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Copperwoman's Story September, 2004

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September 2, 2004 • Dancin'

Tonight I picked up Raven and we went to Debbie Nargi-Brown's African Dance Class. We danced! Thought I was gonna do some "old lady dancin" but for the most part I turned up the energy. It felt so good to dance. I was a bit worried that I could get sick but I chose "love rather than fear" and put my heart into dancing. It did remind me to pace myself and that was all that was really needed.

I have been sharing my story with the class on my monthly-or-so visits to Santa Cruz since before surgery in July. They have been part of the healing circle of light and love that surrounds me so strongly. People reached out to me tonight. They acknowledged the miracle of my dancing on the dance floor just a week and 2 days after chemo. Spirit is using me to inspire and set good example for the power of healing light and love. A woman I sang to years ago when she had cancer and was hanging on by a golden thread--gifted me with a beautiful batik wall hanging. Here is is as it hangs on the wall in my room.

Debbie offered me to sing a song. I was directed and knew what I had to sing. A song to strengthen the prayer, the resolve and the union of dancing souls.

It is one of the last songs I wrote:

I release what I don't need any more
I release what I don't need any more
chorus: Let it fall away, fall away, fall away
fall away, fall away (2x)
2. Came for a reason, now it can go (2x)
3. My cells are changing with my every breath (2x)
4. My cells are changing with in my breast (2x)
5. I give thanks for this gift brought to my door
6. It brought me the work I came here for
End: And what is left after it falls away?
My center, my core, my service to the divine

A couple of weeks ago, I sang this at Dance Church, reaching out in that circle too. Opening to love is so wonderful.

All in gratitude
Copperwoman

September 5, 2004 • I waken with love

I waken
with "I love"
emerging from my lips.
That is our only job
It encompasses all.
And the only
necessary thing.
I continually
awaken
into love.
My heart is joyful.
I am
grateful.
Living is
truthful.
This—
is powerful.

September 14, 2004 • A tear rises and falls

A tear rises from somewhere
deep within
I don't comprehend
As I focus on gratitude
And the gift of all that is happening.
And yet it rises anyway
It has its own life
I won't deny it.
Raw emotion
of a being made raw
by surrendering to a system
that is there to cure.
My white blood cell count
did not rise
and my hair falls.
This is some sort of
limbo place
in the middle of
the parts of self that are dying
and those being reborn.

This morning I sit at a table with a view out of the window of the city of San Francisco. I arrived here Sunday night (today is Tuesday) with Kephra, a friend from high school 35 years ago. We attended a conference together this past weekend, "Cancer As A Turning Point." It was dynamic--with wonderful speakers and performers. An inspiration of people surviving and THRIVING from cancer and other life threatening illnesses. One speaker at the conference was a woman who was given a 2% chance to live. Dynamic conference that confirmed to me that I am on the right track. How powerful are our thoughts and wills.

Back to now. I sit in Jeannie Blamey and family's house--here on the hill in SF. Another woman I was friends with 35 years ago in High School. My daughter Jody met us here on Sunday. Yesterday she took me to UCSF to have my 2nd chemo "light" infusion. I had my blood drawn, met with the nurse and headed upstairs to infusion. When we met with Catherine, my infusion nurse, she had my blood work results in her hand. Wasn't such good news as my white blood cell count was about 1/2 what they wanted it to be in order to do chemo. The decision was made to give me an injection of neupogen. This is a substance that has the ability to raise the white blood cell count within 24 hours--it activates a process in the bone marrow to create white blood cells, if I understand correctly. She sent me away in hopes that when I would return the next morning, the results of my blood work would allow chemo to happen.

I spent much of the night awake, being a cheerleader for those white blood cells to increase. I will find out in a couple of hours if it worked.

To backtrack a little--Kate Munger and a friend had offered to come and sing to me during chemo "light." I was able to catch Kate on her cell phone before they came to the hospital. She offered to keep our singing date to help raise that white blood cell count and we met in the rose garden in Golden Gate Park. Kate brought her portable recliner and laid me down. They then proceeded to sing beautiful songs to me. The first song was a favorite, "I am sending you light" and I ended up joining in a 3 part harmony. What beauty and love! The time flew and before we knew it, it was time to go. I feel so blessed to be receiving all of the juicy love coming my way and it has been something new and blessed to be the one being sung to. I am so grateful.

Just a note about my hair. It has been coming out for about 6 days now. And, as I thought I would, I am experiencing it totally. I see hairs here and there and all around--the ones from my head--heading for the ground. I have been taking pictures and quicktime videos of the process to create my own documentary. It's wild and funny but I have to admit, it is getting a bit freaky. I can see why people just crop it close before they leave their trail everywhere they go.

The glow of love and prayer around me has been incredible--powerful--bright--rich--bountiful--healing...I know that I am constantly surrouned by angels and loving beings. Thank you all once again for being in my "bleachers" and cheering me on.
Love,
Copperwoman

September 15, 2004 • Miracle White Blood Count

The night of the day that I got the news about the white blood cell count I didn't sleep much. I was up hourly and whenever I was awake, I just visualized, sang to and prayed for the white blood cell count to rise. So I went in around 10:30 in the morning, about 24 hours after the shot of neupogen. The count went from .76 to 18! My mom told me she was praying for it to go through the roof and it surely did. The nurse was quite surprised and even tho I had put so much energy into the rise, I still was not sure I would be having my chemo that day. It was very amazing--and it was able to happen. I also made it through the emotion of the falling hair. It is kinda nice to become bald gradually. I am getting more used to it every day. Here is what I look like today:

OK, just had to follow up on yesterday's story.
cw

September 22, 2004 • Feelin' Good

It has been a week and a day since Chemo "Light." Post chemo days were easier this time. The best part for me is that I didn't have to take the anti-nausea drugs. It was wonderful to get away without those side effects. At times, I felt slightly queezy, but some ginger tea and eating helped. Speaking of eating, it is harder to do these days. Usually, nothing sounds too appetizing. I have to make the effort to sit in front of food and eat it.

I have had a lot of energy. In fact, the day after chemo I was feeling so good, I had a day-long fantasy of going to Earthdance. It was fun to dream. By the next day I was brought back to reality as I was feeling very tired and slept much of the day--after an early appointment with Raven and her needles. I also went straight to see Raven from chemo at which time she cupped me again, drawing out the unneeded poison. There was still plenty left to transform those "other" cells, that is, if there are any left.

I am doing a very funny thing. From the first day of losing my hair, I have been documenting it with quicktime videos. There I am, in front of my digital camera, talking totally spontaneously about the process of losing my hair. It is interesting to watch how the mood changes as more falls out. Todays clip is about hats. I already have quite a collection of hats but this has given me an excuse to go "shopping!" You can view my latest hat and a few other pictures by clicking on the picture just below.

This picture was taken today. As you can see, I have lost more, but not all of my hair. I am very curious to see if it will all fall out or whether I will keep just this crop of "baby" hair. I think that most people cut or buzz their hair before it falls out. So just as I thought I would, I am experiencing it totally as it happens with no intention to cut any of it. We'll see.

Here is a poem I wrote about it a few days ago.

9/19/04
I didn't know
I was going
to lose my hair.
When I left there
Besides
I was only coming
for two months
guess I had to tell myself that
in order
to leave.
Once again
i am spread
from here to there.
Last time, however
I left "here"
and it was the other
way around.
It's helping me
to lose attachment
for where I am
rather,
the focus is on
where I dwell
And I dwell in gratitude
in the temple of spirit
surrounded by angels

with love,
Copperwoman

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