My Healing from Breast Cancer by Dr. Barbara Joseph

Dr. Barbara is a woman, mother, medical doctor and breast cancer survivor. Let us quote what she wrote in the Introduction of her book.

  • After the initial shockwaves of my cancer diagnosis subsided, I began to truly live for the first time in my life. Deep inside I knew it was the beginning of a journey into the unexplored parts of my soul. 
  • My journey began … as I opened to my long-buried emotions … years of unexpressed anger fueled its growth. 
  • I recovered from Stage 3 breast cancer using a combination of conventional medical care and complementary modalities. The conventional care included six months of  chemotherapy (cytoxan, 5-FU and novantrone) before my lumpectomy … followed by radiotherapy and an additional three months of chemotherapy followed by surgery, until my body finally rebelled and said NO MORE.
  • The complementary modalities I used included counseling, support group therapy, nutritional education (sorely lacking from my medical training), an organic whole foods plant-based nondairy diet, supplements, visualization, affirmation, meditation and prayer, selected readings, workshops, exercise and unconditional self-love.
  • Healing is a process which I actively take part in on a daily basis. I attribute my ability to go through the conventional treatments … to be a result of the complementary approaches that I made use of then and continue to utilize today.
  • How many of you feel grateful? (For getting cancer? You must be joking??)
  • It is through our pain and our struggles that our lives ever deepen. Breast cancer was the opportunity to turn my life around … it brought up the issues of my lifetime, the reality of my mortality, the unexpressed grief of my childhood and the emptiness of our techno-crazed world … breast cancer brought into focus … the gap between the pharmaceutical bandaids that I utilized as a practising obstestrician-gynecologist and what my patients and I were really seeking. 
  • I realised now how profoundly confused women are about the crisis of breast cancer. We need to exercise our right to make informed choices with the help but not the DOMINANCE OF HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS. We need to acknowledge the limitations of conventional medicine without giving up the best it has to offer. 
  • The lack of clear cut answers in my own treatment decisions and the dismal cure rate gave me the incentive to make our own choices. 
  • I have searched for the truth … I’ve discovered that much of the helpful data I’ve found is not really new but readily accessible information that has been either DOWNPLAYED or IGNORED by the medical profession. 
  • I know that for learning to take place there has to be readiness. For me the pain of a breast cancer diagnosis opened my eyes and set the stage for my own readiness. 
  • I have come to become aware that there is no greater way to impact the health of the planet than through our daily food choices. We have all been profoundly affected by our early education (ha, eat more meat, drink milk, take eggs, etc, etc.) It is hard to put aside these out-dated beliefs and to find new ones to put in their place. It is difficult to associate the foods that we grew up with … with the growing epidemic of breast cancer. Today’s convenience foods may ultimately not be very convenient. We cannot continue to eat devitalized, contaminated foods and expect to maintain our health and vitality. 
  • The animals that provide the standard American diet live in abnormally close quarters and are pumped up with antibiotics to both treat and prevent infections. We ingest these antibiotics as we ingest these animals. And if that isn’t bad enough, hormones are now injected into cattle (also poultry, pigs, etc) either to increase milk production or to increase the weight of the soon-to-be-slaughtered animals for no other reason than TO ADD TO PROFITS. Research shows that Bovine Growth Hormone (BGH) may very well increase the risk of breast cancer. 
  • Pesticides are found in the breast milk of women with breast cancer in higher levels than in women without cancer. Toxic pesticides outlawed in this country (USA) are being sold to third-world nations (so, Malaysia may well be the dumping ground!) … this is not new information. But we do need to hear it. 
  • Medicine has been run too long … by the model that says: WE can find a cure for breast cancer: let’s just look a little deeper into the cells. This MECHANISTIC MODEL IS SERIOUSLY FLAWED. In this model, breast cancer needs only to be eradicated; however for true healing to take place the patient must be transformed … breast cancer is a different disease in every woman. Medicine forgets that breast cancer mirrors our emotional lives… TRUE HEALING MUST ADDRESS THESE ISSUES. 
  • Mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of breast cancer are no less important than the physical. The physical is only one dimension of our complex reality…We each need to find balance in the mind, heart and spirit as well as in our body and to learn what areas need to be looked into … 
  • Breast cancer can be the vehicle that transforms pain into compassion. Allowing me to feel the compassion flow was the healing. As I continue to develop this compassionate self-acceptance, the pain of my childhood and my present life is easier to bear and the anger that hides the pain continues to dissolve. 
  • We all have the power to lead healthier lives – it is simply a matter of choice. We must all do our personal work. 
  • The emotions that prevent us from making the healthier choices must be processed and healed over time. 
  • If we approach the pain in our lives with an open heart, the work of caring ourselves deeply will lead us to … our healing abilities.
  • Before my diagnosis I was disconnected from my inner wisdom. (Now Dr. Barbara knows that) it was okay to trust my intuitions regarding all phases of … my entire breast cancer experience. I sensed that we often can’t see the full picture, that we see what we need to see and must trust the rest. What a relief, I don’t have to know everything! 
  • Intellectually, we can’t always know the reasons. Scientific PROOF IS A MISNOMER. We are all BRAINWASHED to some extent in this culture about the power of scientific studies, all the while knowing that statistics CAN BE MANIPULATED TO PROVE JUST ABOUT ANYTHING. 
  • Throughout the 1980s the Cancer and Steriod Hormones Study (CASH) based in Atlanta published analyses that found no excess risk of breast cancer regardless of the age of exposure to birth control pills. A few years later reanalyses turned around the reassuring CASH studies, supporting a link between oral contraceptives and breast cancer in younger women. (Now, the same story is repeated. This time it is with HRT … and tamoxifen (the proven cancer-causing drug!!! You buy that??). 
  • I believe that intuition is far more powerful than intellect. 
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