Over the last few days I have hesitated about writing about this topic. Last week we learned my Mom has cancer. Stage 4 breast cancer that has metastasized to be exact. This was unexpected to say the least; initially just taking my Mom in to check on her after a slight fall and to test for what appeared to be merely some dehydration.
An occasional trip to the ER has not been unusual for my Mom. There have been a few times over the most recent years my Mom had concerns for one reason or another that had led to a visit to the emergency room. Usually after checking on the initial scare that brought her to the hospital my Mom was discharged and sent home with an antibiotic or tests that assured there was no concern beyond 'normal, age related' concerns.
This time it was different. After 9 days, many blood tests, ct scans, x-rays, MRI's and ultrasounds they found my Mom has cancer. She has a huge mass on her breast which has metastasized into her brain, bones, lungs and lymph nodes. The confusion I observed in my Mom that led to her stay in the hospital was clearly more than dehydration or a UTI.
I feel like I have lost my Mom overnight. The sharp, feisty person I have always known to be my mother has been replaced by someone scared, angry, and confused at her worst and vague and passive at her best. During my many hours sitting next to her in the hospital to ensure she was resting I did what comes naturally and provides me the most comfort, I began reading and researching. I also watched the Netflix documentary Stink.
Watching Stink I thought about being in this place with my Mom. Could this have been prevented? What would my Mom now face as a result? Why has cancer become so common? How is it possible that half the women who receive treatment for breast cancer get it a second time? I found it crazy to hear them cite statistics of over 280 chemicals being found in the umbilical cord of newborns. Meaning that our children are being born with a toxic load that is dangerous for any adult, much less a newborn baby, and that's often just the beginning.
Sometimes people will question the price of my products and I find myself somewhere between offended and not sure how to feel about their response. I recognize however most people don't understand quality skincare and its ingredients. It's all about re-education.
First off I use quality ingredients not cheap chemical substitutes, I source my ingredients from companies that I research and look for those whose methods are in alignment with my beliefs. Eco friendly, sustainable, pure, unprocessed or minimal processing, as close to home whenever possible. As Joel Salatin taught in the documentary Food Inc. I vote with my dollars when choosing my sources to further encourage the world by my design.
Secondly, I list all my Ingredients and offer full transparency. Did you know in the European Union there are over 1200 banned chemicals and in the US there are under 10? Further there are NO laws in the US that state a company needs to disclose its ingredients to you. They are allowed by law to choose not to disclose under the protection of proprietary information. The Food and Drug administration does not work to change this rather many of its members are paid as lobbyists by big corporations.
Why is this important? Because cancer, because thyroid disease, because autoimmune disease. All these diseases, and more, that were not rampant 20 years ago like they are today. Diseases and conditions that are indicators that there is a problem somewhere and we can't rule anything out. Because informed consumers wouldn't likely put this stuff on their bodies if they knew the outcome. Anyone who might get sick from something they put on their bodies deserves to at a minimum make that choice knowingly.
Lastly, the implications of the few independent studies that have been done are very very serious. It's not that studies haven't been done, just not independent studies. That means studies by someone whose self interest is not involved; studies where the person doing it isn't making money off of it or being paid by someone who is.
The biggest problem beyond even the initial disease that can be caused is the fact that many chemicals currently used, are not only damaging, but mutagenic. That means they do damage to you and then they mutate so what your child gets in DNA is now forever changed and they can have a greater susceptibility to disease.
As I travel this path with my Mom's newly diagnosed disease I am thankful for many things. I am thankful she has had a good long life. I am thankful to know ahead of time and become newly present to my Mom and appreciate our quality of time. I am thankful she has shared with me her tenacity and drive and inquisitive nature. I am thankful for the people by whom I am surrounded who offer up wisdom and hope for my Mom even at almost 88 years of life. I am also thankful for renewed passion and drive for my vision and mission for Three Bees.
We no longer can afford to believe some poorly overseen government agency will hold companies accountable to our good health. We need to re-educate ourselves and take an active role in our healthcare. We need to be activists and wellness warriors and truth seekers. With statistic of 1 in 2 men and 1 in 2-1/2 women getting cancer the time is now. And that's just cancer. What are you waiting for? The time is of the essence, the time is now. It's time to 'bee' chemical free. It's time to get on the court in the game of wellness.