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True Strength

I had a conversation with my Dad recently where he told me emotional people are perceived as weak. True to my piscean nature, I’m an emotional person and it’s taken me my whole life to be comfortable in my own skin because of common misconceptions such as this. I’m fighting bone cancer with a natural diet. I am anything BUT weak. Yet because the world perceives emotionless, robotic presence as some arbitrary sign of strength and most people are uncomfortable with any authentic emotion besides anger, I’m expected to either change myself or believe that I am somehow weaker than anyone who doesn’t express themselves emotionally as readily as I do.

I think this very idea is ridiculous and claws at the definitive nature of what true strength is at its essence. We teach boys not to cry (this is unnecessary too, but deserves to be addressed somewhere else). So why have I encountered this expectation as a female all of my life? Why are females considered weaker just because most are unable to lift heavy weights on barbells and aren’t afraid to cry?

I truly do think of crying as a fearless act for me now. In spite of perception, and with intimate understanding of my very real strength I have no fear of crying if I feel like it. I’m entitled to have and express my emotions when and where I choose. Are some spaces more tactful than others? Of course, but any space that includes loved ones or friends should expect and welcome my tears instead of rejecting them out of their own misguided discomfort. I’ve been told I need to be less emotional because it makes someone else uncomfortable too many times to count. You can only try to change yourself so many times before you accept yourself and the fact that others need to take you as you are or leave you alone. If most people’s perception of true strength is being an emotionless, heavy lifting piece of equipment I think they may be missing out on a few aspects that create some of the beauty in humanity.

I am not strong because I don’t cry, or because I can lift heavy weights. I am strong because I’m able to deal with my life circumstances in a way that no one else in my life would’ve been able to if they were handed the same situation. If I’m strong in that way, can you imagine the strength that pumps through everyone else’s life story since everyone is so unique? There are a few definitions for strength in the dictionary. The one that I resonated with was this; the power to resist attack and having durability. What makes you strong?

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Like any loving parent, our Father who is a loving omnipotent presence will support you where and when you need it without you knowing, without your acknowledgement and without hesitation because of the magnitude of love that there is for you.

Elohim has an exponential, unfathomable capacity to love us. We only get to experience a fraction of love’s energy through relationships we cultivate here in life. The greatest love here only might equate to a distant echo of the true love that is available from the Creator to his creation. We are all a part of that creation, every one of us and He loves us all.

Some may point out that there are some that do not please Him. Not being in favor of the Father is not the same as not being loved by Him. There is nothing and no one that is not loved by Elohim even the devil himself. Remember, Lucifer was the most favored at one point. He was called the Son of the Morning because of his beauty. His sin was letting the status of being most favored fuel the arrogant belief that he should be or was above our Father.

Our natural way is to destroy what we hate. Did Lucifer get destroyed? No, not at all! As a matter of fact, the complete opposite occurred. He was allowed to take followers and given a place to be God of since he wanted to be one. This is unconditional love. What greater love is there than the love of the Creator for His creation?

Elohim is the Father of all and loves all even as he is not pleased by all. A natural parent is not pleased by their child at all times yet they still love them. So it is with our Creator. We were created in His image and imitate His behavior on such a basic level so that His love can be understood and appreciated. No, there is no greater love than the unconditional love our Father has for us all.

They’ve laid their ideas of being a warrior on me. The armor…the sword…the shield. They’ve glorified my efforts to regain health for this gift called life and called it a “battle” or a “fight” when I don’t think it is either at all.

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I have been unable to connect with others with cancer because I didn’t follow the “tried and…true” path. I didn’t do chemo and I found a way to adhere to something that most people wouldn’t consider in their wildest dreams. I regularly question any doctor’s motives and seek research on my diagnosis concerning chemo’s success and role in recurrence. I’m unrelateable to people I have met who have dealt with or are dealing with cancer and I find them unrelateable to me.

I haven’t bought into the concept that I’m fighting some glorified battle that everyone who hasn’t had cancer in my circle tries to convince me I’m fighting. I find it interesting that so many people pretend to know what they are talking about and fail to really listen to what someone like me (who has first hand experience) knows about being diagnosed with what most consider a death sentence.

It’s out of good intention of course, but good intention does not have it’s desired effect in all cases. People worry about me getting depressed about my situation since I’ve been diagnosed with depression in the past. That’s why they call it a fight. It sounds strong, maybe because it’s been reiterated so much. For me, it automatically draws a picture of scarf clad, bald so-called “winners” who braved their way through treatments and didn’t die from complications. Excuse me for not subscribing to that similarly depressing thought to keep me from being depressed. I actually haven’t had a bought with real depression the entire time I’ve been healing. On the contrary, I feel more alive now than I ever did!

No, for me this isn’t a fight. It’s not a battle. This is a period of time in my life that I have been given the strength to overcome only by the grace of My Father who is My Elohim that loves me. I wouldn’t be here without His strength that kept me disciplined when I know myself to have none.

This is my truth. I do not know yours. If you have been diagnosed and are being treated with chemo I think you are braver than I am. Your armor, shield and sword are not being taken away by my interpretation of this experience. Continue fighting your battle with all the gusto and strength you can muster and I pray Our Creator carries you through this obstacle course called cancer.

Almost Spaghetti

Almost Spaghetti
servings:
spaghetti squash – 4
sauce – 2

1 spaghetti squash

sauce:
2 tomatoes
1/2 potato
1/4 onion
2 garlic cloves
1/4 bell pepper
3oz hippocrates broth or filtered water
parsley

Pre heat oven to 375 F. Poke holes in spaghetti squash with a skewer all over. Bake for 1 hr.

sauce:
combine tomato, onion, potato, bell pepper and garlic in a small saucepan with filtered water or leftover hippocrates broth. Simmer for 10 min.

Kra Flower Mashers

Serves 4

1 large Potato
1/4 Cauliflower
5-6 pcs Okra
2 Garlic cloves
2 T Cottage Cheese

Steam all veggies for 15-20 min. Remove from heat and add cottage cheese. Use a potato masher to blend ingredients.

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Servings: 2

1/4 c lentils
3 cloves garlic
2 card leaves and stalk
4 Tbsp low-fat cottage cheese
1/4 c flax seed oil
1/4 roast red bell pepper

The first time I made this, I made it from leftover lentils. I added all of the ingredients to my trusty Nutribullet until well blended then low and behold, I had dip!

Eggplant Veggie Sandwich

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Serves 3

1 Eggplant
6-8 Chard Leaves
Apricot Sage Sauce

Preheat oven to 400┬░. Slice eggplant into 2 in. thick slices and place on baking sheet. Bake for 20 min, flip then bake for another 5-10 min until both sides are lightly browned. After flipping, steam chard (or whatever veggies you want). Use eggplant slices like bread and apricot sage sauce like a spread or a dip.

I have faith in the human race, but sometimes it’s hard to when I hear these words so much. I’m often on the other end of the line with someone who has heard my story and “truly empathises” but knows the policy they are about to quote is morally incorrect. What I don’t understand is that most people are compelled to quote the morally incorrect policy anyway. For the life of me (literally) I can’t figure out why. If I were in their shoes I wouldn’t be able to continue working for my employer very long and I’m not just saying that. Yet others continue to do the same job that requires them to quote policy when explaining life threatening morally incorrect decisions to someone they supposedly empathise with.

Maybe it’s false empathy? Would I feel better if someone coldly explained things to me? Probably not. I just wish corporate policies weren’t designed to impede natural human compassion at every turn.

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How did so many humans with limitless bounds of knowledge, compassion and love create entities out of the idea that many of us represent one thing and then go about allowing those entities to systematically enforce the opposite of what we believe ourselves to represent?

I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. It’s common knowledge people lie to themselves all of the time to subdue their conscience. Corporate entities don’t have a pesky conscience to answer to, just policies. The people that quote the policies have a conscience, but it’s easy to satiate theirs with a story that they’re removed from the guilt of making a decision since they “understand, but policy states…”

If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results then what hope is there for humanity to be more common than corporate policy if we allow corporations to continue operating as they do today?┬áSomething has got to give and the change starts with one person at a time. I know I AM the change, I just worry if there’s enough changers in the world to make things right sometimes.

First and foremost, I want to give gratitude for my earth angels that sent donations to help support me! I am truly grateful for your contributions.

The ugly underbelly of the beast that is cancer that I hate to talk about is the crippling financial fallout. Finding a ringtone named “silence” and being uber excited about not hearing anything when I assign it to saved numbers for bill collectors is not something I expected to appreciate in this phase of my adult life.

I’ve officially been denied long term disability through my employer because “the policy doesn’t allow recognition of treatment that was not recommended by a medical professional” and naturopathic medicine is not recognized as a valid medical profession (even though it is in some states). I’ve also been denied the measly $200 max in food stamps for only 3 months due to documents I sent not being received, go figure. Oh and the realization that being a responsible young adult who didn’t have children actually hurts me when applying for food stamps is disheartening. There is no help for responsible single people whose taxes help everyone else. This little fact goes unrecognized in this country far too often.

Society’s policies have effectively pushed me beyond the realm of any valid form of social aid because of the decision I made to cure myself with natural remedies instead of sheepishly following medical instruction. Even now, if I allow the surgery to remove a still useful arm that causes me relatively no pain I can reapply and be approved. And yes, I did say the oncologist wants to remove my arm! It’s apparently the only recommended method to take my type of cancer out of my body since the 30s and there isn’t any recent surgical research for this type of cancer since its so rarely diagnosed.

If you have cancer, did the above statement sound familiar to you? Did you know most cancers are “rare” even though cancer itself is becoming more popular than ever? What is it at, one in 3 Americans now? You’d think the meaning of rare has changed as often as doctors use it to describe any patient’s cancer.

Anyone who thinks it is easy to make the choice to battle cancer AND corporate policies denying your rights to be treated humanely while you fight for your life and limb in a way that is recognized everywhere else in the world is naively mistaken or must not have concerns with personal finances. I’d give anything to focus my worries on health alone right now.

I read somewhere once that every middle class American is a health scare away from poverty. That’s the precise thought that came to my head when I found out about my diagnosis and it’s so true! What’s really messed up about it is a regular middle classed person has no possible way of anticipating something like this and absolutely does not think about their health until it fails. Our society takes our bodies for granted and acts as a subconscious reinforcement for us to do the same.

So policies are pushing me out, forcing me to work when the wellness retreat I was treated by included documentation to my case file saying “integrating work would be incredibly difficult if not impossible” for me to do using the method they offered at my home. So much for compassion, understanding and empathy. Traits my current position as a technical support representative require me to exhibit with every customer I’m denied when faced with real life.

Our societies priorities are so warped. I just wish there was a fix for our illusion of separation. The idea that another person’s suffering is not your own therefore should be no cause for your concern or attention keeps us so distant from each other. It’s ridiculous, selfish and unnatural when you take into account we are all connected in this experience. I want to change things but I struggle with the how part right now because money is being so worrisome. This sucks and I have no choice but to have faith that things will get better and I will be given the strength necessary to do the implausible.

I’m going to call my employer and see if they are willing to work with me to attempt the integration of part time work. That’s if they agree to part time and work from home only instead of firing me for not fulfilling my job duties as described, which just may be within their legal rights to do.

Unfortunately this is the time we live in. Corporations have iron clad policies making it legally possible to kick people when they are down and out and not only get away with it, but profit from it. I really don’t understand why the rational population allows such illogical behavior to run rampant and unchecked and I can’t wait to be in a position to do something about it.

I once heard someone say “don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today” and it kinda stuck with me. It made so much sense at the time, but I’ve noticed how hard that can actually be depending on what it is I’m putting off. An equally similar culinary rule of thumb is clean as you go.

I don’t think there’s much difference between working in a home kitchen and being in the back of a restaurant other than the fact that there’s usually less people to clean up after. Logically, it should’ve been simple to follow that rule and for me it was once I realized how much more work I created for myself when I didn’t.

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What I disliked most about cleaning is that it takes too long, especially when there’s stuck on muck that requires the use of elbow grease. When I clean as I go I avoid all of that! Plus, since I’m only working with vegetables I don’t have to worry about deadly cross contamination that occurs when I use meat! So I can get away with just rinsing things off most of the time. This makes cleaning much faster! The trick is, I have to do it immediately otherwise my dirty dishes get an opportunity to air-dry and create caked on messes that can only be removed with soaking or some brow sweat that I don’t enjoy parting with.

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Speaking of soaking…it’s a great cousin to clean as you go for dishes that have hard to clean messes like oatmeal. I just add water to the dish and set it aside until I’m ready to clean it. That way I’m not working too hard when I finally get around to it.

Since I use a rinse method to clean juicer pieces I like to deep clean the parts of my juicer at least once a week. There is a film that sticks to them and can breed harmful bacteria if left unchecked for too long. So to clean everything I fill the sink with water and add 1/4 cup bleach. I then submerge and soak all removable pieces for about 30 min. After that, I run everything through the dishwasher. I’m working with a Breville juicer right now and not a Norwalk, but I don’t see a reason why this deep cleaning method wouldn’t work on any juicer.

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