, accessories, and on and on. They get overlooked in the cleaning process in most homes.
A good spray with your general, clean-all spray and a quick and gentle wipe down will do the trick and kill germs so they aren’t being spread by the most commonly touched objects in your home!
How many times have you cleaned your cell phone? Personally, mine gets cleaned several times per day because every time I go into the bathroom, I spray it with my general cleaner and wipe it down quickly. (guilty – I take my phone to the bathroom with me. TMI, I know!).
This particular device, though, is a haven for germs. I’ve caught suggestion (but not proof) that they may even be home to more germs that public restrooms. For something that is a constant gateway to your face: mouth, nose, eyes, ears, it deserves all the extra cleaning love you can give it to prevent the spread of viruses and illness.
I’ve never been that parent to let my kids play with my phone or handheld devices, but for those of you who are – kids are germ bombs! Clean those suckers. A LOT!
WASH THE DIGITS
I’m referring to your hands and feet. Now we don’t have to overdo it here, but we need to keep up with our cleanliness. The most effective way to prevent the spread of illness is just by washing with soap and water. I have the most awesome hack in taking the general cleaner and turning it into a foaming soap!
Do you wash your hands good enough or really good? Are you singing the alphabet and getting the tops, bottoms, and in-betweens? Under the nails and around the wrists? If you are, you will need to sing that alphabet song two times!
Alert: antibacterial soap is toxic! I can’t tell you what to do, but I can recommend that you use the Thieves soap and put my twist on it for a foaming wash!
Now that we’ve covered hands, how about feet? No, I don’t expect you to wash your feet like you do your hands (unless they stink like my teenage boys, then I will ask you to kindly give a few courtesy washes throughout the day)!
The overlooked germ culprit: wearing shoes in the house.
Just yuck! We wear our shoes in public places: parking lots, gas stations, RESTROOMS, we walk through oil, bird (and who knows what other kinds of) poop, pee, squashed insects, fertilizers, chemicals, and all the other grossness of the world. Why – oh why – do we all not take our shoes off in the home?
One of the best ways to keep dirt and germs including allergens and dust at bay is to ask absolutely everyone who steps foot in your house to:
Please remove their shoes!
This also makes cleaning so much easier. Lay a rug down or put a boot tray by the door to allow people to keep their shoes orderly, by the entryway.
“Things” can also live in your bedroom. It’s a really good idea to wash your bedding weekly: sheets, pillowcases, blankets and comforters. They are the kind of germs that spread around town, but they certainly challenge your immune system and have the power to make you feel like crud.
Pet bedding, too!
And, I’m sure we’ve all tried to wash a pillow or two only to pull it from the dryer deformed and never to be the same again. Replace pillows like you do your toothbrush. Or, consider getting a silver pillow
DIFFUSE "CLEAN" AND "HEALTH" INTO THE AIR
First, be sure to change the filter on your furnace. This can immensely improve the quality of your home’s air.
Next, consider an air cleaner. Check out Air Doctor. It’s like bringing fresh air into your home, every time you turn it on.
Finally, and my favorite, diffuse essential oils into every room you inhabit during the day. The blends and benefits are endless. I would love to welcome you to my group to share recipes, tips and tricks in diffusing essential oils in your home!
If you have kids or grandkids or babysit, chances are you have toys that need to be cleaned. I’m not talking about wiping down each and every single toy down on the daily, but I do recommend taking that general spray blend and after you (or the kids) have layed out their toys (or before they clean their messes) spray EVERYTHING!
Play time is learning time and that’s great but we don’t’ need to spread germs in the process!
Want my essential oil tips and tricks? Join my private facebook group to give and take all the suggestions regarding essential oils, including CBD.
Cancer recovery takes up so much time. Your day can feel overwhelmingly controlled by all-the-things that contribute to recovery. Many people feel like all they do, all day long, every single day, is something in relation to cancer recovery and it becomes taxing on your emotional status.
Would you like to have freedom from that?
Then, you MUST plan your day, and live by those plans if you want your time to go the way you wish for it to go.
Yes, I'm asking you to sit down and fill your calendar with absolutely everything you know you have to do.
Spending time filling in your calendar WILL give you the opportunity to breathe, relax, and also afford you time off from what seems to be constant cancer recovery strategies!
This might sound backwards or upside-down, but the more you plan your treatments, therapies, juicing, enemas, supplements and office visits, the more freedom in your schedule you will find!
Want to know how?
Because when you are planning all of your recovery strategies, appointments and sessions, you are also planning for the things in life that have NOTHING to do with cancer!
Just the act of WRITING your activities in on your calendar is empowering. As you plan, you are in control of what your day looks like - giving you opportunity to create a day designed...BY YOU!
You are the one who sets forth the parameters of your day. I'm sure it's full to the brim, but knowing you are the one who filled it in is freedom in and of itself.
With a cancer diagnosis, we tend to make everything we do about the disease. All of our waking hours are spent overcoming, learning and researching about it. conversations are spend discussing it. Visits are utilized to talk more about it.
We wait for those breaks in our schedule that allow for something enjoyable to fit in and they never do. Yet, when any extra minutes happen to open up - healers guilt tends to creep in and we feel like we should spend them on something in relation to: healing. And, we all know that guild it not healthy.
You have to schedule in the FUN time so that it happens with intention and guilt free. This will allow your body to feel at ease when it is doing something other than engaging in an anti-cancer strategy.
Sounds easy enough, but it takes time and practice. That's why it's such a HUGE part of our Cancer Recovery Technique program. We keep our clients accountable to their calendars!
Want to learn more? Go to our "contact" page and request a call to find out how the Cancer Recovery Technique can help you take control of your cancer journey!
Is the 'be comfy in your own skin' movement contributing to cancer?
Risky and sensitive question, I know!
This may seem controversial, but that's ok. Sometimes people need to have a nerve struck to make a very important, life saving change.
When you open yourself up to learning how foods and lifestyle can truly be medicinal and healing, (most) will never go back.
That's not to say there will never be indulgence for cravings...once and a while...but once you know how nutrition serves your body, heals your tissues, and fuels your cells, it's nearly impossible to not want to eat healthfully.
I'm constantly hearing people say "don't diet", "don't deprive yourself", "eat what you want"...
...and the worst one, "let the kids be kids and enjoy treats". Of course I agree, but unfortunately these parents/people are talking about items they are ingesting that aren't even foods - they are processed, genetically modified organisms, laden with chemicals.
They cause inflammation, contribute to the development and spread of disease with ABSOLUTELY ZERO BENEFIT TO THE HUMAN BODY. Actually, they HURT our bodies and are one of the main contributing factors to a cancer diagnosis.
Nope. We shouldn't feel deprived, or dieting, or suffering over any of this, but when you give yourself the gift of information and knowledge and really understand what is going into your body - what foods are doing for your body - and how food is either healing or hurting your body, we can lean towards more of a balanced emotional-psychological connection to food.
"Know better do better", right?
I'm a life-long learner. The house rule for my family is: did man create it or did God provide it? Now, make your choice!
THIS is why we spend a good portion of nutrition talk in the CANCER RECOVERY TECHNIQUE. Food is medicine, if we make the CHOICE for it to be.
Disclaimer: it may seem easier for me to live this way because of my Dad and sister. However, regardless of their diagnosis - I/my family makes choices with every bite we take.
I don't judge as I don't want to be judged, but I know I am and that's ok. I can overlook the insecurities of others as they are only projecting them towards me.
Remember that as you make shifts and changes. Those who think you are "weird" or "extreme" are having an internal battle that you have no idea about. Let them be them and YOU be YOU.
I get the whole be comfy in your own skin movement. I also know that cancer, diabetes, and obesity doesn't look good on anyone.
Married, with cancer?
For couples who are facing cancer, there are often changes in relationship dynamics and the roles and responsibilities that each person has. Some may be for the better (as in changes towards better health for both of you) and some may feel like they are .... not so good.
Depending on treatment choices, the spouse with the diagnosis may face physical challenges, but are likely to experience a wide range of emotional challenges ....
Like, grieving the loss of "how things use to be."
Like, "Why is this happening?"
Like, "How is our relationship going to be effected for the long term?"
Let's not forget the caregiving spouse and the potential physical demands now required of them. Certainly, there are emotional traumas to deal with. Left unchecked, we have the perfect storm for an overwhelmed, misunderstood, tired, frustrated, aggravated couple.
I see newlyweds, new parents, seasoned parents, grandparents, retirees, and couples entering this new stage in their lives who are 'suddenly' overtaken by a cancer diagnosis.
For most people, it is shocking diagnosis and they weren't prepared for the road ahead. So many people have the, "it happens to everyone else, not me" mind frame.
-What treatment should I accept?
-Will I be able to work?
-Can we afford my therapies?
-What do I do about my nutrition, supplements, stress, bills, pain, concerns, personal care products, and all the other things buzzing around on the internet?
The heaviest wonder that couples are left thinking is, how can we get through this together, and still like one another?
Is it possible to come out on the other side even stronger and more connected?
Many couples have shared with me their challenges, thoughts, and resistances. We can't possibly expect our partners to understand what we are going through and unfortunately, the caregiver (a lot of times) becomes the sounding board (or proverbial whipping post) for the cancer patient. Who else do you express your devastations and utmost upsets with?
While there are a number of challenges that you and your partner are up against when dealing with a cancer diagnosis, many of them can be overcome with support programs designed specifically for the spouse (with cancer) as well as support programs for the caregiver as well. You both have very unique needs and they are all in need of being fulfilled.
Various therapies and integrations are a necessary part of cancer recovery, for both members of the relationship. With a few (or possibly many) new lifestyle techniques geared for each of you, a world of difference can be made.
It is our mission to help every person with cancer have a comprehensive and holistic (physical and emotional) cancer recovery plan. Contact us so we can share with you how we can support your relationship, and ensure both partners to continue to feel loved, valued and connected to one another during and beyond the cancer chapter of your life together.
Stop asking friends with cancer, "How Are You?"
When you ask a friend with cancer, "How Are You?", what are you really asking them? Furthermore, do you really want to know what they are going through and how it is making them feel?
Their seemingly never ending to-do list of therapies, supplements, treatments, doctor appointments, medications, drinks, shakes, juicing, meditation, mental anguish, uncertainties, financial stability - or instability - security of their job, lack of support from family, loss of friendships, sleepless nights, worrisome thoughts that swirl constantly through their head, nausea, lack of appetite, funky bowel habits ..... it can be an awkward response. Those are questions for their cancer healing team, not a co-worker, neighbor or friend.
The answers can be so awkward, actually, that most of the time the response you will hear will be a quick: "fine, everything is fine". Nobody wants to lay out their fears, concerns, and questionables on their friends plate.
Instead, change the question to: HOW IS YOUR HEART TODAY?
Let your friend who is working to overcome a disease that is plaguing this country respond with feelings that are deep in their heart. Releasing these feelings is therapeutic in and of itself.
By this small, yet powerful question, you will open the gates for discussion that have substance and meaning. Putting a simple twist on an overused question will provide an opportunity to talk about what is really weighing on their shoulders rather than just providing the standard space for them to give the robotic, machine-like response of, "so far so good."
The words: 'You have cancer', are incredibly powerful. Those three words can wreak havoc on your emotions and too often of times they get stuck on auto-play in the mind.
In everything you do: work, eat, exercise, shower, travel, visit, relax - this person is now doing so as someone with cancer. --- that is a heavy weight to carry on the heart.
Being asked, "How Is Your Heart" allows them to express how they are really feeling: joy, gratitude, sadness, aching. Perhaps their heart is craving human touch and connection and they just need a hug. Maybe their heart feels isolated and lonely and they need to find support and just don't know how to express this.
The next time you are presented with the chance to ask someone you know with cancer (how they are doing) ….
Look them in the eye, put your hand on their shoulder and ask: HOW IS YOUR HEART TODAY? Touch, connection and community are basic human necessities and you will have fulfilled all of them in this basic act of kindness and thought.
You could be the light of their day and shift their energy in a positive direction for days to come!
While you're at it, actively training yourself to ask this alternative question to an old age way of opening conversation, remind yourself that you are human, too/
You are more than a human doing, you are a human BEING!
Examine your heart, your soul, and your state of being in connection to both.
We are not machines that are meant to stay constantly busy. We are getting lost in the busyness of life: technology and connection to community is being forgotten and thrown aside.
This disconnect and stress load is part of the dis-ease of cancer itself and it is a known contributor to fueling its growth and development.
Part of human life is to LIVE with meaning: we are supposed to have a balanced existence. It's not just about fitting more on the to-do list, our mind-body-spirit-soul is meant to be LIVING life.
"How are you DOING" is the perfect example that we are programmed to be in never-ending (doing) motion, leaving E-motion out of the equation, or tucking it deep down inside. Stop that.
PAUSE, TOUCH, LOCK EYES, and ask your friend with cancer:
HOW IS YOUR HEART TODAY?
Embrace this human to human connection and listen to the condition of your own heart in the process. In addition to contributing to a friends healing, it could be just the cancer prevention ingredient that your very own soul is desiring!