Tuesday, July 29, 2014

That “not so favourite” teacher and my Bucket List

Many people have that teacher who really made a positive impact on their life.  For me, it was my Biology teacher, who I will call Mr. Cool-guy, to protect the innocent.  He was a young man at the time, though I never saw that or realized it.  But he had kids younger than me so he must have been young, right?  

Mr. Cool-guy's style was very engaging and he was patient in his way of teaching.  Even when he was angry at you, he was nice about it.  Never yelled or belittled you.  A really cool guy and he inspired me.

But what about that teacher who scarred you for life?  That one that STILL makes you cringe when you occasionally are reminded of that person?  I have one of those.  She was my Music teacher in grades 5 and 6.  Thankfully, I left her behind because grades 7-12 were in the high school which was a different building altogether!

I have 2 nasty memories of her that stick out.  The one that was pivotal for me happened in Grade 5.  I truly feel this was the start of my lack of self-esteem.  It was time for choir tryouts and I was so excited!  I loved singing so much and I really don’t know if I could sing or not.  I was an empty vessel that wanted to be filled with music and I so wanted to be in the choir. 

I come from a musical family.  All my aunts and uncles on my mom’s side are musical.  Piano players, guitar players, singers and accordion players, to name a few.  You name it, and someone could play it.  Many of the offspring of this clan also have the musical bug.  My Aunt C. has 2 sons who played in bands their wholes lives, drumming and singing and playing whatever need to be played.  And still do.

I too, had the musical bug, or at least I believe I did.  But along came The Exterminator, the Crusher of Hopes and Dreams of Young Girls, Ms. Pelly.  Her name has not been changed because she is not innocent.  I picture her now as a 65 year old spinster who is surrounded by cats and has stacks of newspapers resembling a maze in her living room.  That woman was so bitter and it showed in everything she did.  Of course I can say that now, because I have had many years to mull this over.  33 years to be exact.  I wonder if she has any idea the impact she had on me that day.  I can only hope that as she got more experience teaching, she stopped being such a destroyer of little hearts.

Molly Ringwald
Picture 10 year old me. That 70’s mushroom bowl cut. (See above! I refuse to post a photo of myself!) Wearing bell bottoms and playing hopscotch on a board that we scratched in the gravel of our unpaved school parking lot.  Wide eyed and bushy tailed.  Ready to sing my heart out!

The choir tryout consisted of the never-so-lovely Ms. Pelly striking a note on the piano and telling me to sing it.  One note.  One tiny note.  And only once. I don’t know about you, but back circa 1979, 10 year old kids in rural Newfoundland were not lucky enough to have had singing lessons and I had no idea how to hit a note on cue.  So, of course, I was not able to sing the note and with that, the tryout was over and I was out the door.  I was crushed and humiliated! 

So here I am, over 3 decades later, still influenced by that one note, so very long ago.  It has only been  in the last couple of years have I found my voice and have let it out in front of people, while playing Sing Star mostly!  But it took a very long time to get there.   That one little note still continues to influence anything and everything about music for me.

In grade 6, I started guitar lessons.  It really helps to sing while you are learning to play guitar, but by now I had developed a complex and refused to sing while playing guitar.  For the rest of my time in school, grades 6-12, I continued to take guitar lessons, but I never ever made sounds come out of my mouth in the form of a song.

Talk about crushing the spirit of a young child.  How could anyone be so…mean?  I can only assume that she was so unhappy with her life (and this was 1979, not much back then for counselling) and her only outlet was the kids she taught.  Maybe she was abused at home.  Maybe she was an alcoholic.  Hooked on Happy Pills. Who knows?  Those things weren’t really talked about back then. All I do know, is I wish I had never even met her.  EVER.  Who knows what I could have done with my music, if she hadn’t crush it like it was nothing of consequence.

These days, if a kid wants to be in choir, well then choir it is.  No tryouts necessary.  Anyone who wants to learn to play an instrument, can.  My daughter picked saxophone and learned how to play a song within the first few weeks.  She taught herself violin.  She can play the ukulele.  She can play the tin flute. The recorder.  That’s progress or maybe it’s just less about controlling the child now and more about letting them explore their potential.

I have yearned my whole life for the confidence to sing and know I don’t sound like a cat with its tail stuck in a door.    I really don’t know how I sound and I am scared to find out.

I have decided that learning how to sing is going to be on my Bucket List.  I guess this is going to be item #1.  I don’t know when and I don’t know where, but I will take singing lessons and maybe sing a song for a special occasion.  Maybe I can learn my wedding song to sing it at our 12 year anniversary in 2022.  (Doesn’t that number look odd?) It will be nice to have that monkey off my back.  Thanks Ms. Pelly for putting it there, it sure is heavy.  I think I will give him back to you soon and good riddance.  He’s old and ugly, kinda like that I imagine your insides to be.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

from Johns Hopkins


1. Every person has cancer cells in the body. These cancer cells do not show up in the standard tests until they have multiplied to a few billion. When doctors tell cancer patients that there are no more cancer cells in their bodies after treatment, it just means the tests are unable to detect the cancer cells because they have not reached the detectable size.

2. Cancer cells occur between 6 to more than 10 times in a person's lifetime.

3. When the person's immune system is strong the cancer cells will be destroyed and prevented from multiplying and forming tumors.

4. When a person has cancer it indicates the person has multiple nutritional deficiencies. These could be due to genetic, environmental, food and lifestyle factors.

5. To overcome the multiple nutritional deficiencies, changing diet and including supplements will strengthen the immune system.

6. Chemotherapy involves poisoning the rapidly-growing cancer cells and also destroys rapidly-growing healthy cells in the bone marrow, gastro-intestinal tract etc, and can cause organ damage, like liver, kidneys, heart, lungs etc.

7. Radiation while destroying cancer cells also burns, scars and damages healthy cells, tissues and organs.

8. Initial treatment with chemotherapy and radiation will often reduce tumor size. However prolonged use of chemotherapy and radiation do not result in more tumor destruction.

9. When the body has too much toxic burden from chemotherapy and radiation the immune system is either compromised or destroyed, hence the person can succumb to various kinds of infections and complications.

10. Chemotherapy and radiation can cause cancer cells to mutate and become resistant and difficult to destroy. Surgery can also cause cancer cells to spread to other sites.

11. An effective way to battle cancer is to STARVE the cancer cells by not feeding it with foods it needs to multiple.

What cancer cells feed on:

a. Sugar is a cancer-feeder. By cutting off sugar it cuts off one important food supply to the cancer cells. Note: Sugar substitutes like NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful, etc are made with Aspartame and it is harmful. A better natural substitute would be Manuka honey or molasses but only in very small amounts. Table salt has a chemical added to make it white in colour. Better alternative is Bragg's aminos or sea salt.

b. Milk causes the body to produce mucus, especially in the gastro-intestinal tract. Cancer feeds on mucus. By cutting off milk and substituting with unsweetened soy milk, cancer cells will starved.

c. Cancer cells thrive in an acid environment. A meat-based diet is acidic and it is best to eat fish, and a little chicken rather than beef or pork. Meat also contains livestock antibiotics, growth hormones and parasites, which are all harmful, especially to people with cancer.

d. A diet made of 80% fresh vegetables and juice, whole grains, seeds, nuts and a little fruits help put the body into an alkaline environment. About 20% can be from cooked food including beans. Fresh vegetable juices provide live enzymes that are easily absorbed and reach down to cellular levels within 15 minutes t o nourish and enhance growth of healthy cells.

To obtain live enzymes for building healthy cells try and drink fresh vegetable juice (most vegetables including bean sprouts) and eat some raw vegetables 2 or 3 times a day. Enzymes are destroyed at temperatures of 104 degrees F (40 degrees C).

e. Avoid coffee, tea, and chocolate, which have high caffeine. Green tea is a better alternative and has cancer-fighting properties. Water--best to drink purified water, or filtered, to avoid known toxins and heavy metals in tap water. Distilled water is acidic, avoid it.

12. Meat protein is difficult to digest and requires a lot of digestive enzymes. Undigested meat remaining in the intestines will become putrified and leads to more toxic buildup.

13. Cancer cell walls have a tough protein covering. By refraining from or eating less meat it frees more enzymes to attack the protein walls of cancer cells and allows the body's killer cells to destroy the cancer cells.

14. Some supplements build up the immune system (IP6, Flor-ssence, Essiac, anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals, EFAs etc.) to enable the body's own killer cells to destroy cancer cells. Other supplements like vitamin E are known to cause apoptosis, or programmed cell death, the body's normal method of disposing of damaged, unwanted, or unneeded cells.

15. Cancer is a disease of the mind, body, and spirit. A proactive and positive spirit will help the cancer warrior be a survivor.

Anger, unforgiving and bitterness put the body into a stressful and acidic environment. Learn to have a loving and forgiving spirit. Learn to relax and enjoy life.

16. Cancer cells cannot thrive in an oxygenated environment. Exercising daily, and deep breathing help to get more oxygen down to the cellular level. Oxygen therapy is another means employed to destroy cancer cells.


WTF is up wt the Indians? Bill C-45 *Profanity Warning*