Proposed model to work with people who have Cancer


29th September 2014: Sydney, Australia

The drawing above symbolises the proposal I am creating, with the goal of operating facilitated educational groups for people with Cancer. Prior to commenting further, I recognise the details of my ‘Sunflower framework for Cancer’ is by no means revolutionary. On the contrary, many other existing frameworks about healthy living are composed of similar themes. So the question may be posed of why state a framework has been created if similar groups already operate? I would argue, many programmes regardless of the topic operate under fundamental principles to the specific area. I feel a crossover in some content may be present, however, the designed activities and homework tasks separate the programme from others, and importantly, would benefit those who participate The framework is a concrete model applied into my own life, a guidance of sorts, helping me to progress throughout my time thus far. Moreover, I feel it will be very helpful for others in a similar situation, especially should they adopt the model. In addition, the framework can act as a tool for increasing the understanding of others playing a supportive/caring role for a person with Cancer who is working on a plan to achieve longterm health and well-ness.
The Sunflower Framework consists of seven principles, all inseparable to ensure a complete and wholesome approach to Cancer is adopted. The sunflower is seen as the perfect visual representation for the principles. Similar to a sunflower and it’s petals, not all the principles have to be adopted for the flower (you) to exist, however, comparing a full thriving sunflower to one depleted of it’s petals can be reflective of the health of your body. Therefore, I am proposing that for you to be flourishing and living as healthy as possible, then all the principles need to be applied.
When breaking down certain aspects, the stem is of course an essential component of the sunflower. In this instance it can resemble the journey of Cancer. It is hoped that over time the stem becomes strong and gains in length, equating to you achieving strength and longevity. The sunflower is also seasonal, again comparable to the experience of Cancer, with a combination of days feeling significantly brighter than others. Lastly, the meaning of the sunflower is of importance. A google search showed, the sunflower’s petals have been likened to bright yellow rays of sunshine, which evoke feelings of warmth and happiness.
To expand upon the meaning of the sunflower and it’s relevance to Cancer immediately elicits a sense of health, life and survival. Moreover, the warmth is associated with a comfort in the knowledge of having a direction to work towards building the strength needed to find a place for the Cancer in your life. Finally, adoration is all about love, and Cancer has the capacity to build, renew or strengthen love in your life. A love and appreciation required to fully accomplish a sense of happiness, in whatever form love may manifest.

Patient vs Professional control

26th September 2014: Sydney, Australia

A visit with my GP was completed today. Whilst there, I explained my recent symptoms, was then checked for less than five minutes and walked out with a precautionary prescription of antibiotics. When thinking about the appointment, I am mindful of the context surrounding the appointment. Firstly, both the doctor and I had an understanding that the purpose of the appointment was a means to pursuing a financial claim rather than seeking actual medical attention/advice. Secondly, the doctor is fully aware that the Cancer I had removed in February effects approximately 1:1000,000 people, with a specialist involved in the management of my care. Therefore, a degree responsibility is removed from his duty of care. Finally, I imagine the rarity of the circumstances evokes a degree of caution stemming from a limited understanding about the Cancer and the proposed treatment. The fact of the specific type of chemotherapy not registering on his database is evidence to support this.

My intention is to not place criticism on general practitioners, rather highlight the need for others to take control of their treatment whilst encouraging people to educate themselves prior to appointments and use specific planned questions when having face to face contact. In addition, the point of seeking alternate modes towards health promotion can’t be stressed enough. The above example demonstrates the complete attention directed to pharmaceutical interventions rather than factors such as diet, movement, stress, etc. It has already been noted that the context surrounding each appointment has created a diminished responsibility for the doctor, however, I left feeling reassured that a self-directed strategy to work towards my long-term plan of health and wellness is essential. The feelings stem from a simple questioning of whether it was really that unexpected for my immune system to be weakened, allowing my sore throat to persevere when I had not been living by my key principles? The answer is straight forward. Of course a reduction in regular movement compounded by reduced sunlight, a flight from Europe to Australia, increased stress, insufficient sleep and a slip in my eating approach is going to leave my body weakened. It may sound bizarre, however, with the exception of the nausea and fatigue, my mind and body have never felt as good as they have this year. I believe this all results from the adopted approach to life whereby a recreated a body and mind is more resilient to infection whilst I continuously strive for self-imporvement. Therefore, when some, if not all these factors are stripped away isn’t it inevitable that my body is going to negatively react, allowing an infection to surface? To conclude, a deserved rest for the body and mind is needed to get me back on track, and the steps are already in motion to achieve this. For example, I have recently sourced information to further my knowledge base about maintaining my health, my eating has improved, I am continuing plans for a detox, have been able to direct greater attention to the area of mindfulness, am getting direct sunlight and am slowly integrating movement back into my life. I speak with a confidence that the prescription will not be necessary when I am writing next week with a renewed healthy and focused mindset towards both my current circumstances and future prospects.