Press = Ginny Fraser: Times article on healing holistically (29/01/06)        
 
 

The Sunday Times January 29, 2006

A Life in the Day


Ginny Fraser
Interview: Rose Shepherd



In 2001, at the age of 43, Ginny Fraser was diagnosed with metastasised skin cancer and told that she might live for six months. The cancer is now in remission thanks, she believes, to a holistic healing approach. She is a writer, a facilitator and a coach for people with cancer, and lives in Surrey
Anybody who has recovered from cancer is supposed to wake up in the morning and say: "I cherish every day!" At first it was like that, but now life is much the way it's always been. Being seriously ill really clears the mental crap. When you're not sure if you're going to live, you stop thinking: "I'm too fat, I haven't got enough money, I haven't got a boyfriend." But all those issues came back with a vengeance when I got better. I wake up at about 7.30 and do 15 minutes of spiritual exercises, which involve meditation and inward chanting.



I am a Christian, but my spiritual practice is a combination of Christianity and a traditional eastern belief in reincarnation.

I moved out of London last year, and it's much nicer and healthier waking up in the country. I take a multivitamin before breakfast, which is usually muesli, fruit and yogurt, everything organic.

I take maybe 10 other supplements: something alkalising, digestive enzymes and immune boosters. When I was really sick I was taking up to 216 tablets a day, prescribed by my naturopathic doctor.

I also make a juice most days, with a base of carrots, then beetroot, apple, ginger and sometimes garlic. Every day I have a coffee enema. I really love them. I might even be a bit addicted, because they provide this wonderful capsule of time to read or just get some space. Normally an enema takes half an hour. I use organic coffee Fairtrade, of course. You can buy a special enema blend, which isn't drinkable, but I usually use Guatemalan, which is. I put the pot on to brew, and people come in and say: "Mmm, lovely smell of coffee." Little do they know! You let the coffee cool to body heat, then deliver it via a bucket and tube. It helps the liver to release toxins through the bile ducts into the bowel.

My work is in personal development, coaching, training, running workshops on change management, leadership and team-building, which might take me to London three days a week. I usually drive. I lost my licence when I had a brain tumour but I have it back now, which is just as well, as I live in the middle of nowhere.

I also work from home, mentoring people with cancer. It seems there's a real benefit for people in just having the opportunity to talk about their treatment, or their tumours, with someone who isn't going to freak out. I know a lot about cancer treatments, particularly alternative approaches, so we discuss options and taking positive action.

People need to be aware that there are choices, not just in what they do about their cancer, but in their attitudes and ways of proceeding with their lives. I contribute to Icon magazine (Integrated Cancer and Oncology News), reporting on breakthroughs in cancer treatment or new alternative therapies. I am also developing a workshop on cancer prevention. I want to work more with human-resources directors, because people in organisations often don't know how to react when an employee gets a cancer diagnosis.

I feel like an old hand at cancer. In 1993 I had a malignant mole removed. Then three years later I had a lymph node removed from under my arm. And five years after that, I was diagnosed with tumours to the brain, lungs, spleen and stomach. My vision had started to go weird and I was tired. I had a whole-body scan and a brain scan, tootled back for the results and
they said: "You've got about six months to live."

They put me on high-dose steroids to stop the brain tumour from swelling, so I turned into a big, bloated thing, and the only treatment offered was
radiotherapy to the brain. I made a fuss, saying I wanted stereotactic [pinpoint] radiotherapy. I told the doctor I'd heard whole-brain radiotherapy could increase the risk of Alzheimer's. She said: "Well, maybe in five years' time..." I said: "So in five years I could get Alzheimer's?" And she said: "Are you being realistic?" like, I wouldn't be alive in five years, so why was I worrying?

Now, more than four years on, if I forget something or lose a word, I worry that it's creeping dementia. I didn't have any treatment for the tumours, except to the brain, but as well as the raw juices, enemas and tablets, I had lots of prayers said for me. No doctor has asked me how I did it. They called it "spontaneous remission".

I try to spend some time every day outdoors. I heard some wacky therapist say that the vibration of green is very healing, so I get out and walk, and go to see the ponies in the field out the back.

I try to swim every week and I get on the rebounder to bounce my lymph around. A shiatsu guy comes to the house every fortnight. He said the sense he had was that my energy was depleted, but that over time it's been increasing. Last August I was trekking in the Himalayas, so I guess my energy isn't too bad! At night, my friend and housemate Stacey and I cook our own food but eat together. She has Weight Watchers ready meals and I eat my fresh, organic stuff. Then, if I'm home, I'll read or watch TV.
I go to bed about 11.30.

Every night we say a prayer, to ask the Spirit, or the light of love, to
fill, surround and protect us, and to lift everything negative from the
day. We send healing light to anyone who's sick or who needs help, and send the light ahead into the next day.