Thursday, 28 December 2017

Thoughts about this cancer thing

I have thought about Reginald Mitchell who designed the famous WWII fighter, the Spitfire, that conquered the Luftwaffe's famous Messerschmitt Bf109 in the Battle of Britain. The rest, as they say, is history!

Mitchell was diagnosed with cancer in 1933. Rather than take it easy at doctor's orders he threw himself into the design and prototype construction of the Spitfire. He died in June 1937. But shortly before that, he would be seen beside the aerodrome, watching prototypes of the Spitfire being put through their paces. It seems that his commitment to develop that great airplane extended his life by a two or three of years, giving him great satisfaction.

Below is some free verse, some of it original, and some of it quoted from the Bible, to talk about the fear, hope, and love aspects of cancer recovery.

This cancer thing 
(with some quotes)


“i’m surprised
you’re still alive –
you could be dead
in five
or ten
the surgeon said
that was before i nearly died
and before i woke up
(nearly) dead

The monster within
you are sinister
a hide-and-seek now-you-see-it-now-you-don’t monster –
you are evil incarnate
you are cold grey iron – lurking – hiding
in your face there is darkness and dismay and
the cold grey eyes and pale bloodless skin of death
your hair is the colour of cremation’s fire
you wear a long black cloak – perhaps to smother each victim
neither male or female –
you are outside of time and space in this universe.

i must embrace my illness
as my best friend
who will lead me
into happiness
and joy

"there is hope of a tree
if it be cut down
that it will sprout again
and that the tender branch thereof
will not cease
though the root thereof wax old in the earth
and the stock thereof die in the ground
yet through the scent of water it will bud
and bring forth boughs" 

"there is no fear in love;
but perfect love casts out fear –
fear has torment –
he that fears
is not made perfect in love"

"God has not given us
the spirit of fear –
but of power
and of love
and of a sound mind"

"a new commandment i give unto you –
that you love one another –
as i have loved you
that you also love
one another"

I am taking radiation to smash the tumours on not two, but three, locations on my spine. Two of them are at both ends, at my tailbone and at the base of my skull. the other is in the middle of my back. This latter one has given me no pain at all and without the CT scan I would have no idea there was a problem. I will be going home from Edmonton to Inuvik on January 6, 2018. The Cross Cancer Institute people are very proficient and very caring, which provides extra support and hope for the future.

Monday, 25 December 2017

The war is on against the invisible and quiet monster

I am sorry to take so long to update my story. It took 6 weeks for Cross Cancer to make treatment decisions, along with an intervention from my family doctor in Inuvik. Then on Thursday December 15 some phone calls confirmed that I would have a consult for radiation on Wednesday the 20th and radiation treatments of modest radiation strength on Dec 21 and 22, and then again after Xmas on Dec 27,28 and 29. So Sandra and I flew to Edmonton from Inuvik on Dec 17, to allow time to rest up before the radiation ordeal.

As I believe I have mentioned before, metastatic renal carcinoma does not respond well to chemotherapy, and surgery is not a good option I found after discussions with the surgeon, because of the position of the new tumours very near the L1 lumbar and theS2&S3 sacrum vertebrae with very close proximity to the spinal chord. So now I have had two radiation treatments on Dec 21 and 22, which left me woozy, tired and somewhat achy.

I also have had a new diagnostic CT Scan in my neck and head area, because of a suspicion I have about some new headaches and neck pains that should not be there. It may be my spinal cord further down telling me about things not being well down there, or it may be evidence of another tumour at the top of my spine. We shall find out this week when I talk to the oncologist at Cross Cancer again. 

Stage 4 renal carcinoma is more deadly than I originally thought. The survival rate of 8% at 5 years is for people that have had a cancerous kidney removed but with little or no metastatic growth of tumours at the time of the operation. When the cancer is at Stage 4 with metastatic growths everywhere at the time of the kidney removal the survival is usually only a few months, according to the medical information that I have been able to find. The fact that I have reached more than 2 years is still a miracle.

We came to Saskatoon the other day in our rented car to spend Christmas with Lynn and Derrick, and Sandra's sister Janice and family in North Battleford, and will wend our way back to Edmonton by tomorrow Boxing Day. The warm weather has taken a break and the temperature has dropped to -29C this morning in Saskatoon.

So my determination as 2017 draws to a close is a quotation from Winston Churchill during the dark hours of WWII:

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts."

And I continue to meditate on the importance of joy. There is a short 6-verse chapter in the book of Isaiah in the Bible, chapter 12, that I really love. It tells me how important are strength, singing, the process of becoming, and joy to bring salvation. Wishing you all comfort and joy this holiday season.

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Designing a new suit of armour

We decided to cancel our wonderful 1.5 years-in-the-planning cruise on the Danube River. We were supposed to leave Inuvik tomorrow. Which means we will miss the highlight of visiting with Yvonne's parents in Stuttgart. And other things, like visiting the Holocaust memorial at Dachau. Anyway, after reading the radiology report in detail, after conferring with best friends about this, as well as the oncologist's somewhat worrying call Friday afternoon, we had to make the decision. And as a dyed-in-the-wool Scot it is heartbreaking to cancel a prepaid cruise and airfare holiday.

I believe that we have begun full awareness and treatment soon enough to beat this thing. To uncloak the monster and strike it dead.

I am humbled and joyous to read all of the good wishes that have come to me from far corners of the world: from Saudi Arabia, from UK, from USA, from Vietnam, and many places in my home and native land. I am convinced that joy is a prerequisite to healing, so let God's will be done. Joy, and what happens without it, is one focus of my 2014 poetry book Pine Cones and Small Stones: Poems for Warming in a Cold Climate. I still have several copies of the book, for which the publication was generously supported by the NWT Arts Council. My dear cousin Karen in California, who succumbed to the same renal carcinoma that I have almost two months ago, designed the cover. If you drop me a line with your mailing address at I will gladly send you a copy.

Well, time to try another phone call to Cross Cancer Institute re my first appointment for next steps. I am hopeful that new immunotherapies will boost my immune system to destroy THE THING. Also, I have a telephone consult booked with Dr Redvers about increasing Iscador strength tomorrow afternoon at 4:15.

Sunday, 12 November 2017

The answer is - no! The Stage 4 Renal Carcinoma is alive

Well, where to start, I got a rude awakening this time. The CT scan last week in Yellowknife showed for the first time that three small nodules in the lower left lobe of my lungs are slowly growing; one has grown from 6mm to 8mm. Lymph nodes in my chest have grown too, whereas they had been slowly shrinking for most of the past two years, showing that my immune system is working overtime fighting something, probably cancer. Of greater worry is that cancerous activity is apparentlty happening in the posterior region of the L1 vertebra in the lumbar region of my back and also something thought to be cancer going on at the base of the spine, where I have had some osteoarthritis in the past. No pain though. Anyway, these new developments are certainly scary.

I have a HELP request in to Dr Nicole Redvers about possibly increasing my Iscador (extract from mistletoe)strength. I am now on Series 2 whereas I could upgrade to Series 3 perhaps. Everything I read about Iscador indicates it helps to shrink tumours and make them disappear.

The good news is that the cancer is moving slowly at this point and hopefully more subject to treatment. The oncologists at Cross Cancer in Edmonton are talking about using a new immunotherapy that is not drug based to target cancer cells in tumours. This new treatment has been successful in other types of cancer. This treatment may start soon.

All this in the face of a planned trip leaving this coming Wednesday the 15th for Munich, then by train to visit friends in Stuttgart, Germany, visit Dachau etc. Then to Budapest to start the Danube River cruise with 6 other Inuvikites for a week ending up at Nuremburg. Then back to Ottawa to visit Shauna and kids. We have one day in Edmonton on the way back, on December 05, where I could meet with Cross Cancer perhaps if required.

One of my books read this past summer was The Write Prescription: Telling Your Story to Live With and Beyond Illness, by Judith Hannon. She gave many writing exercises, including one where we were asked to write to describe the disease we were challenged with, give it a name, and talk to it like a living thing. So I did that with cancer, and here is the result, at least the part that is printable here!:
"Cancer, you are a sinister hide-and-seek now-you-see-it-now-you-don’t monster. You are evil incarnate. You are cold grey iron. Lurking. Hiding. In your face there is darkness and dismay. Your face has the cold grey eyes and pale bloodless skin of death. Your hair is the colour of cremation’s fire. You wear a long black cloak, perhaps to smother each victim. Neither male or female, you are outside of time and space in this universe."
I still believe that an attitude of gratitude with love and joy will help to defeat the thing. In the meantime I will continue to work on my cancer recovery book, which might help other cancer sufferers deal with their challenges. 

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Have I walked away from Stage 4 Kidney Cancer?

Well, it is nearly two years (23 months) since my diagnosis by Dr Adrian Fairey of Stage 4 Renal Cell Carcinoma, and I am feeling very well. This week is another critical one, because I go to Yellowknife for another CT scan (Tuesday, November 07) and follow-up with an oncologist from Cross Cancer Institute from Edmonton (Thursday, November 09).

If I can I will send a short follow up post from the hotel in Yellowknife on Thursday evening November 09.

I have written an outline for my cancer recovery book Waking up (nearly) dead. I believe the book is very important now. Six weeks ago I lost my dear cousin Karen from the same disease, and that has reminded me of the 8%/5year rule in the stats. Only 8% of us who have been operated on for kidney cancer will make the 5 year mark following diagnosis or operation. That is not a morbid thought, it is a very realistic one. Now this last week, I lost another dear friend, Eric H, from lung cancer. He was about 15 years younger than me, and the cancer was too advanced at diagnosis I believe for immunotherapy drugs or radiation treatment to be effective.

And why should immunotherapy not include nutritive ways of increasing immune response? Why has nearly no research money been put into the importance of nutrition, minerals like zinc that improve the health of the thymus to produce healthy T-Cells, and natural therapies like mistletoe injections, which are proven in accepted medical research to improve quality of life for some cancer sufferers who are experiencing normal chemotherapy and/or radiation treatments. And my thesis is that in cases where the primary tumour(s) can be removed by surgery, Iscador injections (mistletoe from oak) can cause cancerous tumours to shrink and/or disappear. I am convinced that has happened in my case.

More news Thursday or next weekend after my CT scan and oncology consultation.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

The immune system and medical Information on the Internet

It looks like we will have the privilege of staying in this very comfortable home at 34 Franklin Road in Inuvik for a long time yet. And Sandra's work is likely to keep us here for another four to five years.

A lot of this blog entry is a repeat. I have done that on purpose. When trained to do presentations I have often been told: “Tell them what you are going to tell them, then tell them, then tell them what you told them!” I don’t think it is possible to repeat too often any information that may lead to cancer recovery in our human bodies.

I recently received a pdf of a research paper from a colleague showing that low dose radiation boosts the immune system. He also sent me a copy of a paper with evidence that the low dose radiation of CT scans can boost the immune system to attack cancer in our bodies. One lesson learned here, is that low dose radiation prevents and reduces cancer. Low dose radiation is a benefit. It does not, repeat NOT, cause cancer.

Boosting the immune system is so very important. I am a bit disappointed in the paper only because it does not mention any emphasis on nutrition to boost the immune system. For example, a high dose of sugar cuts down the effectiveness of the immune system for hours, making the immune system incapable of fighting cancer cells. Also, the importance of taking additional zinc for example, for thymus health, especially as we grow older, since that is where T-cells come from. And we need T-cells to attack cancer cells and tumours. As you will note from this blog, I talk a lot about nutrition and ways to keep the immune system healthy.

Although I am still considered to have Stage 4 Clear Cell Renal Carcinoma, I have not had to have radiation or chemotherapy or drug-based immunotherapy. I have a dear cousin who passed away just days ago in California, ten years younger than me, who had the same disease, but who relied only on oncologist’s recommendations of various chemotherapies and radiation. Although I still have enlarged lymph nodes, no cancerous tumours are evident anywhere. They have disappeared from my lungs and abdomen. I also have great respect for mistletoe extracts developed in Germany. I inject myself with a regimen of Iscador three times a week (from mistletoe grown on oak trees), and will for the rest of my life. My one remaining kidney is not top notch, but it is stable and keeping me healthy.

A friend in Sherwood Park, Alberta is recovering from pancreatic cancer where surgery has not been an option. The various chemotherapy and radiation approaches are complemented by several natural therapies, including mistletoe derivative injections (mistletoe grown on apple trees in this case). As the medical literature confirms, the mistletoe injections reduce the nasty side effects of the chemotherapy. His weight is now stable, and his appetite is sustained.

The main thing about using the Internet for factual and useful information of a medical treatment nature is knowing what to search for and how best to do that. There are many useful data bases, and search engines starting with Google Scholar. Medical practitioners have their own special databases. First and foremost I ask the advice of qualified medical practitioners, naturopathic doctors, and nutritionists, so that I know what to search for to give me meaningful results.

Long before my cancer operation, I owed my blood pressure lowering to my spouse Sandra’s frantic searching of the Internet to lower my blood pressure so that my left hip operation could safely take place. Sandra found a link between sugar and blood pressure. I was on two blood pressure pills prescribed by our family doctor, walking 7 km/da 6 to 7 days a week, and trying to eat more veggies and so on. But my blood pressure was still in the 170s over 100s. Oh yes, and my cholesterol was high and my cholesterol meds were not working. Three weeks after cutting all refined sugar out of my diet I was down to 140/85 or so, and my cholesterol had returned to normal. At that point I swore off blood pressure pills and cholesterol medication and put my trust in nutrition. The Internet was the source of this vital life altering information. So now to this day, after my Stage 4 renal carcinoma operation and in recovery my blood pressure is down around 118/75 with no b.p. medication at all!

Since that time, both my nutritionist and my naturopathic doctor, who have literally saved my life as a cancer survivor, agree that sugar is the primary culprit to a broad range of health problems, including of course diabetes, but also blood pressure and cancer, to name a few. Sugar feeds cancer cells, and our immune systems are knocked senseless for a few hours every time we take a major sugar hit, so during those hours, our immune system is not in any condition to search and destroy cancer cells.

The emphasis on cancer drugs is absolutely pervasive in our medical systems. The March 17 2017 issue of the international journal Science, had approximately 30 pages devoted to Frontiers in cancer therapy. Great emphasis is placed on immunotherapy from a drug-based perspective. No mention is made whatsoever to special aspects of nutrition or natural therapies to increase the effectiveness of the immune system. This is unlikely to change in the future. I cannot imagine major food companies who depend upon sugar and carbohydrate-based foods for their profits investing millions in cancer recovery.

We all need to take responsibility for our own health and wellbeing, and medical practitioners, including specialists, are only part of that equation. Sometimes our very survival depends on help from outside the conventional medical system.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

The "yet" factor

Here it is September 19. Two days ago, September 17, Britain was celebrating the Battle of Britain turning point of WWII, and I was celebrating my 77th Birthday. For some reason that was a momentous occasion - primarily because I AM ALIVE going on two years soon in cancer recovery.

I just finished reading a Young Adult novel by John Green, The Fault in our Stars, about a 17-year old teenager with cancer. It illustrates so well the mixed feelings, the fear, the fleeting joys, and the family during and after, when terminal cancer strikes. I cried my way through it, because, although definitely a work of fiction, it is so true to life with cancer. And it took me out of my recent complacency by reminding me of the "yet" factor.

When things are going well, and cancer seems nowhere near, it is so easy to be complacent, and forget diet, forget exercise, forget natural healing processes at work. At one point in The Fault in our Stars the oncology team reviewing Hazel's recovery process argue about next steps. One oncologist remarks, "we know from other patients that most tumors eventually evolve a way to grow in spite of [a chemotherapy drug], but if that were the case, we'd see tumor growth on the scans, which we don't see. So it's not that yet." And during my first follow-up at Cross Cancer in Edmonton about two months after the operation in December 2015, the head oncologist mused out loud that since my cancer had not grown, in fact seemed noticeably smaller, the new immunotherapy drug they were planning to prescribe for me would not be necessary yet. There it is again, the YET factor.

But the important thing about the yet factor is that it has mobilized me anew to live one day at a time and be truly thankful for the love of the One who has enabled me to experience the mystery and the miracle of cancer recovery, at least for now. And to get back on track and stop cheating by eating sugar-based food and quickly putting that out of my mind, or by overloading on chemical laden prepared foods and meats and carb-only fast foods. So it is back on track for me.

I also wanted to mention again, as I talked about in my last post, that prolonged cancer operations, where the patient nears death, but then continues in life, can alter the way the mind works. This happened to me in many ways, as I mentioned. Also, if you are interested there are two other books I will mention. There is Wondering Who You Are, a memoir by Sonya Lea that highlights the complete personality change of her husband that became almost impossible to live with, because she was faced with the thoughts and feelings of "this is not the man I married." And, then there is Anita Moorjani's memoir, Dying to be me: My journey from Cancer, to Near Death, to True Healing where Anita experienced profound changes in thought after her near death experience and cancer-free recovery and came to truly believe in the heaven of eternity.

I am truly excited to write about my joy in cancer recovery. I am spending two full days per week now as my writing goal. I want to finish my recovery book by December 6, 2017, the second anniversary of my life-threatening 6-hour kidney cancer operation where my Stage 4 Clear Cell Renal Carcinoma was confirmed.

May your week be one of joy and gratitude for each day.

Monday, 4 September 2017

A summer in my healing journey

I am a writer. So -- if I am a writer, where is the evidence? Certainly not on my blog obviously. I must try to correct that. I have had a wonderful summer. Sandra was able to take 7 weeks away from work, so we travelled far and wide - Edmonton/Sherwood Park (Alberta), North Battleford/Chuchbridge (Saskatchewan), Toronto/Ottawa (Ontario), Chicago/Seneca (Illinois), Hayward (Wisconsin). We had a very uplifting 4-day spiritual retreat near Seneca. We spent a weekend at a cabin on the lake near Hayward in Wisconsin and kid-sat two wonderful precocious 8-year old girls, Madison and Lillian. They were the Rug Rats and we Sandra and I were dubbed Tickle Monsters! Unfortunately, the photos I took on my cell are too big for me to post on this blog and I don't have any way of making them smaller. One photo shows Sandra and the two girls during our 6-mile (10km) walk with the two girls one afternoon.

My last CT scan showed no cancer, but a few lymph nodes are still enlarged, which to me means that my immune system is still fighting something at the cellular level. But my health is just fine as far as we can tell. My one kidney is doing fine.

I may have mentioned that my depression went away after my 6-hour cancer operation on that fateful day 06 December 2015. And I may have mentioned strange medium and long-range memory lapses that don't really seem to have any pattern. There are some other noticeable changes in my brain function since that op. Now, are these things all due to oxygen starvation in the brain because of the 6-hour op? Are they after-effects of the anaesthesia? Or are they psychological in nature, i.e., my upbeat determination to heal, to redeem past time lost, to find joy, to be more prayerful - spending more time in prayer and meditation, to be spiritually sound?

So here is the list of post-op behaviours that I experience:
  • sporadic memory lapses, medium to long term
  • no depression after so many years suffering from it
  • less prone to procrastination
  • less anxiety
  • fewer mood swings
  • set stronger personal boundaries, and more argumentative (in good ways, so I am told!)
I have great respect for oncologists and their knowledge of immunotherapy and radiation treatment, but I firmly believe that natural healing has its place and is often the key to survival. 

I believe that natural healing by naturopathic means and special nutrition can be most beneficial in cases like mine, where the primary tumour and source of the cancer is removed through surgery (my left kidney in my case). I don't recommend that chemo and radiation be avoided, but rather than natural healing be explored at the same time. In my case, the natural healing took over immediately after the surgery, so much so that I have never had to endure any chemo or radiation.

If any of my readers would like to contact me with questions about cancer or about any aspects of my recovery journey, please feel free to contact me by email at or text me at 1-867-446-7017. 

Best wishes to you all this wonderful autumn.

Friday, 12 May 2017

A busy start to 2017 - working and writing

I am sorry to take so long to add to my story of recovery. I seem to be getting stronger every day, and I feel better than I have for at least 3 decades! As far as I can tell I am quite cancer free, but will get another CT scan checkup later in the summer of 2017.

During February and March I had the opportunity to do some consulting work for new local tourism businesses in Tuktoyaktuk and in Sachs Harbour. It was my first time in Sachs. March is a beautiful time of year, with the sun returning and the days lengthening at 8 minutes per day or more. I really must post some photos of the North in early spring. I will not try to add to this blog once a week or so.

The biggest news right now is that I tentatively have a writing mentor, Melissa Addey, who lives in the UK - an accomplished published writer who works through an agent. I say "tentatively" because we are trying out the mentor relationship where I send Melissa some of my writing - she reads and critiques and responds with suggestions for improvement.

Of course that news needs to be supported by the announcement that I am working on two books, one is the story of my cancer recovery journey using natural healing rather than chemotherapy and radiation (including the limitations of this approach) to bring encouragement and helpful suggestions to other cancer sufferers, and the other is a young adult novel centered here in the Arctic, with a lot of the action around Mount Thor, a mysterious mountain in Nunavut that is famous for being the highest flat vertical cliff face on the planet, 4200 feet in height. Some of my fictional story takes place underneath that mountain.

This blog entry is a short one. In the next episode I will concentrate on the research behind mistletoe extract injections such as Iscador to battle cancer. Notice I said RESEARCH. There is a lot of hype against naturopathic methods because of ignorance (and drug company lobbying of the medical profession) on the one hand, and inadequate certification requirements on the other. As explained near the beginning of this entire blog, I work with Dr Nicole Redvers in Yellowknife, who is one of the best Naturopathic Doctors on the planet. Sandra and I have trusted her, especially after she literally saved Sandra's life from severe liver problems stemming from food allergies.

I commissioned my dear cousin Aleta Karstad to paint an oak tree, with a sprig of mistletoe, and a haiku I had written about mistletoe as a healer. I have yet to figure out how to copy the photo of the painting and paste it here, but here is the haiku:

Wind and oak whisper
Cherishing the mistletoe
Mystery healer

It would mean a lot more if you could see the painting. Got it! Here it is:

Saturday, 4 February 2017

Personal attributes of healing

Once upon a wintertime! Winter indeed, warm (for the Arctic) at between -6 and -12 C day after day. But with 40 cm or so of snow here in Inuvik within the past 72 hours. And thigh high snow drifts. One local resident says she can only remember one other year when there was this much snow. And of course the winter is far from over. But the sun is coming back. The sun is now up for about 6 hours a day with long drawn colourful twilight at sunrise and sunset.

I recently received a beautiful card from a dear friend in Illinois who wanted me to share about what really keeps me well in body and spirit. And my dearest friend and spouse Sandra agrees with her! I talk about the Iscador, the turmeric/curcumin, avoiding sugar, the good nutrition - but that is only the physical part of my cancer and kidney healing. What about the personal part: attitude and emotion and belief? And the spiritual part?

Because I am a very private person, having grown up as an only child, I don't often share my inmost thoughts and cares and beliefs. Ok, here goes - !

We often read of people who recover from grave ailments simply because they believe they will recover. People in drug trials who are given a placebo rather than the real thing, but who recover simply because they believe they have received a healing treatment. This underscores the importance of attitude.

Right from the beginning, the quite miraculous discovery of my Stage 4 renal carcinoma (chest, abdomen, and lungs) at age 75, discovered only when I was sent south out of the Arctic by air ambulance with a false alarm of heart attack, made me wonder about other wondrous support. Combined with the intervention of a truly exceptionally-gifted surgeon, Dr Adrian Fairey. Why was I still alive, when the surgeon expressed surprise about that fact before the operation, because a tumour was possibly within minutes of stopping my heart?

When I awoke from the anesthetic I had two first thoughts. The first was "I'm still alive." The second was "Nothing matters but salvation" - meaning being entirely ready and willing for whatever God had planned for me. And I began to develop a very positive attitude toward post-operative healing. I knew of my cousin Aleta who had healed from leukemia many years ago with little help from the conventional medical profession. If she could do it, I could too! That was good enough reasoning for me at the beginning.

Following close on the heels of a positive attitude was joy. Joy goes far beyond mirth, happiness, peace, and comfort. It includes all these but transcends them as an integral part of spiritual well-being. I realized that, in whatever time I had left in life I needed joy. 

Those of you who know me well know that I treasure the wisdom recorded in the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. I read many, many, authors and books old and new, but none have the depth of meaning contained in the Bible. I prefer the King James Version of the Bible because I love the poetic resonance of old English. 

So, getting back to joy. Every time I read Joel 1:12 I have a profound sense of wonder. After naming several fruit trees Joel says: "all the trees of the field, are withered: because joy is withered away from the sons of men." From this came a profound personal revelation, that JOY is necessary in order for fruit to be produced. Anything of lasting value in my life, any spiritual fruit, cannot be produced without joy being there at the beginning. So if I want the miracle of healing, I need joy, first and foremost. When I refer to spiritual fruit I simply mean what the writer Paul refers to in his letter to the Christian church in Galatia, Gal 5:22: "the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance -." Spirit with a capital "S" means that I need spirit way beyond the spirit of man, I need the Spirit of God. And of course I note that joy is mentioned right after "love" as the preeminent fruit of God's Spirit.

So both in terms of natural and spiritual healing in life, I am kept by the power of God. I can't help but think of the 10th verse of chapter 35 of the book of Isaiah: "the ransomed of the Lord shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away."

In conclusion, I ask myself: what else is necessary for healing to continue? And the only answer that comes is - thankfulness - gratitude. Being thankful to God that I have been given these added days of joy. Which leads to my "new year's resolution" for 2017, that I must show my gratitude by living the last days/years of my life to be a help to others as I journey.

Finally, back to the natural side of healing, my kidney is responding, slowly but surely, to better nutrition and plenty of water in my daily diet. The eGFR rating is now between 36 on the low end and 47 on the high end, much better than a year ago, when it hovered around 32 to 35, and the corresponding creatinine number now usually falls below 150. And I feel full of energy most of the time, not lethargic and tired out. My physical strength is returning, however slowly, and working out at the gym helps, not to mention shovelling snow!! And being virtually cancer free is wonderful, with the only cautionary note being that I need to keep my two enlarged lymph nodes in my chest shrinking to normal size. For that I need to continue to keep my immune system happy and healthy every day.

Saturday, 21 January 2017

Cancer recovery reaches a milestone

Great news to report. I hopped on the Boeing 737 and visited the Stanton Medical Centre in Yellowknife on January 9th for a CT Scan of both chest and abdomen to see if there was further reduction of my kidney cancer. The radiologist gave the following final comments the Scan: "there is no evidence of recurrence or metastatic disease." This is really quite amazing when I compare this radiology report with the Feb 3, 2016 report (first one after the Dec 6 op) that still showed my lungs quite riddled with cancerous and other abnormal stuff. Other notes in this most recent report showed that for the first time the two enlarged lymph nodes in my chest are shrinking, still enlarged, but smaller than they were at the last Scan in August 2016.

The visiting oncologist from the Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton, Dr John Walker (named after the famed brand of scotch no doubt) was very pleased with the result at the consultation the next day, Tuesday January 10th, and suggested that the next scan could be deferred for a period of about 6 months. He also suggested that I should return to Edmonton for a consult with Dr Adrian Fairey, my now renowned surgeon.

On Tuesday the 17th I journeyed to Edmonton, including an airline and aircraft change in Yellowknife, for an appointment with Dr Fairey the eminent surgeon the next day, Wednesday the 18th. Dr Fairey was all smiles, said how he always looked forward to seeing me (I am one of his success stories as far as cancer surgery is concerned), and his remarks re the radiology report were: "It doesn't get better than this!" He did caution that renal carcinoma was infamous for returning aggressively at any time. I am glad he said this because my natural inclination at such good news would ordinarily be: Yay, now I can eat chocolate, and peanut butter and jam sandwiches, and mountains of pasta, and ice cream, and----   and on and on. However, I am going to continue my chosen regimen of daily doses of concentrated curcumin and Iscador injections three times a week, and the minimization of sugar and simple carbs. And also minimizing the inflammation character of wheat in favour of oats, in porridge, in home-made bread, etc.

Although there would be no need for a definite appointment in the future with the oncological  results as they are, Dr Fairy encouraged me to contact him if I noticed any significant changes. He gave me this task because in his opinion oncologists often do not recognize situations that could be better addressed by surgery than by drug or radiation-based cancer treatment. So he wants me to alert him of any new thing happening by way of cancer recurrence.

Since no cancer can now be seen - I want to keep it that way. It is hard though, because I really crave sugar and carbs from time to time. And I am sure that I will be on Iscador injections for the rest of my life. And remember that Iscador is a commercial name of a medically active ingredient of mistletoe. With a reminder mistletoe was used in ancient times as a natural healing agent (see, for example). Here is a quote from this site: "Mistletoe was known by the Celts and the Vikings as a healing plant upon which superstition and myth had bestowed miraculous healing powers."

Which leads me to my cancer recovery mantra. And that is, that God has given us bodies that have very effective immune systems to fight all manner of disease, including cancer. Therefore we should use all natural means in God's creation to encourage the T-cells in our bodies to target the destruction of cancer cells. Only if natural healing systems fail should we turn to artificial medical means for killing cancer cells such as chemotherapeutic drugs and radiation. I find it amazing that good naturopathic medicine practitioners always recommend seeking help from the medical profession, whereas medical doctors never recommend natural healing. To their credit though, oncologists now are seeking those drugs or healing agents that influence the immune system to target cancer cells, and this healing system is loosely referred to as immunotherapy. Here is a definition taken at random from the Internet: "Immunotherapy, also called biologic therapy, is a type of cancer treatment designed to boost the body's natural defenses to fight the cancer. It uses substances either made by the body or in a laboratory to improve or restore immune system function.

Huge amounts of money are being put into immunotherapy, not only in North America, but also in China for example. Part of an extensive chapter in an AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science) supplement to Science Magazine, Precision medicine in China, December 2016, is devoted to immunotherapy treatment as part of what the Chinese medical fraternity refers to as precision medicine - in this case precisely programming T-cells to target and kill cancer cells.

The western medical system is completely brainwashed by the major drug companies, in the sense that drug administration is included in their medical training, whereas natural healing mechanisms are not. I repeat, I believe that chemotherapy and radiation should only be chosen if natural healing fails. My cancer recovery is a case in point. I have not been able to find renal carcinoma just going away on its own on any of the best medical sites that I visited on the Internet in 2016, including a special site for medical practitioners that a doctor friend introduced me to by giving me his password. Neither he nor the site shall be named!!

So, why me? I believe that my great and wonderful Creator (Isaiah 9:6) has kept me alive, not to strut and keep advertising the personal miracle of recovery, but to set to work to the best of my ability to help others, in whatever ways I can. That is my new-year's resolution for 2017.