Elimination of food commences

21st October 2014: Sydney Australia

My two day elimination of solid food has commenced. In honesty, I am feeling refreshed and overall fantastic. I have been mindful of my output, focusing on a day of rest, including the practising of a gentle/floor based form of yoga, have meditated, had a book prepared to read, and scheduled a bath into my day. All these points had been planned in advance to maximise the restorative benefits from the day.
In regards to my diet, I started the day with a banana smoothie mixed with almonds, chia seeds, flax seeds, strawberries, oats and almond milk; at lunch a bowl of home made pea soup was eaten; another banana smoothie with spinach, almonds, honey, LSA mix, dates and almond milk was consumed in the afternoon and plan to have another home made pea soup for dinner. In addition, two cups of herbal tea was had during the morning period when I usually snack on nuts or fruit. Just to note, my intake of water was consistent throughout the day.

I have noticed some recognisable changes though, including a definite disparity in my energy levels this far, and the mental capacity. Plus, behaviour wise, I still routining wonder into the kitchen to snack, however, recognise it has helped me to show it is just to snack rather than an essential meal. I still have a few hours left in the day so am planning to continue with rest. It must be noted that I acknowledge it’s not comparable to the fasts undertaken by the colleagues I had in London during the period of Ramadan or other recommended fasts, and I am still having sufficient food for a day.

Personally, it is still a substantial change in my daily eating regiment, and as noted I feel there has been a positive effect on my body. One such noticeable change is my stomach feeling settled without a churning, a gentle reminder of how my body once functioned prior to the growth of tumour. I am interested to review my progress and state of mind when writing tomorrow. Till then, a movie will be switched on and I’ll be relaxing for the night.

Carer support

20th October 2014: Sydney Australia

In terms of how my body is feeling it has been another happy day! A few other areas of my life wouldn’t necessarily be deemed to be in a similar place, however, limited attention will be directed towards this as my focus is on remaining positive about the current level of health experienced. One of the days highlights consisted of a discussion with the an employee of the Australian Cancer Council whereby I touched upon the ideas surrounding the principles of The Sunflower Framework. The response was extremely encouraging, leaving me with a sense of satisfaction whilst also propelling me into the next stage of writing so the manuscript is in a position for others to read and provide feedback.

I made the call to Cancer Council to make inquires about what support is available for carers, with particular focus on my mum and capacity to maintain her well-being and strength in face of the stress and worry associated with my circumstances. Prior to making contact, I had a discussion with my mum requesting her to consider linking in with a support group for carers, and to my pleasure she was interesting in taking up the option. Surprisingly, there seems to be little support available to carers of people with Cancer. I am not at all undermining the need for support in other areas, I was just astonished to see the vast support network opportunities available for carers of people with dementia, mental health and disability in comparison to the little support available to people with Cancer. The three areas mentioned above are all extremely difficult, draining and stressful areas for carers, and it was positive to see the available options. I did just feel a little perplexed at the disparity of specialist support available for carers with Cancer, especially with the rise of Cancer within the population, and it made me think about the gap in service availability.

Preparation for my fast/cleanse

19th October 2014: Sydney Australia

Plans have been made to commence the two day cleanse/fast on Tuesday. I don’t know whether it would actually be deemed a fast as I don’t foresee actually getting hungry. A combinations of soups, smoothies and juices will suffice be consumed over the two period. Plus, it is only two days!

My parents and close friends have been made aware of my intentions in advance to eliminate any food stressors within this period and to give everyone notice I will not be attending any social events over this period. The plan consists off having a smoothie in the morning, followed by soup at dinner and lunch. If required, a juice or smoothie will be slotted into afternoon or post dinner. The particular method will ensure my body receives the necessary nutrients whilst giving my body the opportunity to not worry about breaking down any food. Therefore, attention can be directed completely to repairing and restoring. I found it essential in explaining my reasoning to my parents and how I was to approach the two days as their support is vital to a successful period of no stress. In addition, an approach was needed whereby I was not going to experience hunger or deprived myself from the necessary nutrients my body requires. My reasoning is specifically related to my personal experiences and has been learned over the period of having my chemotherapy. I’m not certain whether it has been covered in previous sections, however, failure to eat or allowing a level of hunger to have an effect on my body sends me on a fast downward spiral. So the idea of just replacing solids out of my eating approach for two days does not seem like it will have a detrimental impact on my functioning whilst allowing my body the chance to not have to direct energy to breaking down solid foods. To conclude, I must stress the importance of having my mum on board who has prepared batches of homemade fresh soup ready for both lunch and dinner times over the two days.