How far?

 ~ painting detail: Solar eclipse, Howard Russell Butler, 1923.

~ painting detail: Solar eclipse, Howard Russell Butler, 1923.

How far do you go from what you believe? How far do you go from what you've always known? So many times during treatment I had to close my eyes and do what I was told. But there were times I had to draw the line. And it's usually when every cell in my body was screaming.
Not having breast reconstruction was one of those moments. I had to fight so hard to not have a cosmetic procedure that had zero priority on my personal healing choice and process. Now I am facing one more of those moments.
I am supposed to start a 5 year hormonal treatment. 5 years taking a prescription drug that can create havoc in my body. I stopped at the pharmacy, picked up the pills and left it by my bed side. But I cannot make myself take this drug. Every cell in my body is screaming. The laundry list of side effects too many to count. So, what do I do? Close my eyes for 5 years & pretend nothing is happening? I am being told: "Suck it up, that's what you need to do. The breast cancer you had was ER/PR positive. So hormone levels were directly connected to the tumor growth. You have to take it." But It is not just about side effects. After 9 months of cancer treatment side effects become part of life. I can suck it up. Believe me. It's about something else. It's about refusing to believe that a natural hormone created in a woman's body is suddenly the cause of cancer. And should be suppressed with a prescription drug even though it will take your hormonal system further away from any natural balance. Just close your eyes, ignore your entire hormonal system, and believe this drug is protective of your health. And don't worry about the very small chance of this drug giving you other types of cancer. It's very slim." That is what I am being told. How far do I go from what I believe? How far do I go from what I've always known? Once again I am drawing the line. I've decided I will not take this drug. Every cell in my body is screaming: there is another way! So here it is to one more life and death decision. And nobody can stop you because the consequences are absolutely and only yours.