I prefer to think of every day of my life as a challenge to make a conscious effort to live better. Some days I rock it, while others not so much. I try my very best to not let the bad days get me down and I am grateful for each new day to try again. Today, was a pretty good day. For a while now, I have been contemplating if or how I wanted to share some of my more personal experiences. I knew I would want to blog about this at some point, but didn't really know how or when I would make this happen. After all, this is mostly a foodie blog these days. Well I think I have figured this out so here goes.
Recently, I have had doctors inform me that I apparently carry a mutated CDH1 gene. This gene is known to increase the likelihood of a rare stomach cancer that affects the lining of your stomach. It is VERY hard to detect and according to these doctors impossible to treat. Their recommendation is to remove the healthy stomach to prevent any cancer from forming. I know this seems extreme and it is really. I won't go into too much detail about the stats, just know that, on paper, it doesn't look very positive. So far I have had the routine tests to see what might be going on in my stomach & colon areas done and I do not yet have the results.
I know there will be people out there who might not understand this or even agree with much that I have to say from this point forward; I don't expect you to. This is my journey and I just ask that you respect my right to share what I know to be truth. I do not judge others for not agreeing with me, please do me this courtesy as well. Thanks.
I am a woman of faith; meaning I try to trust Christ for ALL things in my life. This is not an easy task especially in light how things look on paper. However, I am fully confident I will be just fine. This is a risky thing for me to share because I am leaning 100% on faith at this point and I run the risk of looking foolish if things don't turn out the way I expect. That is after all the definition of faith. The bottom line is, I just don't agree with the doctors; not in this case, not at this time. To have gene for something does not mean that I WILL get sick and to say so goes against everything I believe to be true. God did not create cancer, WE (people) did. I won't go into details about how I think WE made cancer, there is enough information out there to confirm that. For me, this means I can do something to make prevent the gene from getting "switched on".
Some (many really) might say, "Just take out the stomach and you don't need to worry about these things.". This is a valid way to come at this situation and I can see how that might make sense and I have thought about it, prayed about it and ultimately I disagree and here is why. Being a woman of faith I needed to ask myself who is Lord of my life? The answer is easy, Jesus (the answer is always Jesus). Well, one night, while praying with some very insightful women from our church, I was asked to claim exactly what Jesus was Lord over in my life. There were many things on the list such as home, children, marriage, mind and my body was one of them. This was hard to swallow. Did I really believe that? At the time, I had recently received the blood test results for the gene testing and was bitter about having to deal with this at all, "I am young and a wife and a mother of 4 great children and this isn't supposed to be happening to me.". Thoughts I'm sure many people in this situation have had. Truth is though, if Jesus is Lord of my body, then I need to let Him handle this and trust that God doesn't give us Cancer. I am not naive, MANY faith filled people (people I know) have had cancer or other sicknesses and some even have died from them. I do not feel more holy or righteous than anyone else, but I know in my soul that I can't just give in to fear. I need to fight for the promises from my Lord.
So, "How do you plan on fighting?" you ask. Well, since there doesn't seem to be any real and present threat in my family thus far, I will continue to claim this health over myself and my family; reminding myself who is really in control here. God made me and he made me good (I tell it to my children every night, time to live it). I will continue to take exceptionally good care of my self, spiritually, mentally and physically. I have been actively seeking a healthy lifestyle for well over 10 years now, not that my life prior was so unhealthy, but I plan to get even better at it in the days, months and years to come.
As mentioned earlier, I am a God loving woman and give Him credit for what He has made in each of us. By trusting in God more, I am also reducing the stress that I carry, because we are never in this life alone. As a family, we are taking good care of our spines which control out nervous system and our body's God given ability to heal and repair itself. We have already begun to eat what we grow (larger garden next year I hope) and be aware of what and where our food comes from. Now for me, the exercise is probably going to be the toughest part. I am a Mom who seldom sits and while I do love a good heart pumping workout, I have yet mastered the art of putting my fitness health in higher priority. I need to get as passionate about fitness as I am about my menus.
Thanks for taking the time to read this very personal look into my life. I will keep you posted as to the results and progress as it comes, but in the meantime, please do remember us in your thoughts and prayers. We are put on this earth to love God, to be in relationship with one another, to encourage and to love. I pray that my journey can touch lives and bring God the glory he so rightly deserves. God Bless you and keep you. May he make His face to shine upon you with favour and give you peace as you journey through these next days, weeks and months ahead.