Here I am 17 months out from being diagnosed with breast cancer, and most people when they see me say I look great, and seem to be doing great.
Which I am, thank God, I am.
But what most don’t understand is the constant mind battle that takes place from the moment you are diagnosed. This battle will stay with me forever.
I am not sure if other cancer warriors deal with this particular battle, but it is very very very difficult for me.
I walk around absolutely terrified of cancer returning. I feel very out of control and the only control I feel I can have is by what I eat, what I surround myself with, and what is around my children. I take things very personally now when it comes to using toxic chemicals or eating sugary foods. I know… it seems absurd, but when someone consciously chooses something that has a carcinogen in it or an ingredient that has been known to be harmful to the body… I take it personally. I feel like I get slapped across the face and betrayed.
“Don’t they know what I have been through?” my inner self asks. “Did they see me lose my hair? Did they see me hooked up to machines receiving chemo infusions? Did they see all my surgeries? Did they know I had no genetic correlation? Did they know I had no family history of cancer?” All these thoughts run through my head.
Most recently, I had a full meltdown at the grocery store because of the deodorant my husband wanted to pick out. Y’all… I was crying in the store. I felt so angry and hurt that he would choose a product that had fragrance in it. He was looking at me like I was crazypants. I was so upset he wouldn’t choose a better option.
But ya know what? I can’t control his life. I can’t control everything he does, and one day… (I am cringing and my stomach is tightening) I won’t be able to control what my daughters choose either.
So where do I draw the line? Where do I let go and let God? Where do I decide that I am doing my very best, to live the very best and I just need to relax? My days are already numbered, regardless of my cancer diagnosis… so what am I so stressed out about.
I mean God did give us brains to make smart decisions, and he talks in the bible about treating our bodies well. They are our temple.
But at some point, I have got to just have faith, trust in Him and let go.
This is a very big struggle within me right now. I feel it at birthday parties where cake is served with a gazillion grams of sugar in it, I feel it when I walk into a bathroom at a friend’s house who is burning a scented candle, I feel it when I see my mom buy cinnamon rolls with yellow 5 and red 40 in them (yes, I made her take them back). Y’all it is serious problem.
I hope that my story will help stimulate change. I hope people appreciate the information I put out there…because I care. I 100% want to prevent anyone else from going through what I am going through.
I am 100% positive my cancer came from my environment. From what exactly? I don’t know. And the kicker is, I was pretty darn healthy. But I sure did burn scented candles every chance I got, I sure did indulge on sweets sometimes, I sure did take birth control for 11 years, I sure did use some of the cheapest, aromatic lotions and body washes the grocery store shelves offered.
But somewhere I have to draw the line. One of my best friends told me plain and simple, “Lauren people just don’t get it unless they have cancer.” And she’s right, unfortunately. Unless you are absolutely rocked, it is hard to change your lifestyle. But I pray every day that I motivate change.
And every day, I work on being grateful, being present, and letting go to let God.