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A Path for Healing - by Jennifer Dickenson

Before Jennifer Dickenson was diagnosed with brain cancer, she was a busy and stressed-out lawyer. With two elementary school-aged children and a supportive husband, she vowed to do everything she could to improve her odds. She wrote a book called "A Case for Hope" to share her learnings about restoring health.

Making changes in our lives that support health

I believe we can heal many kinds of illnesses if we are willing to make fundamental changes in our lives that support health instead of degrading it. As a result of my health journey fighting brain cancer, grade 4 (glioblastoma), I discovered that using healing techniques, mind, body, and spirit, can be critical when it comes to supporting health and wellbeing.

My basic premise is that if we can get sick, why can’t we also become well again. The evidence is right in front of us as we do this all the time. When we get a cold, for example, we drink more water or tea, we have more soup and healthier foods to eat, we stay in bed and get more rest and then we start feeling better. Ultimately, we get back to our old selves once again.

If you have a broken bone, the doctor might set the bone so it doesn’t move but typically, your body will do the healing. Your job will be to elevate your leg, be gentle with it and let the natural healing process happen.

But so often, when we are diagnosed with a serious illness, we throw this wisdom out of the window and listen only to the doctor’s plan which might include surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy or other strong medicine built to attend to the illness. Sometimes these protocols support slowing down the illness but not healing it outright.

Our own role in healing

Although I am ever grateful for the advances in care at the hands of our doctors, I do believe that traditional medical treatment is a portion of healing, not the sole source of how we can heal. It is my view that we have an important role to play in our own health if our goal is to create permanent healing, free of drugs or medicine.

When I was diagnosed, I started to learn about individual tools that could help support my health. But something incredible happened. As I began to amass even more techniques, I realized that the aggregate of these tools was creating an undeniable path to health, wellness, and balance in my life. What an awakening that was! Flooding your body with positive healing approaches can help us heal better than not using them.

The 4 key aspects of healing

I now believe the key aspects of healing include:

  1. decreasing inflammation in the body (allowing your immune system to focus on threats that damage health),

  2. increasing your immune system ( so it can fight illness, bacteria, infection, and cancer),

  3. maintaining a balanced nervous system (so you remain calm and avoid inflammation and unhealthy thinking) and

  4. creating oxygenation in your body which supports blood flow to your cells, tissues, and organs.

The usage of mind, body, and spirit are the conduits for these key healing systems.

Examples include clean water, quality sleep, clean food, breathing techniques, meditation, qigong, joyfulness, music, reducing judgment, creating perspective, exploring faith and our souls…just to name a few. In these cases, studies have shown a direct correlation between the usage of these tools toward positive health outcomes.

Because these changes can make us feel so good, and impact our health profoundly, it’s not hard to maintain this path permanently- in fact, that’s the goal.

Two final points to think about when it comes to healing

1) If someone is dealing with a health challenge, only that person can make the fundamental changes that can move them from illness to wellness. No one can engage your will except for you; and,

2) For those who are dealing with illness (cancer or other illnesses), there is a timing element regarding healing that doesn’t apply to healthy people that are simply exploring this healing path. If you are ill now, even with your doctor’s protocol, it will be important to start incorporating as many of these tools as possible. Even though these tools are supportive of health, you should check with your doctor any time you make significant changes to your health that might contradict a program you are following with your doctor.

There are many opportunities to improve your situation when it comes to health. I encourage you to stay curious and open to what may be possible for you.


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