Travel Often

“I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.” — Rosalia de Castro

Love Deeply, but Laugh Along the Way

"Happiness is only real when shared." - Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild

View Marriage as an Adventure

"Love is a flower which turns into fruit at marriage." ~Finnish Proverb

Fuel your body with GOOD (It's the only one you get)

He who has health has hope; and he who has hope has everything. - Arabian Proverb

Open your Soul to Motherhood

A Grand Adventure is About to Begin - Winnie the Pooh

A New Kind of Love is Born

Mothers hold their children's hands for a short while, but their hearts forever.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Oh, Cancer...How I hate thee....

Cancer. Ugh, how I despise you.

Even the word sounds cold. Who gave it this title anyway? Isn't it an astrological sign? Can it really mean two completely different things?

I don't know about anyone else, but I feel like cancer is closing in. And what I mean by this is I feel like it's everywhere. Who doesn't know someone who has or had cancer? Was it like this back in the day?

I read an alarming statistic on Lance Armstrong's LIVESTRONG website. "28 million people live with cancer."

My grandma's sister was diagnosed in October with pancreatic cancer. On Thursday (just eight months later) she lost her life. A friend of ours rushed to the altar to make sure her dad could walk her down the aisle. She lost him to cancer a couple years later and just heard the devastating news her mom has stage four lung cancer. My friend's dad - a wrestler in the Olympics - was diagnosed with cancer. Yes, the Olympics. Please, someone explain this to me. He passed away two years ago. I guess we could bring up Lance Armstrong too. How can an elite athlete, someone so healthy, get sick? And then there's my college friend. Her personal story shook me to the core. Being only twenty-something at the time, she found out her mom had breast cancer. Her mom lost her battle, followed by her dad just nine months later. Say what? How does one go on?

These are all horrible, heart-wrenching stories. And of our travel buddies and dear friends, Erin Youngerberg, found out back in late October she has malignant melanoma (read her blog here). She is 32. A kid! Last week she learned she has stage 4 melanoma in her lungs. I am so mad right now. Why? Why God? Why her? Why now? Why does this have to happen? 

My friend Erin's blog about Malignant Melanoma
It makes me more determined than ever to find a cure or at least become more aware of ways to prevent it. I feel like cancer isn't going away, it's becoming a topic tossed around at the dinner table.

"Oh, yeah, just found out so-and-so has cancer..."

This scares me. It shouldn't be this way. When is it going to stop? When is it going to leave us alone?

At night my brain runs a mile a minute. Why is cancer becoming more prevalent in today's world? Is it genes? Is it the toxins in the environment and our food? Is it all the hormones we digest in meats and milk? Are we too stressed? Are we doing too much too fast and wearing our bodies out? Do we need to slow down? Does it have to do with the fact 60 percent of the US population is overweight? Is it cell phones and time spent on computers and standing next to printers and fax machines? Or didn't doctors know how to diagnose some cancers properly twenty years ago and with the latest technology they can today? Someone needs to explain this to me!

As I was whining to my trainer at Life Time Fitness how fearful I am of cancer, he suggested I check out a book. He said it'll open my eyes and steer me in the right direction at least. It's called Cracking the Metabolic Code, 9 Keys to Optimal Health by Dr James Lavalle. But what does this have to do with cancer, I wondered? I went to the website and read the product review and was intrigued...

Doctors traditionally prescribe a pill for every ill. But for most people, these single solutions don't work. The truth is, most chronic health problems, including stubborn weight gain, unbeatable fatigue, intestinal distress, high blood pressure, creeping cholesterol, and high blood sugar, are not found in simply one organ, but in several parts of the body (often times in twos and threes). This is the result of years of slow, subtle challenges to your metabolism, which is as unique as you are. Your lifestyle habits, stress level, prescription drug use, and relationships, as well as the genes you inherit and the environment in which you live-in effect, the sum total of your life experience up to this day-determine your personal metabolism and, in turn, your current state of health.  

So I'm hoping to read it soon and report back. Or if any of you have read it, please fill me in. In the meantime, sign up to help find a cure on

"Friends warm you with their presence, trust you with their secrets, and remember you in their prayer."