Friday, May 11, 2012

As many of you know, I am a student here at the University of Phoenix. I am 3.5 classes away from a Bachelors Degree in Psychology. I have not applied for many scholarships on this journey, but this one in particular caught my interest, and continued to hold it, until it was almost too late for me to participate.  I have even decided at this point that winning money, although would be nice is not why I am participating.  I think this scholarship believes in similar things that I do. I am, for lack of a better term a holistic healer.

The scholar ship is called the James "Rhio" O'Connor Memorial Scholarship Fund.  James "Rhio" O'Connor was diagnosed with Mesothelioma, and told he had one year to live.  He decided to chart his own treatment path and lived 6 years longer than his original prognosis. 

How did he do this?  He researched his disease, he consulted doctors, he spoke to researchers, patients, and many other sources to learn all of the therapies available. 

Mesothelioma is cancer of the lining of the lungs and stomach and is classified as an aggressive cancer. Mesothelioma is also, often misdiagnosed. Many times the diagnosis comes long after the symptoms become noticeable.

The only true medical treatment, listed on many sites I have visited, is surgery or chemotherapy and these only add to the length of time you may have as there is no cure for Mesothelioma.

With a prognosis of  one year to live, I am not surprised that Mr O'Connor looked for other treatments and ways to deal with his condition.  I would like to think that I would have the same drive to live and live the best life I could, with whatever time I could muster.

The decision to ignore medical professionals to learn more about other options, is not always easy but often they are the biggest a patient will ever make.

One of the non conventional therapies for Mesothelioma is natural medicines. These are plants, flowers, extracts, vitamins, minerals and supplements that have been shown to assist in easing discomfort and inflammation as well as prolong life. Of course this is not reviewed by the FDA, but that does not mean it can't be an option.

Changing of the diet has also been proven to assist in cancer patients as well as many other diseases.  Usually these methods include cooking fresh whole foods rather than packaged or processed foods. 

As you may or may not know I practice many energy modalities.  These modalities work with the energy in and around our bodies.  Over last year I have been doing Reiki as as Hospice Volunteer.  I enter into peoples life at the end and bring to them a way to relax.   The relaxation and the peace they find during the session is something I am not sure I could express with words, but what I do know is, they all enjoy it.

Other modalities that are used with cancer patients, are acupuncture, massage, reflexology,  sound therapy, meditation, Homeopathy, and Yoga.

I would like to think that in a similar situation, I would reach out to my friends and colleagues in the holistic wellness community.  I believe that knowing what I do about alternative therapies, my pride or ego could step aside long enough to be able to ask for help.

I have seen many people with cancer in my life time and I am sure I am going to know many more.  One thing that I know often challenges them is whether or not to use treatments that are known to harm more than just the body's invader.  Many times people will pass on chemotherapy or radiation because they want to spend the rest of their days more peacefully.  What many do not know about is the alternative therapies and their track record. 

It takes a strong person to make a choice that goes against the medical establishment and the FDA approved medications and more into unknown territory of natural remedies, meditation, and energy work.  

I hope that in this time you have learned that there are other possibities when being handed a life sentence and that you can advocate for yourself and life the rest of your days to the fullest, and sometime, just sometimes, like in the case of James “Rhio” O’Connor your legacy lives on and on.  

Brightest Blessings