On Wednesday, August 17, 2011, I lost my dear friend Naomi, to cancer.

I first met Naomi when I was giving talk in Sydney to a group of cancer affected people who were learning about The Gawler Foundation’s approach to healing. She was the one who asked questions. I remember clearly the beret slanted across her head disguising the ravages of chemotherapy. She was diminutive in stature, but not by any measure diminutive in spirit, strength of will, intellect, and a desire to live a long life.

We were both members of Canhelp, our Sydney based cancer support group. This is where we cemented our friendship. It’s hard to articulate how it happened, but we just hit it off, sharing lunches together, exchanging information about diet, herbs, healing and cancer, or simply talking on the telephone.

Naomi had a fierce desire to defeat her cancer. This was reflected in her dedication to her dietary principles, her meditations, and her research into what she could do next to improve her chances of living that long life. Sometimes I would listen in awe as she explained some aspect of her approach to healing which took considerable
discipline to maintain. Her dedication was inspirational. There have been many an occasion when I was about to eat something that wasn’t beneficial to my own cancer management when an inner voice would caution me, ‘Naomi wouldn’t eat this’.

Cancer is an ever so silent prowler; a thief. It creeps around our bodies looking for a place to hide from where it can rob us of our lives. If it decides to conceal itself in the stomach, as it did with Naomi, it’s life-robbing ability can be particularly difficult to arrest. Even when detected it can still defend itself against every form of treatment, conventional or otherwise. Some of us are diagnosed with more manageable cancers. Naomi got a tough one. I’m convinced that Naomi gave herself more time than she might otherwise have had by integrating her healing into her life spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically.

The last time we spoke was in April this year when I telephoned a Canhelp meeting from overseas. On Wednesday I had the privilege of sitting with her and holding her hand after her passing, and to share some of that time with her partner Andrew. Being able to sit with Naomi, hold her, and cry was immensely healing for me. Good on you gal, you’re still doing good. We all benefited from knowing Naomi and having her in our lives. Thank you for having been my friend and sharing a part your life with me.

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