Thursday, March 14, 2013

Colorectal Cancer and the Healing Garden

Colon and rectum are parts of the body that we really don't want to talk about, not even during the Month for Colorectal Cancer Awareness.  Colon cancer is the most common and second deadliest cancer; however, if detected early and treated, the mortality rate will definitely drop.  It is our well being at stake; it is our bodies, and it is time that we do talk, act, and take care of ourselves.

The colon is approximately four to five feet long and its purpose is to absorb water, salt and nutrients, store waste, and eliminate waste.  The peculiar thing about colon cancer is that you may not have any symptoms and you have never felt better.   Any way, talk to your doctor about a screening.  There are many options available.  It is especially important if other family members have been diagnosed with cancer and you have reached the magical age of fifty.

You may be the first one to detect cancer symptoms by glancing at your stools before flushing the toilet looking for either bright red blood in the stools or even dark red.  Check the toilet paper tissue, for heaven's sake!  No need to be shy about your daily routines and body parts.  Call your doctor and tell him if you have  discovered blood in your stools and that you want it checked out.  Your are the first line of defense.

Fast forward to the tranquility of my Back Forty garden that smooth booboos on my soul, calms my shattered nerves, and restores my spirit as well as my physical well being.  After two years of being seduced by a recliner under a love blanket and the chair's warm arms embracing me, I finally got the gumption to get up and leave to go out to my overgrown garden.  I am a colorectal cancer survivor.

When I saw the tall weeds in the garden, I groaned.  I started pulling the weeds with one hand while holding my stomach with the other.  It was one weed, one clump, after another.  It was slow going.  At the end of this garden therapy, my butt ached, my legs and arms ached; however after a while, my muscles were shaping up a little bit at a time.  I was feeling better.  I looked better.  Morning after morning, I went out for more punishment, therapy, or yoga in the garden.  Eventually the garden got weeded and my muscles ceased  aching.  Thank you, God!  I feel blessed.

So, what did my husband do while I was snuggling up under the blanket in the recliner?  He cared for me and cooked for me.  He made sure that I always had a huge bucket to puke into and that I was comfortable.  Many many nights he inserted needles into my drip lines attached to my arm and made sure the pump was running to allow for the dripping.  He was a wonderful nurse and he still takes good care of me.  I am blessed to have him in my life.

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