More Family Ties

My sister, J, has breast cancer.

I may have mentioned her on here before: she is the “crazy” one, the one that has systematically destroyed every relationship she has ever had, friends, family, lovers and children, through self-destructive and relationship-destructive behaviors.  Her father (my mother’s first husband) was a diagnosed schizophrenic; I have always believed she suffers mental illness as well, though years ago, when my eldest son was 2 years old, I stopped allowing that to be an excuse for her, and removed her from my life.  I have not allowed her back in an all those years.  I lost touch with her children as well, a nephew and a niece that I adored, but that came to despise this side of the family, as J despised us all.

Yesterday, I ran across my niece on Facebook.  And, from her profile, I found my sister’s. It says, in part:

“I have breast cancer and chose to follow the road less traveled in terms of medical care. Far too many people are dying of cancer and it is clear that the standard AMA treatments are not working. So for me, no biopsy, no surgery, no chemotherapy, no radiation.

My husband was diagnosed with throat cancer and within 15 months he passed away. I am convinced that he might have lived had alternative therapies been used instead of conventional medicine.

A lot of my time goes toward the purpose of healing. I primarily use the Johanna Budwig protocol and see an Oriental Medicine Doctor once a week. I use tumor marker tests to gauge my progress. I believe that cancer is a systemic condition and it can be cured.

I’m charting my progress with photos and medical records and hope that my experience will help to inspire other women to take control of their own healing process.”

I don’t even know what to think of that.  My mother told me that J had been trying to “cure” her cancer via alternative therapies, but that finally, she realized they weren’t working and turned to conventional medicine. Her biopsy revealed the cancer is in its latter stages, very aggressive, and probably, as it was left so late, inoperable and resistant to chemo or radiation.

I looked at pictures of my niece and my sister, and my eyes filled with tears, remembering how I adored her as a child, how I looked up to her, and how deeply she hurt me the last time I saw her. And yet, for all of that, I love her. I want to reach out to her.  But I am afraid to.  Afraid to invite all the drama, all the craziness that is my sister, back into my life.

If I was a psychiatrist analyzing myself, I’d probably say my “no drama” policy stems from the pain and heartache I (and my family) have suffered at my sister’s hands.

In the end, I emailed my niece on Facebook.  We’ll see where things go from there.

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