In this letter, I update Sofia (my belly dance teacher) on my treatment at Angeles Hospital. Despite the seriousness of my situation, I remain quite positive.

My Intention Is to Live to Ninety

May 12, 2014

Subject: hi from Mexico

Hi Sofia [my belly dance teacher].

My brother arrived yesterday from Toronto. On Sundays there is no treatment, so I got to leave the hospital and spend time with my brother at his hotel. It was heaven—a soft bed, laughing, sunshine; we watched a movie . . . ah, yes, there is life outside the hospital :)

The doctors decided not to do the low-dose chemo. We will be doing immune therapy. My tumor load is very large, and with a load that large and dense, chemo can actually be harmful and sometimes lethal if you kill the cancer too quickly. It is very sad that the cancer has progressed to this state, but I am in the best hands possible. God continues to guide me, and I continue to listen and follow.

There is a team of doctors working on my case. They will follow up with me for three years. It’s possible we may do the low-dose chemo down the road. You cannot do the immune therapy and the chemo together; they work against each other. However, if we do decide to do chemo at some point, THEY WILL ACTUALLY TEST MY CANCER AGAINST VARIOUS CHEMO AGENTS TO SEE WHICH ONE MY CANCER IS MOST RESPONSIVE TO. That is so important because it eliminates the needless ups and downs of trial and error. The medical technology here is so cutting edge. It is twenty levels above my head. It will take a long time for me to understand it, much less explain it to others, but I am taking it in a little at a time.

I had surgery my first day here to put two ports in my neck. That’s where all the infusions go in and that’s also where they remove my blood and put it back into my body.

Sofia, doctors measure success in cases like mine in terms of living a few months or years. I continue to envision myself living to at least ninety, and I have told my doctors so. Dr. Perez, the head of the clinic, was very pleased to hear this. He said being grounded and believing are 90 percent of the battle. On the other hand, Dr. Rosales, my managing doctor, seemed a little scared by my goals—as if he didn’t really believe it was possible. But why should I make my goals smaller to meet others’ expectations or limitations. His lack of belief did not bother me.

The situation is very serious, but God must have given me this challenge for a reason because he also gave me the gifts to address it—remarkable resilience, strong healing capacities, and a profound connection to source and universe. Also, all the right supports keep being sent to me at the right moment . . . there is some force, some strong force, far greater than me, far greater than you, which CLEARLY supports my intention for life. So as long as that is the case, I will continue to show up each day and do the work. THIS IS NOT EASY. ALTHOUGH I DO HAVE GOOD DAYS, MANY DAYS IT IS A STRUGGLE.

I choose to remain committed because honestly what are my choices—give up or keep trying. I am clearly not ready to give up. So I don’t care how large my tumor load is, I don’t care about anything negative that anyone has to say. I know there are no guarantees, but as long as the universe is supporting me, I will continue to show up for duty :) I still believe in my ability to turn this around.

I will let you know when I will be heading back to Marin. Could be a couple of weeks but could be longer. Doctors will assess when the time gets closer.




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