health, holistic health, ovarian cancer, positivity, yoga

Do You ‘Self-Destruct’?

Have you ever slipped into ‘self-destruction’ mode when what you really needed was ‘self-care’?

I certainly have…and more recently than you might think!

Lately I’ve found myself making all kinds of excuses for this – ‘I’ve lost a lot of weight I should eat high calorie processed food to regain it’ – ‘my body is tired, it’s ok to eat sugar’ – ‘I’m too exhausted to go out in nature today’ – and you should see my Amazon purchases after a hospital admission!…yes all books but no definitely not ones I needed!

All of these were excuses for not supporting my body, mind and spirit to properly recover. Instead I was giving myself a hard time, not acknowledging reality and, in fact, making my situation worse through self-judgment rather than much needed self-love.

Realisation, finally, hit me yesterday when I said to my nurse “I’m just too tired to do anything” – now, firstly, dramatic statements like this (in my experience) are usually just excuses and secondly, her reply was the wake up all I needed.

She reminded me what I’ve been through lately: 9 weeks of vomiting; 10 days in and out of hospital; two stone weight loss; an abdominal drain of malignant fluid; being told my cancer had spread (again); an IV of two broad spectrum antibiotics for a week; unable to eat for over a month; starting an immunotherapy trial…need I go on?

I realised that despite all of this happening, what I hadn’t done was give myself the necessary time to properly understand the effect this has had on my emotional and spiritual health.

Yes I’d started lots of self care practices – yoga, acupuncture, reiki, reflexology, Body Stress Release etc but I had done so with the frustrated mentality of ‘why isn’t it fixed yet?!’

What I’d needed to do instead was to treat the wounded parts of myself with care and compassion (like you would a small child – a friend recently suggested)

So yesterday I embraced what these parts needed (in particular after a long day in hospital getting dose two of my immunotherapy) – an afternoon cuddling my hubby in the sofa with Ozzy watching comedies…tick!

Then today I did the same. I didn’t get up at the crack of dawn like usual but instead had a lazy morning getting up only in time for my medication; then I sat about in my pjs eating a leisurely breakfast while watching Ted talks before me and Ozzy set out for a long walk in nature just the two of us – allowing me some valuable alone time in nature.

It feels so refreshing to be giving myself ‘permission’ to acknowledge that I am wounded rather than fighting this reality with frustration. In doing so, I am allowing myself the time it takes to truly heal and become whole again.

I wonder if you’ve acknowledged the wounds you’ve gained recently or in the past and if you’ve given yourself permission to take the time and space you need(ed) to heal?

Or perhaps you can relate to being in the ‘self-destruct’ mode through diet, exercise, indulgent or impulsive shopping, self judgement or anything else?

I’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences.

Love and light, Fi xxx

ovarian cancer

Love Organic

I’m not going to be one of those people who preaches that everyone should be vegan…even I LOVE meat…

However(!)…I do preach that people should eat with a responsibility for the source of their food and the treatment of the animals before they become meat AND the treatment of the farmers.


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I only eat organic not only because of all of the toxic chemicals, antibiotics, hormones, pesticides (and so on) added to non organic food but also because it makes it easier to trace the source of my food and, in doing so, allows me to take responsibility for its impact on the environment.

Similarly I only eat whole foods and make everything from fresh ingredients so that I know, without any doubt, the source of everything that I eat.

I am dairy and gluten free due to allergies and, although I follow a plant based diet I am only 99% vegan. When I do eat meat I ensure it is organic, and when I eat fish I ensure it is wild (never farmed).

I could probably write a book on the research I have done into food in the last year as it is an area I am extremely passionate about, however I won’t go on and on in this post (although questions are welcome). What I will say is that I know organic is more expensive and yes our household food bill has risen this past year HOWEVER is it a small price to pay for health? ABSOLUTELY!

For me it’s just about priorities and I prioritise knowing exactly what is in the food I eat. We live in a society where we find it acceptable to spend £3 on a takeaway coffee but won’t pay £2 for organic eggs. Seriously!?

It is my firm belief that the food you eat defines your health.

This is why, this year, hubby and I will begin growing as much of our own food as possible using our existing greenhouse and also installing a mini polly tunnel.

Join me in choosing organic food, taking responsibility for your impact on the environment and having consideration for the animals and farmers involved in the food industry.

It doesn’t need to mean your outgoings each month are any more…it just might mean one less takeaway coffee or one less glass of wine (for example)…

Could you go organic?

Love and light, Fi xx

You can read more about Fi Munro on her website and public Facebook page.

She is also on twitter, instagram and youtube.

She is currently writing a book due for release in 2017.

© FKMunro.com 2017

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Raising Awareness – Woman’s Health

During my recent hospital admission ‘Woman’s Health’ – a website dedicated to providing women advice on a range of female health issues, picked up one of my blog posts featured on Ovarian Cancer Action and published it for their readers (in their own words).

Why Ovarian Cancer Remains Difficult to Diagnose

Together we will raise more awareness about Ovarian Cancer.

Love and light, Fi xxx

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Did you know smear tests DO NOT screen for Ovarian Cancer?

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“The Cancer Whisperer”: Chemo 4 – Day 20

Today I was feeling much more tired than normal…a sacrifice I’d made after some early birthday celebrations with friends last night. Which, as a side note, was a lovely evening and exactly what I needed. The restaurant even surprised me with a birthday cake and balloons 💜

Anyway….I digress…

As a result I wasn’t up to doing much today and so spent most of the day reading a new book that I’d bought under the recommendation of a friend – “The Cancer Whisperer” by Sophie Sabbage.

Well, the book is incredible…I’m already nearly half way through it!

Since my diagnosis I’ve read lots of books about cancer. These range from books written by Drs or researchers or even survivors. This book was different though. It was the first time I’ve read a book by a person who still has cancer. A person who, like me, is living with stage four cancer and is aware that, medically speaking, her cancer is ‘incurable’.

More importantly, however, despite this (or perhaps because of this…) she shares my positive outlook on life.

It was so inspiring for me to read her story and her approach to her diagnosis. I felt every word on the page spoke to my soul. Whilst reading her words, I was no longer the ‘unique case’ my oncologist and surgeon describe, but instead I felt like I was reading the words of a kindred spirit.

There is so much comfort in knowing that there is someone else in the world with stage four cancer who isn’t giving in to nor fighting (a term I loath!) the disease but is instead letting it allow her to grow as a person whilst healing her life. I am sure (or at least hope) that there are many others who share our outlook but, whilst I have read the positive outlooks of people who have recovered from stage 1, 2 or 3 cancer, stage 4 cancer patients don’t often appear to share this outlook…or indeed share their story…with others.

The thing that resonated with me most in her book is the emphasis she places on taking control of your disease and taking ownership of the decisions being made. This is also encouraged by Kelly A Turner in her book “Radical Remission”  and something I do without thought – I mean why wouldn’t I want to know everything there is to know about my illness whilst also being involved in the decisions about my treatment and care. However, I am becoming increasingly aware that this is not something I share with all cancer patients and this unsettles me. How can people be expected to heal without all the information? Sometimes people don’t even want to know what stage their cancer is – I can’t relate to this at all. I want to know everything…I mean everything!… about my illness and possible treatment. However, when I recently asked one of the surgeons if I could see my scan results I was told that I was the first person ever to ask. Ever?!

I’ve found that whilst my Drs are initially surprised by my calm and rational (and often emotionally detached) questioning, they also appear refreshed by the opportunity to talk openly about my illness with me in a way in which I am made to feel welcomed as a contributor rather than a bystander. However, I still have the impression that they hold back, perhaps unsure if my ’emotional detachment’ is denial or a front – it is in fact neither and merely an ability I hold to detach myself and reserve dealing with the information emotionally at a later stage (usually once I am home and talking through the facts with my husband). I hope that as I progress through my journey that my Drs become more comfortable with sharing information about me with me (ironic really when you think about it).

I truely feel that one of the most valuable lessons from my journey is to take total ownership of my health. I can only hope that in the future integrated, person-centred treatment of cancer patients will have become the norm in cancer care.

Love and light, Fi xx 

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The benefits of exercise… 

After years of doing research and writing research papers I’ve now been given the opportunity to be in one…Macmillan are doing a national study to look at the affects of exercise on cancer treatment and prognosis.

To do this they have employed and trained personal trainers across the UK to work with cancer patients to develop a specialist program of exercise. In Scotland they are working in Aberdeen, Glasgow, Dundee and the Borders. Patients involved in the study will be given 12 free sessions and then unlimited sessions for a low fee each month for the rest of their lives. In exchange their fitness, response to treatment and side affects to cancer and treatment will be monitored every three months. The results of the study will be published by Macmillan later next year. It is hoped that the evidence will demonstrate that exercise has a positive impact on all aspects of a cancer patient’s care, their response to treatment, and whether or not they relapse. If proven effective, this scheme will be spread across other areas.

I feel both honoured and privileged to have been asked to be a part of this study. Not only will it allow me to bring back one of the joys in my life but it also gives me an opportunity to play an active part in the growing research in the importance of providing holistic patient care. More importantly it enables me to be a part of shaping what holistic cancer care may look like in the future.

I am really excited about this opportunity and hope to see some good results in recovering my fitness, strength and lung capacity.

Watch this space…

love and light, Fi xx