7th Spetember 2014: London, United Kingdom
The activity of keeping a journal for anyone with Cancer will be stressed as it’s during this very process whereby I am able to identify certain triggers for behaviours and actions. Also, the process of writing allows reason rather than fantasy to prevail. In a recent example, the identified trigger are two simple words, “the mind”. I was approaching a social situation whereby people who I hadn’t seen since becoming unwell would be present. A look into my mind would show thoughts consisting of, how do I show I’m on my A-game, what response is to follow from the age old phrase of ‘so… how are you’. It is the writing process that enables me to see the cause of the problem isn’t the outside projected perceptions. Namely, a perception of everyone now seeing me as that Caner guy. Rather, my internal thought patterns.
Sleep forms one of the key foundations to my belief about my progress. I view it on par with nutrition, stress reduction, movement, meditation, a difference in pace, the power of the mind, and utilising medical expertise. Sleep, has always held importance in my life, however, often overlooked during my past days. At present, I ensure the hours of sleep each night remain paramount. Sleep is at the centre of the story unfolding above. In the lead up to the night whereby I would be meeting others in a social situation, a plastered scorn over my face would have been seen due to the lingering prospect of being placed in another situation where all the questions about Cancer will arise, and an unshifting agnst in regards to whether I would have sufficient sleep. As the night commenved, my scorn disappeared and I was surprised at the feeling of comfort experienced once arriving at the house, party due to the knowledge of not needing nor missing alcohol, and then ease in talking with people. It actually made me think why I had been dwelling on this, and the enjoyment I was having. I them had an instinct that time was getting away and when I glanced at the clock, I noticed it was nearing 12pm. No! Midnight and I’m still out, and oddly enjoying myself. All this went against what I had been believing what was keeping me healthy and alive. A quick discussion with my girlfriend followed, and I made an exit for the door. I was happy to some degree that I was getting home whilst also completing unaware of the critical stance I would soon wage against myself for getting home at 12:30pm. Again hindsight is needed. Really, is this going to be mean I become unwell? Of course not. The difficulty results from the narrative about myself dictating how I am to live and the changes needed to be made in regards to my lifestyle, and getting home past midnight does not feature within this story.
A restless few hours followed as I tussled with the ideas that this isn’t how I should be living and that I needed to head to a tranquil place where I can sleep at 9pm and rise at 6:30am. A series of breathing exercises did little to settle me and my thoughts going to sleep were firmly focused on the dreams about a place with sunshine and waves. I finally managed to sleep, and am clearly able to link this to other circumstances, namely, when I feel a level of guilt for engaging in something I deem not to be health promoting. For example, in the past, I thought enjoying two bottles of beer with my friends was a problem and didn’t suit the created picture for how I would be living my life so consequently I left feeling mixed emotions. I have come to realise the need for a plan, and I’m not advocating for anything in moderation. Instead, living the best life you can, and personally it entails eliminating the periods of guilt experience as they only place stress on my body. Importantly, the consciousness required to remember a life needs to be adopted that is sustainable for the rest of my life. Plus, a life, similar to others where plans can shift.