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"Love is the Strongest Medicine"


Judy M2

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I just finished reading my oncologist's book about his experiences in life and his journey as a cancer doctor. It was a quick and friendly read. Here is an excerpt that I think captures the spirit of the book:

"In truth, I've been an oncologist long enough now to know that fear, confusion and hopelessness can take over very quickly--like a few seconds after bad news. They are the trapdoor--away from healing, away from empowerment, away from peace. The trick to avoiding that trapdoor is remembering that how you are doing is correlated with what you are doing. Tiny actions lead to feeling a tiny bit better, a tiny bit closer to where you want to be. So instead of shutting down, meet one of your most basic obligations, and then another. Eat something healthy, walk when you can, take your medicine, listen to your favorite song, keep your appointments, talk with your family, call your friend, tell someone you love them, watch a funny movie or reread that book you love. Do the things you must and do the things you love--that's the oncology patient's equivalent of putting one foot in front of the other, moving away from that chasm of hopelessness a little at a time. Inching closer to peace."

When my husband and I first sat in Dr. Steven Eisenberg's office, he rubbed the top of my husband's head while he told us how he wanted to (aggressively) treat my Stage IIIB adenocarcinoma. I'm not sure why he did that, but I knew then he was like no doctor I'd ever met before. He's been a great cheerleader for me throughout my treatments. 

I recommend this book for both patients and caregivers. Dr. E tells about his near-death experience as a teenager and the struggles he's had in his chosen profession, the people who motivated him to overcome it all, and how he has come to use music to form a strong bond with his patients. 

I hope just this post will help someone who is going through a rough time. I think that reading the book could help even more. 

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Thanks, Judy,

Just downloaded it for my Kindle app on my iPad. I remember when I was going through my initial diagnosis back in 2017 (lobectomy), I read "Emperor of All Maladies." It's all about cancer research and treatment through the ages, and it's an absolute page-turner (they made it into a PBS miniseries, too). I mentioned it to my surgeon, who was also a huge fan of the book.

Every challenge I have faced in my life has been helped by the reading I've done. When I get bad news (or puzzling or concerning news or circumstances in my life), books are my best friends. I guess it's my way of regaining a modicum of control--over myself and my attitude, even if I can't change the facts.

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I know I am coming out of nowhere but I got "Emperor of Maladies" based on LexieCat's recommendation.   I downloaded it from my library and am listening  to it on my headphones.  It is amazing!   There is so much I didn't know about the history of cancer discovery.   Somehow things make a little more sense.   Thank you very much, LexiCat. 

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Oh, I'm so glad you're enjoying it! It really is an amazing, fascinating book.

It really gives you a great appreciation of how the science has progressed. I should make everyone read this who claims that the pharmaceutical companies are "hiding" a cure for cancer, just so they can make money. This has been a difficult process, with many dead ends before new treatments are discovered and refined so they are actually effective.

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  • 1 month later...
On 5/27/2021 at 1:13 PM, Judy M2 said:

I just finished reading my oncologist's book about his experiences in life and his journey as a cancer doctor. It was a quick and friendly read. Here is an excerpt that I think captures the spirit of the book:

"In truth, I've been an oncologist long enough now to know that fear, confusion and hopelessness can take over very quickly--like a few seconds after bad news. They are the trapdoor--away from healing, away from empowerment, away from peace. The trick to avoiding that trapdoor is remembering that how you are doing is correlated with what you are doing. Tiny actions lead to feeling a tiny bit better, a tiny bit closer to where you want to be. So instead of shutting down, meet one of your most basic obligations, and then another. Eat something healthy, walk when you can, take your medicine, listen to your favorite song, keep your appointments, talk with your family, call your friend, tell someone you love them, watch a funny movie or reread that book you love. Do the things you must and do the things you love--that's the oncology patient's equivalent of putting one foot in front of the other, moving away from that chasm of hopelessness a little at a time. Inching closer to peace."

When my husband and I first sat in Dr. Steven Eisenberg's office, he rubbed the top of my husband's head while he told us how he wanted to (aggressively) treat my Stage IIIB adenocarcinoma. I'm not sure why he did that, but I knew then he was like no doctor I'd ever met before. He's been a great cheerleader for me throughout my treatments. 

I recommend this book for both patients and caregivers. Dr. E tells about his near-death experience as a teenager and the struggles he's had in his chosen profession, the people who motivated him to overcome it all, and how he has come to use music to form a strong bond with his patients. 

I hope just this post will help someone who is going through a rough time. I think that reading the book could help even more. 

Judy thx for the excerpt, his encouraging words really struck home with me and brought tears to my eyes.

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On 5/27/2021 at 2:00 PM, LexieCat said:

Thanks, Judy,

Just downloaded it for my Kindle app on my iPad. I remember when I was going through my initial diagnosis back in 2017 (lobectomy), I read "Emperor of All Maladies." It's all about cancer research and treatment through the ages, and it's an absolute page-turner (they made it into a PBS miniseries, too). I mentioned it to my surgeon, who was also a huge fan of the book.

Every challenge I have faced in my life has been helped by the reading I've done. When I get bad news (or puzzling or concerning news or circumstances in my life), books are my best friends. I guess it's my way of regaining a modicum of control--over myself and my attitude, even if I can't change the facts.

LexieCat, thx for the book recommendation.  Downloaded it last nite.

 

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