That is the question. I torture myself constantly about what I am putting into my body. Because often I wonder if something I consumed triggered the cancer cells. Doctors have assured me that isn't the case (it wasn't Splenda that caused cancer although I've stopped eating it just in case) and despite what I read online, spinach won't cure me. But that doesn't seem to stop the intense guilt I feel after consuming fast food on an occasion, because I wonder what those chemicals are doing to me. Especially after the constant ups and downs, I keep wondering, "what can I do???"
My doctor said to eat a healthy balanced diet that is low in carbs. I also started taking multi vitamins and met with a friend who is a nutritionist to see if there are other tips she may have. But it's hard to stick to a specific diet when no one can confirm that it will make a difference! I have started eating kale and I'm shocked that I actually like it, but eating is still a struggle everyday. I know part of it is society, every time I turn on the news there are more stories about "pink slime" in our meat and arsenic in our apple juice (thanks Dr Oz for freaking me out!) so I don't know what to think. As a society we're much more aware of our food and everyone is an expert on what the "right" diet is. Meat or no meat? Do I go vegan and eliminate meat and dairy? I know processed food is bad but it's everywhere! Yet I look around at friends and colleagues as they down these very foods all the time and appear to be just fine. I do try and cook at least twice a week and generally Ross and I are pretty healthy, but everyone has their vices (my recent one is s'mores). And when I think about it, when I was in the hospital recovering from the stem cell transplant, they had no problems feeding me bacon and cheeseburgers.
And it doesn't end with the food...there was an article in a magazine recently about the BPA chemical in plastics and the type of plastics you shouldn't have in your house and how they (could) cause cancer. Yikes, that's all I needed to hear, I went like a crazy person through our cabinets and checked the bottom of each plastic container. A friend also mentioned to me that getting a fabric shower curtain instead of a plastic shower curtain might be a good idea because of the heat during the shower combined with the plastic could release bad chemicals. I took a few chemical ridden showers before I finally gave in and bought a fabric one and now I instantly feel better. I'm also in the process of trying to only buy non-toxic cleaning supplies because I clean our apartment every Sunday and have no idea what stuff I am breathing in. Plus there's the controversy about non-stick cooking pans and how they are bad for you....I could just go on and on...
Now I know what first time mothers feel like when they worry about their newborn baby and the toxic world...I can barely handle my anxiety about myself, so I can't imagine what I'll be like with a child! I miss my blissful days of munching on french fries without worrying about the oil it was fried in.
I try to comfort myself by thinking of uber healthy people that were also diagnosed with cancer --like Lance Armstrong and Sheryl Crow -- they both are the picture of health and yet it still happened. So I guess for some people it just happens, no matter what you do. I was shocked and devastated when one of my idols, Giuliana Rancic was diagnosed with breast cancer. I've been watching Giuliana's reality show since the beginning and cried as she fruitlessly tried to have a baby because I worry so much about my own fertility after this cancer crap. Although we're nowhere near ready to be parents now, Ross and I do want kids one day and as my treatment is prolonged, it makes me think about it even more (actually all the time). I had an ovary removed in 2010 to preserve my fertility but the procedure is still very new and nothing is guaranteed. Plus it doesn't help that a lot of my friends are having babies now. Sometimes it's hard to feel happy for them when they're experiencing something so joyful and I'm still experiencing something so horrible. Then I feel like an awful friend for my jealousy and resentment. It's a vicious cycle and I can only hope that having a baby will come easy after everything I've been through.
Anyway, watching Giuliana's struggle made me relate so much to her because she couldn't get what she wanted either. And when I watched her say she had breast cancer on the Today show, my heart dropped. I mean really? Hasn't she been through enough?? Life just isn't fair. Yet she's another example of a healthy person, she's works out and eats a clean diet and she was still diagnosed with a fairly aggressive breast cancer. So I just want to throw my hands up and say it's in God's hands, because anything can happen, no matter what you do to prevent it.