Today I’d like to take that question out in the open and see how it looks in the light of day. It was my first reaction upon hearing my radiologist say to me that the lump I had found on my breast self exam was a problem and needed to come out. “How is that even possible?” was my first gut reaction. “This has to be a joke,” was my second.
But it’s no joke.
I’ve now been scanned to the nth degree and all conclusions are the same – the small lump is most probably malignant. It is encapsultated and the other spots found on the scans are “likely benign” or completely benign. [I will write another post about why I chose to NOT do a biopsy with several doctors’ input going into my decision.]
Did the Misner Plan fail me, or did I fail the Misner Plan?
Let me start out by saying that after Ivan went into remission the first time with the Misner Plan and then came out of remission, he added a few things to his regimen and went to an alternative health center where he received non-toxic treatments including a medication known to target prostate cancer. We got professional help. Remember that we are NOT doctors. We formulated the Misner Plan with the input and guidance of Ivan’s medical team of functional medicine doctors. We always advise people to engage their doctors in their healing plan. I want to repeat that here . . . if you want to follow the Misner Plan, please make sure you do so with your doctor’s review and consideration.
The Misner Plan is a holistic plan, including mind, body, and spirit.
The mind and spirit part of the Misner Plan is JUST AS important (maybe even more so) than the dietary aspect. The title of our cook book is Healing Begins in the Kitchen. Get that? It BEGINS in the kitchen, and continues on in the gym, and in nature, and on the meditation mat. It also continues on to stress management, which we write about in our first book, but not to the extent that it deserves. Apparently, there is going to be a follow up book to this one! What do you think?
Over the past four years, I have significantly rearranged my life to put the needs of my husband above my own after his prostate cancer diagnosis. I changed significant patterns, like getting up and going straight into the kitchen to wash, prep, and cook the 4-5 servings of vegetables we normally eat at breakfast, to make the Sunshine Smoothie, and count out the supplements for us both, instead of going out to the gym. And then after breakfast, I tackled all my email, filled in as my husband’s personal assistant and communications manager, managed the BNI Foundation, worked on several writing projects at the same time, planned our travel arrangements, moved the contents of FOUR houses to Texas, moved two of our kids (one of them twice), and . . . I’ve got to stop listing all the madness, since I’m supposed to be keeping my stress level down. My regular workouts ended, my meditation practice became sporadic, I stopped practicing Tai Chi and Qi Gong daily – all the things that kept me centered and at peace.
Do you see what I mean? What was needed for a season became my “new normal,” not because Ivan or anyone else was insisting on that, but because I took this all on myself! He tried over and over to get me to slow down, but I was like the Energizer Bunny. There was no stopping me. In November I began to realize that I was, not on the verge of burnout, but way past the edge. Someone told me at the BNI Global Convention, “I’ve never seen you looking so tired.” No, I probably have never been so tired.
I remember how hard I trained in the gym after 9/11. It seems like for me, when something really overwhelms me emotionally, going into overdrive is my way to deal with it.
I don’t care how well a person is eating, if we are chronically burning the candle at both ends and not processing emotional stress well, our bodies will not be functioning at optimal levels, and our immune systems will become suppressed, opening the door for any numbers of health crises.
And so enter stage right: the tiny messenger. This 1.2 cm mass is my messenger. It is saying, “Get your life back in harmony. Find your center. Remember to laugh. BREATHE! And make the necessary adjustments to open space back up for yourself.” I have been studying energetic medicine, and now I get to enter the learning lab. Going into overdrive cannot be my way of dealing with stress.
I’m making some long-needed changes.
Starting with the BNI Foundation. Do you know I have never been a paid employee of the BNI Foundation? I am a volunteer! And now that we have a capable, professional, and highly skilled Executive Director, Stephanie Starr, it is time for me to take the BNI Foundation President’s hat off. I will continue representing the foundation as its Co-Founder, together with Ivan. The philanthropic and humanitarian work we are doing together feeds my soul. Managing the website does not. Thank you, Beth Epperson, for taking that on with Sean Fernandes and Meena Srinivasan of Scion Social. Thank you to Brian Bentzen for helping us raise up more Business Voices Teams. And we have a REAL board now. Board Chair Jeff Stay runs the show with panache and heart. Board members Andy Hart, Michael Walchonski, and Graham Weihmiller provide solid guidance and oversight. Together we have created a team that will usher the BNI Foundation into a whole new era, and it’s not on my shoulders anymore.
Next let’s talk about travel. While going places with my husband and meeting our BNI members all over the globe is amazing and I love it very much, getting on a plane virtually every two weeks is just not. I have a beautiful home on the lake in Austin with wildlife all around me, birds singing a wonderful concert just for us every morning, and both a meditation room AND a library of my own. To be home three weeks in a row happens so rarely. I need to be home three MONTHS in a row! I am not cut out to be a road warrior.
And managing my day-to-day routine, well! That is going to change, too. Simple things, like washing and prepping the breakfast veggies during the wash and prep phase of the supper veggies will give me time in the morning to do that work out AND even take a shower afterwards! Wow! Chopping some extra vegetables and using them in the rice cooker with wild rice for a simple and delicious lunch will open up that time I used to spend on lunch prep for my meditation again.
I am hearing this tiny messenger tell me that self care is non-negotiable. I’m taking this month and putting myself into healing bubble. My path is not the conventional standard-of-care treatment, so I have taken myself to an alternative hospital in Mexico for a week, which will be followed up with three weeks of very specific detoxing treatments in California. I will go home with a new normal that will support total health and the healing that has already started.
Imagine where I might be today if I had NOT been following the Misner Plan? That thought also crossed my mind.
I’m writing more specifics about the treatment I am receiving in a Facebook Group created for those who wish to learn more about that. Click here to request to be added, and I’ll be glad to approve you. You can even invite others whom you know who might like to participate in the conversation there.
And there is something you can do for me. Find ways every day to raise the level of LOVE in your environment. Release yourself to tell someone around you that you don’t normally say “I love you” to that you love them. You really do, but you probably don’t just go around telling them. They need to hear it to know it, and you boost your own feel-good hormones when you tell them! Love is right at the top of my list of prescriptions for health. It is the most powerful healing energy of the universe.