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Vegetarians in Paradise
Vegetarian Essays

Vegetarians in Paradise regularly presents informative articles by guest contributors on subjects of interest to vegetarians and vegans. This month Agi Barsi Lidle tells the story of her battle with cancer.

By printing Agi Barsi Lidle's story, Vegetarians in Paradise is not suggesting that the advice of doctors be ignored. Her change in diet and her alternative treatments have obviously helped her to regain her health.

Triumph over Cancer

A Natural Approach

By Agi Barsi Lidle

"Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're going to get." How right Forest Gump was. Just when we are batting 1000, by choosing our favorite pieces of chocolate, with confidence we choose another and bite into it. Yuk! it's awful. There is no polite way of spitting it out. We have to brave it, bear it, chew it, and get it down as quickly as we can--and then try again.

I bit into my least favorite chocolate four and one-half years ago. Spitting it out was not an option. I had to swallow it, digest it, and decide how to avoid ever biting into the same piece ever again.

On July 9, 1997 a phone call changed my life. "I'm sorry, Agi, you have breast cancer," said the radiologist. My emotions ran wild. First there was disbelief, then anger, and finally sadness.

After I learned that the prognosis was poor for this type of breast cancer, I intuitively knew I had to try an approach other than traditional methods. Within days of the diagnosis I learned about the "Incurables Program." My inspiration to follow this program was a young woman's healing story. She was in her 20's and diagnosed with breast cancer. She also chose the "Incurables Program" and within a few months was healed. I knew that if she could do it, I could also! From that moment on I knew, without a shadow of a doubt, I would be healed too.

Agi Barsi Lidle The next day after my decision I called all three of my doctors. My primary care physician had not thought anything was wrong with my breast until my third visit when I finally said, "If this was your breast what would you do?" I had physical signs something was wrong. My nipple became inverted, and I had puckering along side of it. She finally wrote me a prescription to get a mammogram. Her answer to my decision to treat myself was, "I think it's stupid." My radiologist and surgeon both couldn't believe my decision.

For the next week they kept calling me trying to convince me to change my mind. I wouldn't change my mind and asked them to stop calling me.

Before cancer, I knew nothing about natural health and healing. My diet consisted mostly of fast foods, including meat almost every day. I used to think vegetarians were weirdos, and it was abnormal not to eat meat. Many times out of my mouth came, "I would never become a vegetarian."

Never say never, because my healing journey began by eliminating meat, dairy, and sugar from my diet. Instead, I nourished my body with fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and seeds. Amazingly, my husband Bill supported me in my decision to heal from cancer naturally. Within two weeks, he also eliminated meat from his diet. Wow! What a drastic adjustment for both of us!

With powerful herbal formulas, cold sheet treatments (hydrotherapy), Native American black salve and undoubting faith, I eliminated cancer within six months of the diagnosis. My latest test results were outstanding. The only physician I called back was my radiologist. She did say that she also believes and does herbs herself! After completing my healing program my nipple was no longer inverted.

Learning how to cook was my biggest challenge. Before cancer, the kitchen was foreign to me. Today, passion for creating delicious and colorful vegetarian recipes energizes me. I spend much of my time teaching cooking and un-cooking classes in my home.

Looking back over the past four and a half years, I can honestly say that cancer was a blessing. The experience empowered me to see and live life differently. Cancer forced me to face the emotional chains keeping me from living a healthy and fulfilled life. The biggest chain to be broken was un-forgiveness. Forgiving all those who I held resentment (and even hate) for was a biggie. Before lasting healing could occur, I knew forgiveness was imperative. Cancer also made me take a good look at myself, so I could be more forgiving of myself by treating myself with the same kindness I show others and having as much joy for myself as I had for others. Cancer also forced me to let go and give my fears to God and allow Him take the burden from my shoulders.

Cancer doesn't scare me anymore. Keeping steps ahead of it is the key. Knowing how to release negative emotions and how to build a strong immune system is important. A friend once said, "Life and the art of living it is not in the arrival or departure; it's in the journey."

Today I feel so empowered yet humble knowing how marvelous the human body is and, when given the chance, can heal itself. I always ponder the idea that a lizard can regrow its tail. Why can't we do even more?

Agi Barsi Lidle tells her healing story in her book Triumph over Cancer, A Natural Approach. She may be contacted at ABLHEALTH@aol.com

Click here for past Words from Other Birds Articles

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