How to Cope With Emotions Through Cancer
A neutral third party. It helps to have the perspective of a neutral party to point out things you are most likely missing. Through thought work with a professional, I was able to discover that I held in my emotions, letting logic take over almost every time. I wasn’t allowing myself to feel sadness or grief. When a painful topic came up and I began to feel negative emotions, I unconsciously switched to my logical thinking, justifying what happened. I was justifying actions of others, trying to make sense of their positive intention (although it was painful for me) and therefore, dismissing how I felt. She pointed out what I was doing and that was a huge take away for me.
Find easy access sources. When working through your emotions solo, it is helpful to have aids like a meditation CD, the bible/religious texts, books or music. I am using a meditation CD by Belleruth Naparstek. The narrator guides the listener to invoke powerful images on one track and on the other, she recites affirmations. These tracks are said to affect the unconscious mind when sometimes conscious thinking cannot. You don’t need to pay perfect attention to these tracks. I have also played them at night as I fall asleep, letting the tracks loop repeatedly. Listening to these tracks can bring up unexpected emotions, with specific passages that trigger this. If possible, let these emotions surface. I found myself pulling over into a parking lot to cry for 15 minutes. After doing this, that specific sentence didn’t have the same affect anymore. I moved on.
Some of the topics she covers are:
OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder)
These are just a few of them. They are similar in nature, but I have 3 different CDs and each one has helped me in different ways. One evoked a peaceful environment that the other two didn’t. One guided imagery track is one I turn to the most, as it depicts an image with a fountain which I used during chemotherapy, my daily enemas, vitamin drip infusions, detox baths–basically anything that involved liquid. I found them comforting and different parts of the tracks seem to rotate in how strongly they brought up emotions. These emotions were both positive and negative.
Negative emotions. Acknowledge and accept negative emotions. Denying yourself acknowledgment of these emotions impairs the healing process. Allowing yourself to explore these emotions will help you get through them. Once you do, the pain will begin to diminish. This allows you to go through them, instead of pushing them away as they will only return. Just don’t dwell in the dark space for too long.
Positive emotions. Revel in the positive energy. There were times while listening to the tracks, I felt complete bliss. I felt loved, and surrounded by loving energy, happy and motivated to begin my day, optimistic and most of all gratitude. I had tears of joy. We need to properly acknowledge the positives. It is important to focus on gratitude, and not overlook positive energy. People tend to focus more on negative experiences than positive. Think of customer service or service at a restaurant. Complaints are filed much more often than praise. People are more likely to share an unpleasant experience with others. Reflect on the day, week and think of what you could be grateful for. Write it down, remember it, recall it, sit with that feeling, share it with others. Positive energy attracts more positive energy. This is also highly effective with music.
Reframing. Change your perception of it, maybe it's not as bad as you think. There is always something to be grateful for, no matter how small. For example, if I could not sleep, I have a couple remedies I turn to that usually work. I could be grateful that I came across turmeric paste and can make golden milk to fall asleep. If I didn't feel affected from missing some sleep, I am grateful for that. If I was doing a coffee enema that was more difficult to retain for the total amount of time, I would think to myself “This is good because it means it is effective. It is working to rid of whatever needs to be expelled.” Of course, this step is easier said than done. But with practice, just like anything else, you will train yourself to do this with more and more ease.