I could add many words here about western medicine and young doctors who are quick on the diagnosis trigger. I am sure we would have a wild bashing fest in the commentary section, but this story is about something else.
This story is about well meaning, meditating, channeling, healing, releasing, aura cleansing human beings who are—well— quick on the diagnosis trigger.
It is an awfully vulnerable place to be, faced with the prospect of a serious disease and a possible (way to) early death. I was moving as a vast unknown, each breath was a mystery. A miracle. My body throbbing in willingness, innocent, loyal like a dog. It took a tremendous sensitivity to tune into its needs, and to navigate through choices I all of a sudden was expected to be qualified to make. I could literally not do this alone. I was in need.
To be in need is something I often resist. Maybe you do, too. Growing up in Norway, I was shaped in the I-can-do-it-all-on-my-own woman mold. It is through my practice in the Women’s Temple I have become more comfortable with the softness and availability that opens up when I am in need. Now I was in need more than I had ever been; it was an experience of being ripped open.
Straight into that opening my women’s network floated in with its brave heart, hips to lean on and practical hands. God I love these women. My husband, although sometimes trembling with fear, was a shining lion-heart-warrior through it all.
I was open, the world was open. Wide, wide open.
It was in this context that the before mentioned New Age well-meaning people, now turned experts of cancer, came marching in.
My intention for writing this next part is not to make anyone wrong. It is simply an attempt to perhaps bring some understanding of how it feels to be sick and on the receiving end of the surprisingly linear and unbending black/white New Age theory of cause and effect.
Turns out there is a vast number of people considering themselves an expert on cancer, and they are not afraid to tell you the truth about why you have it. There were many, many voices, each one having a very different theory, all expressed with a baffling certainty.
There was a common thread though, and that was that in order to get cancer (“…but wait, I am not even sure that it is cancer?!”), I must have done something terribly wrong. The most popular themes had to do with suppression of feelings, of karma and about the fact that I did not yet have children.
Remember, I was in a place of not knowing anything – I was OPEN. So, of course, I checked within for any denial. I tried to express the suppressed roar in my organs, I tried to connect with past lives and parallel universes and with my body’s hidden bitterness of not having a child. Through it all, my internal experience of my body and what it was going through was not anything like what I was told.
My experience was not along a linear cause and effect track at all. I could not even relate to that model. I experienced something more multidimensional. It was a somatic experience of how the patience and health of both body and earth are heavily tested, every single day. Influences from the past and the future and from the radio waves and of food and of how my body is an inseparable part of this wild aching world. Solid in one moment, gone the next.
It was an experience of awe, of great vulnerability and blessed nano glimpses of a bird’s eye view showing me the emptiness at the root of it all. No meaning, no fancy theory of perfection. Just the most ordinary and raw and magnificent isness. Each breath a miracle. The smell of my lover’s skin, holy.
At last I became fiercely protective of my body and its process. I was returning projections back to sender. Enough.
It turned out that the lump was benign; it had been there since I was born (sweet, sweet body). It turned out this whole experience was the greatest gift on more levels that I can explain here. It turned out well.
My prayer is for a little bit of humbleness. May we remember that we are seeing this vast mystery from an ant’s eye view. That whenever we are absolutely certain about someone else’s path…dear Goddess…please don’t crush us under your celestial pinky toe, but please please please do ring the warning chimes.
And please open us.
Open us all the way into you.
PS: I did work with three remarkable healers: Sariah Michaels, Master Chuny Lin, and Deidre Hade, all of them masters in their field, all of them humble in calling forth the inherent wisdom already in the body. I recommend them all.
PSS: This latest video from Eve Ensler touched me. “Suddenly my Body”. About cancer, body, earth and genuine healing: