In a recent interview actor Patrick Swayze of Dirty Dancing fame (and thats about it, unless you liked Roadhouse or Point Break, which....well, just no) addressed his 2008 diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. I have to say I take issue with three particular points that were made in the interview, and as recent diagnosee (?) myself feel obligated to comment upon. These are of course my opinions only and outside of my standard blog sphere, but please bear with me, I have to blow off some steam!
1) He continues to smoke. This seems like the most ridiculous thing that you can do, knowingly introducing toxins into your body when it's in the fight of (literally) your life. I can't express how happy I am that I have been a non-smoker for almost two years and this is a non-issue for me, and I can certainly appreciate how hard it is to quit, but this has to be "step one" of any healthy living plan, cancer or no. Of course it's his choice, but I hate to see a celebrity jack up the public with this lameness in a public forum. Some people consider these people role-models.
2) He says to live for five more years is "wishful thinking". Yes, I suppose with that attitude it certainly is. While I understand fully the statistics and feel that a Will, Durable Power of Attorney and Medical Directives are crucial for anyone, especially in this situation, I prefer to have long-term plans as well and not write an end to my story just yet, thank you very much. I have things to do, places to see and the best intentions of doing/seeing them. Deciding in advance when my time is through will virtually guarantee it, become a self-fulfilling prophecy, if you will, so I choose a different approach, again his prerogative, but so sad, when you think about it. To live with no hope cannot be the way to go.
3)He will do nothing to change/improve his diet, since it "helps the cancer stay healthy too" or some hooey. Hmmm, cancer bad, anti-oxidants good, fight bad stuff. Seems pretty straightforward to me. The bad part is I've heard this echoed by doctors, who, as is well-documented, have 1-2 hours max of nutrition education in medical school. While I believe they can address my cancer, I don't believe, based on reactions, that they know how best to support all of my other systems while I get better. He says he wants to enjoy life and not chase after a cure. I can fully appreciate this, but feel that a modicum of interest in your own health and healing is essential to getting better. Taking the time for a good nutrition plan is a stepping stone for any healthy living plan, whether addressing weight, diabetes, high blood pressure or just basic longevity, so it seems pretty essential to do all you can when you are ill. Plus, alkalinity is the enemy of cancer, so continuing to eat a high acid diet is just feeding the beast, it seems. I could go on here, but I think my point is made.
I have had many recent discussions about what we believe in the head is what will most likely work for us, as long as positive attitude plays a huge role. Some believe supplements cured them of cancer, others their diet, others affirmations or still others straightforward chemo. All can work, its about the outlook you have toward them. I believe they can all work together (back to my multi-pronged approach) but I will continue to make sure I'm making decisions that make sense to me, feel right in my head, heart and gut as well, and will steer clear of things that I feel negatively toward.