So a few years ago I was diagnosed with a very serious type of cancer, not once twice but three times (hello!!)
It turned out that the mole on my back that the Doctors kept saying was ok, wasn’t.
I was at a work conference in London and my phone kept buzzing in my pocket, I crept out to the toilets to take the call, it was my Doctor… Backtracking massively.
“I’m afraid its about your test results, they didn’t come back as I expected. We need to get you to the hospital to do more tests, it’s urgent.”
“But you told me everything was ok Doctor, you reassured me”
“I’m really sorry dear”
Four days later I was sitting in a specialist’s office (as my original doctor didn’t have the balls to face me!)
He told me that I had a very dangerous type of skin cancer, malignant melanoma, and because it had not been treated and removed in the early stages I was now in a very high risk category as it may have spread to other organs in my body. Right now my chances were fifty- fifty.
After my surgery my scans came back clear, I was over the moon, but the doctors still seemed concerned and now I know why…
You are always in a high risk category with melanoma, there’s no five year all clear, and you are monitored closely for the rest of your life.
And so my long journey begun, more reoccurrences, major surgery, medical trials, chemo, you name it.
But it was the third diagnosis that that was the Game Changer for me.
The vibe that day in the oncologist’s office was grim. I knew what was coming the moment I sat down. The caring side head tilt… the gentle hand pat… the box of tissues in my peripheral vision, that moment they’re so well trained for.
“Its stage four, we are so sorry”. Everything they said after that was just a blur. All I knew was that options were running out and there is no stage five.
So I fired up google and started researching natural nutrition, plant based eating and what I needed to do to put my body in the best environment to heal.
I didn’t radicalise my diet, I just slowly started adding fresh green juices and smoothies, wheat grass shots, lots of clean wholefoods and my new way of eating just slowly evolved (and it still is evolving).
My kitchen became my pharmacy.
Instead of counting calories and fat, I started counting air miles and chemicals, I wanted to know where my food was coming from and if I needed a science degree to understand the ingredience then it was definitely off the menu.
I didn’t want my food to come out of a packet or a box, I wanted it to come from the ground the way nature intended it to be, and be nourished at a cellular level. Eating this way gave me incredible mental clarity, energy and vitality. It took me on a beautiful journey of enlightenment and realignment and it didn’t take me long to realise that good quality clean food looks after you.
And against my oncologist’s advice “don’t go on any silly diets, or see Naturopaths, and definitely don’t mess around with Chinese herbs.”
So I went out and found my crew.
A top notch Naturopathic Nutritionist who really helped me up my game, a wise old Chinese doctor/acupunturist, an amazing yoga teacher and on a daily basis I would meditate and practise Chi Gong. I seemed to feel very drawn to wisdom and the feeling of being grounded but most of all being present.
To move forward sometimes you have to retreat, and that’s what I did. I took myself out my life as I knew it, the crazy race, and decided to go at my own pace. It was time to listen, feel and honour my inner self.
And I prayed. A lot.
Only two months into the medical trial, I was told my latest scan was clear. There was a lot of raised eyebrows in the Oncologists office that day and a very baffled research nurse. I had defied the odds.
I tried to explain what I had been doing over the last few months. The doctor was very polite but he wasn’t interested.
“That’s great Alex, you just carry on with that”
And as I walked out his office I thought…. I will, thanks… I knew I was onto something.