The Completion of Purpose
Cancer—it is not something that someone as young and healthy as me normally worries about. But what if I was diagnosed with cancer and told that I had only a year or so to live? Would I keep fighting? How would I fight for more? What changes in my life—from the standpoints of health, psychological state, and action—would I take? I am not someone who fears death for what’s beyond it—my beliefs produced a peace that took its hold in me long ago. Rather, I fear the thought of dying before I’ve made some mark in life. I’m a person who believes we choose how meaningful our lives become. Consequently, if I knew I had only a little time left, I’d do everything to maximize that time, while working to leave something behind.
For sake of argument, let us say that, like Rhio O’Conner—a man who fought to keep his life and surpassed the time he was supposed to live by years—I have been diagnosed with mesothelioma. Let us say that a doctor, after performing some form of thoroscopy, biopsy, or other diagnostic process has told me that tumors growing on the lining of my lungs will gradually spread, press down on my lungs and eventually spread to the rest of my body (Mesothelioma). No doubt I would be shocked at first, but after recovering from the initial shock, what routes would I take?
To begin with, I would first consult my regular doctor. We would work together to look into what specialists in this field would recommend. Then, after talking to what specialist we had chosen to see, I would decide what, if any, conventional cancer treatments I would undergo. I personally would try to avoid chemo. There is some concern that it can actually aid in the spreading of cancerous cells throughout one’s body (Alternative Cancer Treatments). Also, it would severely weaken me, and, consequently, my ability to keep fighting. I would however, consider chemo drugs that, instead of killing of things in my body, prevent the growth of cancerous cells—ALIMTA for instance. As for radiation, I’d research it further though I’d be cautious about it’s use (Oncol). Using radiation—something known to cause cancer—to kill cancer seems rather paradoxical. However, newer forms of radiotherapy have grown better at targeting specific parts of one’s body in order to avoid damage elsewhere. Surgery is something I would be open to. Mesothelioma can cause a buildup of liquids, cancerous cells, and diseased cells in one’s body. Frankly, removing those to get rid of pressure on my lungs and at least remove some of the cancerous cells is something I’m more than open to (Mesothelioma).
As for alternative methods, or things I’d look into on the side, firstly, I’d look into altering my diet. A healthy body can create an environment less conducive to the spread of cancer. I’d be willing to cut all forms of meat out of my diet on the condition that my cancer wasn’t having the symptom of weight loss. I’d also remove coffee and any other thing giving my blood a more acidic PH. I’d eat far more vegetables—especially green leafy ones containing high fiber. I’d take vitamin supplements and make sure my body was getting all the nutrients it needed. Also, I’d exercise far more to keep my blood flowing and my body working. Furthermore, I know a number of friends and family members who are interested in muscle testing and in what may be referred to as Behavioral Kinesiology (Cancer Tutor). This is a concept that is based on the idea that various supplements and nutrients put off a form of electric signature. When those supplements are near one’s body, one’s body picks up on it. Consequently, when one undergoes a muscle test, one reacts differently. For instance, if I hold out my arm and try to keep it upraised, someone may succeed or fail at pushing that arm based on how my body is reacting to the nearby supplement.
Past various medical efforts and changes in lifestyle, it is key that I remain optimistic and not simply give up. Depression and stress of any kind are detrimental to one’s health. Laughter and happiness are known to have the preferred effect (Cancer Tutor). Keeping an upbeat attitude during trying times will aid my health, and make what time I have left enjoyable.
Finally, while I will not simply give up my life, recognizing that its end is going to be far sooner than I intended, my actions in life will change dramatically. Firstly, I want to leave something behind that I may be remembered and have made a positive mark on this world. I would seek to compile my poetry and writing into one good volume. I would write and write and write in hopes that I could create a good work before I pass as I did everything I could to give myself as much time to create this final creation as possible. Also, I would spend as much time with family and friends as possible since I’d be departing from them. Finally, I’d like to travel to some other country. I’d make an effort to do that early on before my health deteriorates beyond where I can enjoy myself. Throughout all of this, that sense of purpose that runs in me would give that extra fight to my desire to stay around and hopefully, when it came time to go, after doing all I could to keep myself alive, I would feel that I completed something purposeful in my life.
Mesothelioma. Mesothelioma.ory 11/19/09. 2/24/10.
Oncol, J Clin. What is AlITMA. ALITMA Pemetrexed. 2009. 2/24/10.
Cancer Tutor. Independent Cancer Research Foundation, Inc. 2/24/10.
Alternative Cancer Treatments, Comparison and Testing. Alternative.us. 2/24/10.