Never Stop Searching: End of Chemo Cycle 4

I apologize…this post will probably come off as very abstract, but in my messy mind, I believe that I’ve stumbled across a key component to finding even more internal peace as I continue to travel this journey.  During the last couple cycles of Chemo, day 6 and 7 (the two days after I take my last pill for each cycle) have been the roughest. I usually have flu like symptoms and extreme fatigue. Today is day 6 of Cycle 4 and I have none of those symptoms. Even though the verdict is technically still out (since day 7 is tomorrow and things could be different), now comes the speculation about the reasons as to why I feel better. (it would be great to figure it out, because that means that I can make sure to continue doing the thing that is working) I will prove to you that after I make a very long list of possible reasons as to why I’m doing so well, you’ll see that it is better to let go of all the speculation (for the sake of stress) and just be grateful that I feel well and that I continue to make progress, but also, prove the importance of why I should never stop asking “why?”.

List of Possible Reasons as to why I’m doing better during this Cycle of Chemo:

1. My body has worked up the tolerance

2. I’ve been exercising (within my limits)

3. I’ve been getting much better sleep

4. I’ve been listening to my body better than before  (as to when it needs to rest etc.)

5. I’ve been eating a lot more fiber

6. I’ve been taking more dietary supplements (including a probiotic)

7. I’ve been eating less sugar

8. I’ve been taking acupuncture

9. I had Amy to myself all week

10. I’ve been letting out stress by playing video games

11. I’ve been managing my stress a lot better in other ways too (including breathing techniques).

12. I’ve been doing things I enjoy (like writing, spending times with friends, Listening to music loudly etc)

13. I have an amazing support system

14. I have a lot of prayer coming my way

15. I’ve been doing intense daily meditations and “quiet times”

16. I’ve been eating a lot cleaner

17. I’ve been drinking more water

18. I’ve been keeping active more consistently

19. I’ve been staying positive

20. I’m young

21. My immune system is getting stronger

22. I’ve been getting a healthy daily dose of Vitamin D

23. I’m just doing better…no real reason why.

As you can see, it’s easy to drive myself crazy trying to get to the core of “Why?” However, as I step back, I realize that none of these reasons are actually telling me “why”, they’re giving me possibilities as to “how” I might be feeling better. Instead, I’ve chosen to say to myself, “It must be a combination of all these things” and bask in the fact that I even care to ask “Why?” in the first place.  It’s probably a very abstract idea for most people but for me I believe that the question “Why?” is what makes us human and sets us apart in this lonely universe. I believe the question “Why?” is also what teaches us that there is something bigger than ourselves out there, because it forces us to look “out there” in the first place. “Why?” can also be the chord that unravels us if we’re not careful. I’ve seen that especially with fellow Cancer patients, we’re all looking for the answer to “Why?” But I think I’m learning that it’s the question itself that is the most important thing to consider and examine (plus it takes a big load off your shoulders of trying to find all the answers i.e. the long list above). Amy and I watched “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” the other day and found it to be a powerful film about the process of grief through the eyes of a “special” and “curious” kid as he goes on a quest to find the meaning behind his father’s death from the 9-11 attacks and the thematic conclusion of the film (sorry to spoil it) is to “never stop searching” or some could say never stop asking “why?”. I hope that resonates with you as it has resonated with me this week. Here’s the trailer for the movie…it’s just came out on DVD, Blu-Ray, or iTunes or however you watch movies nowadays (the point is that you can watch it at home).

Much Love,

Alex

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