What happens after Remission
I want to be completely transparent with this topic and its only what I, myself have experienced...it is different to everyone but I really want to shed light on this. Ive been in Remission 2 times now, going onto my third, fingers crossed! So I've had a lot of time and experience to talk about this and want to share. Once again, make a coffee, get some snacks and I hope this helps you or someone you know.
We all deal with trauma and difficult times in our own way. For me, During my first time having cancer I was relativly positive about the whole thing and really took the time to get my life in check. I did that through food/diet, culling out negative things/people in my life, picking up hobbies that I let go of and for once in a very long time I paused and stood still. I took the opportunity to enjoy a slow paced life and really stop to smell the roses (highly recommend). So after 5 months of treatment I was done, no evidence of disease and told "see you in three months" by my doctor.
For a few days after this I felt so overwhelmed with gratitude, joy and pure bliss. After those few day I remember sitting on my couch and watching a show, then all of a sudden I thought to myself "what the f^$k just happened to me? What was that? Why did all that just happen to me?" It was like a switched flicked in my head and it happened to be the reality switch.
I spent a good few months trying to piece it all together and come to terms with what I had just gone through and witnessed my body go through. This took a lot of time of reflecting and learning how to close that chapter of my life. You feel like a tornado just wreaked havoc on your life and once the storm passes there is a tone of rubble and debris on the floor and you are left, on your own, to pick up the pieces.
For some people, the body goes into fight or flight mode during treatment and that was me. All my emotions were pushed aside for the time being because there was simply not enough room for it in that moment and I had to focus. Once I finished treatment my emotions came rushing in and hit me all at once. It was really difficult to deal with and to be honest, the emotional part was just as difficult as having cancer and doing treatment. You don't know what to do, where to turn, how to take steps forward. You're also still feeling vulnerable and fearful so you second guess everything and all your choices...Anything that existed in your pre cancer life you want to questions because you feel the pre-cancer life wasn't working and you want to eliminate the things that were bad for you.
The second time I had cancer, I decided to do things differently. I turned a lot to Eastern Medicine, I would meet with a councillor every week to discuss how things were going and talk about my feelings, which I found very hard but made the effort anyway. I didn't want to go into remission again being completely blind-sighted with emotions and trauma. I wanted to get that door opened as early as possible so I could deal with it in smaller batches. I really do recommend you do this. Its a great way to open up to someone, be vulnerable and get a different perspective on things. I used Eastern medicine to help with my zen, my state of mind. It calmed my mind a lot and made me build a better relationship with my mind, body and spirt.
My second remission was short lived as my stage 1 tumour had cleared up but shortly after it had started growing in other parts of my body and I was onto my third cancer diagnosis. I had no time to overcome the joy of being cancer free but I am so glad I spoke to someone regularly and incorporated Eastern Medicine because I felt like I had mentally grown so much and was ready to take on this third diagnosis. During my third time having Cancer I was incredibly unwell, as you can imagine the Cancer was getting smarter and more aggressive. Again, I felt I had no room for emotions, even after getting told I had 2 weeks to live I remember not really taking that in and here we are, months later and I still haven't acknowledged that part of my journey, I was unable to practise my Easter medicine as I was constantly fighting off infections and on extremely strong medication which would not mix well with herbal medicine.
I am still in my third diagnosis journey. But do not fear, I have been doing so well since I hit my all time low. I am doing so well in fact that I have no started Acupuncture again, I am taking on reflexology and kinesiology too. I have started speaking to my councillor again and I am trying to get my physical, mental and emotional state on the road to recovery. Im close to the finish line and Im going to need everything Ive got. Im a seasoned veteran when it comes to cancer and remission so I do know what Im up against once I go into remision (I know I haven't officially gone into remission, but I like to believe I have 🙂) and I know I will have some work ahead of me because what Ive just gone through and are still yet to go through was extremely tough, I will need to heal emotionally from it just as much as healing physically from it.
My advice is to gage what your mind needs. If you notice you are surpassingly chilled about the whole thing than your body has put your emotions to the side for now. Recognize it and ask yourself if you want to work on it as well as work on getting better. I know with my 3rd diagnosis I would eventually need to address my emotions but at that time I physically and emotionally didn't have the energy, I knew my body wasn't quite ready for it so I didn't push it and I listened out to when I was ready to reach out for help. If you're feeling like you're overwhelmed with emotions then you need to get onto it urgently. I would not sit on it and wait till it all settles in. It can make a huge difference to your recovery when you have a calm, clear and focused mind. Speaking to someone (non-family or friend member) will have huge benefits in your journey through treatment and with what happens after.
If you ever feel confused or want to know more about this, please feel free to reach out to me. I find it helps to speak with someone thats been there, done that. And I've done 'that' a few times now heheh.
I wish you all good health and a healthy mind too!
The Sana Soul.