As I write this, I am listening to Handel’s Messiah playing in the background – an age old Easter ritual for me. As well as calming my soul and lifting my heart, it reminds me of the underlying pagan theme of this time of year — the cycles of nature: spring and summer, flower and fruit, birth and death. It’s a message that all of us affected by cancer need to take to heart.
I spent yesterday morning in the garden getting rid of the early weeds that have blown in on the wind and sipped a cup of tea in the early sunshine, filled with excitement at all the potential around me, and in the knowledge that the next four weeks will bring total transformation to my surroundings. And it will all happen quite naturally, with no help from me!
There is a stark contrast here with the world of cancer, and evidence based medicine. The high tech, high stakes nature of conventional medicine is part of life for those of us who are going through and beyond cancer. Being treated with radiation and poison, however miraculous, is both a blessing and a curse. The message is inherently disempowering – teaching us to disregard the power of our own bodies to fight this scientifically baffling disease. We can forget, or at least underestimate, the unfathomable ability of our own cells to renew themselves, with a little encouragement.
Sometimes we need a reminder to believe in ourselves.
To believe in our cells.