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Gutsy Cancer Patient Sells Her Oncologist On Imagery

01 Feb

We got so many inspiring emails from the people answering our request for information about their cancer experiences.  This stage 4 lung cancer patient didn’t preach to her oncologist – she just won him over by her dazzling example.  I’ve always believed in this method of persuasion – simply become a walking commercial for what you believe in!  It can’t be beat!  (Credit also goes to her doc, who proved himself to be flexible, open and wise – wise enough to let himself learn from this remarkable woman!)
Please read on – This is Jean:

My oncologist had no idea of, nor was interested in hearing about anything complementary or alternative. He poo-pooed everthing I brought up about mind/body, alternative and complementary medicine and diet. As soon as I got my diagnosis of stage 4 lung cancer (never smoked), I started searching. I set up my acupuncture visits for before each chemo. I bought as many books as I could find about surviving cancer.

In one book, Remarkable Recovery, it was interesting to see that all those people who had those remarkable recoveries had many things in common: an incredible will to live, willingness to change, and some spiritual or mental realization.

I vowed from the first day to embrace the beast and get past this. I went to a hypnotherapist and had her make me a personalized tape about relaxation and targeting my particular cancer. I downloaded your Peaceful Perspective and loved it so much I also got the Chemo, General Wellness and Dr. Emmett Miller’s Chemo and played them, not only when I was having chemo, but when I was finished as well, and I pictured that chemo flowing thru my body into those cells for days afterward.

I just kept pursuing it with my oncologist (I think he must have dreaded my appointments) and told him all that I was doing.  I think he could obviously see the difference in how I was taking chemo, compared to other patients, and how good I felt mentally and physically, because he began to ask me at each appointment if I was still using guided imagery and acupuncture.  By my 6th chemo, he told me I had changed his mind about a lot of things, and to keep doing exactly as I was. He even bought the book Anti-Cancer, A New Way of Life, because I told him he should.  He liked it and thanked me.  I think they simply have tunnel vision about their own particular speciality, which is encouraged by western medicine.

What I loved about my personal tape is that the therapist spent a little more time on having me picture the future and how I would look and feel and encouraged me to imagine myself healthy and much older, being with everyone I love.

I feel what is needed is a CD that addresses post chemo, this is a frightening time for me, turned loose, with little advice and told see you at your next scan. I guess I would like a CD that would relax me and then suggest all that my mind and body can do to keep my cancer stable or push it toward remission - something to remind those Killer cells to keep working for me.

I tell everyone I know, with and without cancer, how much guided imagery has helped me. Whether I live or die, I am peaceful, serene and hopeful.

Thank you, Jean G.


Belleruth Naparstek

Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award