Baldies' Blog began originally in the UK by a 26 year old journalist with a blood cancer on a mission to inform the world about bone marrow donation.

He has since died, and I took on the cause of making cancer care more transparent for everybody.

Cancer is a disease that will touch everybody through diagnosis or affiliation: 1 in 2 men will be diagnosed and 1 in 3 woman will hear those words, "You Have Cancer."

I invite you to read how I feel along my journey and
how I am continuing to live a full life alongside my Hodgkin's lymphoma, with me controlling my cancer, not my cancer controlling me.

I hope that "Baldies' Blog" will prepare you to handle whatever life sends you, but especially if it's the message, "You Have Cancer."

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Monday, November 10, 2008

Owner's Manual to My Brain

I’ve been infused with a crier. I’m absolutely sure of this. I am not, and have never been, a teary emotional girl.
I sure as hell am now. Don’t tell me how excited you are to see me and how much you missed me unless you want to see some water works.
Thankfully, I have an owner’s manual to my brain.
I found it collecting dust in my closet upstairs with all my other forgotten textbooks.
I’m hoping the manual to my son is hiding somewhere in there too, but I just can’t seem to find it. I must have placed it beside the directory to my husband’s inner workings.
Ooops. Those are somethings I wish I hadn’t lost, but of all the things I’ve lost, I miss my mind the most.
Thank goodness for the manual. Maybe my brain is not lost, it needs to be fixed.
I did read about one of the coolest concepts I have ever considered in my brain manual.
If I can explain this concept, and you think it’s as great as I do, I’m going to name myself Queen Geek and nominate myself for teacher of the year.
It’s called “Psychoneuroimmunology.” Yes, I am in love with this concept. We’ll call it PNI so it sounds more friendly.
The idea is guided by the “feedback loop” between the brain and the immune system.
The brain emits chemicals under stress and depress the immune function leading to disease (Stress= Disease)
The immune system produces chemicals (ex. Lymphokines from the thymus) that cause depression (Disease=Stress)
It’s proven the immune system has the same receptors as brain cells, the inverse is also true, the immune system can produce the same hormones as the brain.
WHOA! WHAT? This is crazy talk. My immune system alone can produce hormones? I’ve never heard this.
Whose hormones do I have now?! I’m going to try not to worry about it, and enjoy the ups and downs of someone else’s cellular memory.
I have a newfound fondness of danishes, perfume, and the French language. I’m taking my shopping and styling to the next level, which may indicate a couture brand of stem cells. We’ll wait and see.
Also, the immune system has attack cells, aptly named, NATURAL KILLER CELLS, that can fluctuate in effectiveness 50% due to psychological factors.
You can thank Pittsburgh Cancer Institute for this study.
Yes, I have natural born killers in me.
Best of all, for results, it only takes 5 minutes to detect brain wave changes. Translated, you can train your brain in 5 minutes!!!
If only this could be translated into consistent practice. I know it can be, with humor and understanding. People are all ready starting to make changes.
The cancer centers I’ve attended have massages, Reiki, laughing yoga, creative arts centers, and inspirational speakers just based on common sense that these are good things for people.
Imagine how things would change with just a little scientific evidence.

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