Kindness is the best weapon #slaythebeast

I am sure it has happened to you.

You awake from a deep sleep and check the time. It’s 3am.

My digital clock brightly displays the numbers 3.13am. I decide not battle the inevitable, there is was no way I will fall back to sleep.

One of the side effects from chemotherapy can be experiencing sleep irregularities. I am not worried about my disrupted sleep patterns.

I have read that as many as half of patients having chemotherapy treatment are more likely to have insomnia or abnormal sleep-wake cycles.

Have you ever googled 3am? Wikipedia describes 3am as Witching Hour.

3 A.M., sometimes referred to as the witching hour, is a point in time of the 12-hour clock which corresponds to 0300 in the 24-hour clock.

I smile to myself remembering my Mum calling 3am The Witching Hour, when I would stumble home at 3am after a night out partying when I was a teenager.

I decide not to waste time.

I log onto my computer and cannot believe what I am reading. A friend had convinced me to set up a GoFundMe Page because of the extraordinary circumstances our family are experiencing.

The cold hard facts are that I am battling the beast in one Country and my husband and daughter are in another Country and it’s costly.

The fall out from Covid-19 has ceased all income due to Bali being shut for tourism.

I was overwhelmed to read that the tally was over $1,500.00 in just 24 hours.

My heart rate started to beat faster, this time in a good way. My weapons were sharpening at a fast pace.

The most powerful suit of armor for me is undoubtedly kindness and gratitude.

This tangible sign of love from family, friends and strangers reinforced my faith and my determination.

A further sign to persevere and to continue preventative chemotherapy treatment as prescribed by my oncologist.

I slip on my wig, put on my make up, high boots and warm winter coat. I grab my bag of sharpened weapons and I am ready for war.

I stride purposefully out to the battlefield and into the trenches.

Thank you to my dear readers and contributors, bless you always in these challenging days we are all enduring.

Sharon xo

If you want to read more about our story or wish to contribute head over to our GoFundMe page link below

https://gofund.me/e58ef5f4

Slay the beast

The enemy often sneaks up from behind. 

Just when you start to rest the beast attacks. 

I knew it was coming, however, my mind works in collaboration with my shadows voices and had somehow twisted the inevitable.

It only took me a moment though to reach for my sword.

I am war ready.

Defend.

If the beast thinks it will crush me, it can think again.  My weapons are razor sharp and I have a few tricks of my own.

I am a patient of the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, in Victoria, Australia

I am receiving what I believe to be the best care in the world. 

The state of the art building boasts a world class Cancer research Centre, the best doctors and nurses, the best drugs, equipment and most importantly in my case the best mental health team.   

When the chunks of hair started coming out in my brush, I gasped, although I was mentally prepared it was still a surprise.  After the initial shock I laughed out loud. 

The beast thought it could attack my calm state of mind, the ugly intruder had underestimated me though.

I was excited, it was time to execute my plan and kick it in the guts.

It happened on a Friday and I had taken the weekend to process my next phase of womanhood. 

My sister Amanda and myself had formulated a plan.  It is handy that she is a hairdresser and has life experience dealing with women and men who have alopecia.

By Sunday the chunks were becoming bigger and I was shedding everywhere.  My oncologist had given me a choice to wear a scalp cooling hat during chemotherapy to reduce the hair loss.  That was something I didn’t consider. 

In a bath full of bubbles I soaked for a long time, the music was roaring in the background as I took my razor and shaved every follicle of hair from my body.

I had decided that the entire hair experience was going to be a fun adventure in fashion.  I had already bought a gorgeous blonde wig in preparation.

My beautiful sister was more anxious than me as we sat in front of the mirror and began to execute our plan on Monday morning.

She finally relaxed and we started laughing uncontrollably as she started to

“Chop, chop, chop”

When we were children she had attacked my dolls with the scissors, I was so upset with her at the time.  This time I gave her full artistic power to create as many different hairstyles as she liked. 

Amanda created a sleek bob, a rapper hairdo with a long fringe and an executive spike hair cut.

The final result was better than I had visualized.

Move over Demi More, I love my GI Jane shaved head.

 I am a warrior.

#staythebeast

I am at war

I wake up exhausted, if I close my eyes and try to go back to sleep my mind will go into overdrive.  I am better off opening my curtains and waiting for sunrise as I turn on the television.  The news anchors are talking about the 2021 Australian budget.

Amongst the announcements, there will be no major Covid19 outbreaks and International borders will stay closed until the middle of 2022. I find this announcement remarkable, I read an article yesterday about western countries such as the USA and England racing back to travel and that zero-covid economies like Australia could face hermit risk.   

I look out the window to my neighbor.

 A big shiny high rise building, it’s empty, another scary sign of the world we are now living in because of Covid-19.  My friends in Melbourne are mostly working from home now.

I stare at the evidence glaring at me 24 hours a day 7 days a week for 14 full days.  I cannot leave my small room, the policeman in the hallway is the warden.

I am more than halfway through my mandatory quarantine, I have settled into a routine of being incarcerated.

A big shiny high rise building, it’s empty, another scary sign of the world we are now living in because of Covid-19. 

The first few days of my imprisonment were a different story, I am grateful that I have gotten through the first week.

This week I am not running to the peephole every time I hear activity in the hallway.  

Through the peephole I can see staff dressed in full Covid-19 combat gear, sometimes spraying my front door, vacuuming, dropping of meals or taking a Covid19 swab test from the tenants at the doorway from the room opposite. 

The nurses test me every two days, every test has come back negative, which is what I expect. 

I have already had the first jab of Astra Zeneca vaccine almost 5 weeks ago. 

 The tests will continue at my door every two days until I am released.  The nurse also checks in every day, by making a telephone call to my room.

They call me to ask me if I have any Covid19 symptoms, if I am eating and drinking, and what I have planned for the day.  I find this last question hilarious.

This week I am not running to the peephole every time I hear activity in the hallway.  

I often think about the people in this building.  I am in a hotel that is run in conjunction with a hospital.  We all have different reasons for being here, we all have some sort of pre-existing medical issue.

I am still coming to terms with the diagnosis after my radical mastectomy in Bali.  The beast had spread to my lymph nodes and I need treatment to fight back.

Leaving my husband and baby was heart wrenching but necessary. 

The medical care I will receive in Melbourne is the best in the world. 

With the help of a small group of determined, intelligent and connected women I made it back home to Australia safely. The gratitude I feel is hard to put into words, my prayer and meditation routine is my main source of strength.

Appointments have been made.

 I am all set to begin my battle the same day I leave quarantine.

I ask my readers to please pray for my victory and the strength of my loved ones at this time. 

I need to focus on myself.

I need to slay the beast and win the war.

Blessings always

Sharon xxx

Will I wake up with one boob?

I knew something was wrong, but life is different now. I am normally extra cautious about health, you might even call me fanatical. Like self isolating in a pandemic for more than a year, when I didn’t have to.

I did’t even leave home for a hair cut. I could not justify spending money on myself for luxuries, finances are tight, really tight.

I was ignoring the rather large lump in my breast, I didn’t want to visit a Bali hospital  during a pandemic

I knew after I received my first immunisation, I would feel a sense of freedom, I told my sister about my lump.  I knew she would scream at me, I needed to be screamed at.  

Why did i put myself last on a list of priorities?  Actually that’s not true, before the pandemic I would travel to Australia regularly for breast mammograms.  

That was before.  

Now travel is only for the rich, and for people who have time. 

I have let my insurance lapse, my head was spinning, where would I start?  

To cut a long story short I had a USG ultrasound in an immaculate facility in Renon, Denpasar called “Prodia”.

I didn’t have to wait, I felt like a VIP.

The doctor at “Prodia” told me I had cancer.

This blew me out of the water.  Surely I was dreaming, how the hell would she know?   It couldn’t be Cancer, I am  healthy, I pray, I have a new baby.

This blew me out of the water.  Surly I was dreaming, how the hell would she know?   It couldn’t be Cancer, I am  healthy, I pray, I have a new baby.

I asked her how she knew?

The operator of the machine assured me she was a Doctor, that’s how she knew, and she gently explained the good news.  The X-ray showed the cancer had not spread to the lymph nodes.  

My fear quickly turned to gratitude.  

My ultrasound results boasted 

 BI-RADS 5 lesions, highly suspicious of malignancy.  

One google report I read said that my lump had a 95% chance of being a cancerous tumour.

When I walked out of the centre I said to my husband that we needed to eat, our daughter was hungry.  Normally I would burst out information immediately. When my husband, Made, asked me what happened I said I would explain at lunch.  

Made is a pretty cool character, I believe though he was as shocked as I.    He had been doing energy healing on my lump, I had also, it just didn’t add up to either of us.

The next seven days became a whirlwind of decisions and emotions. 

My sister is my rock, she has taken on a role that I would never believe possible.

My little sister has become the older wiser sibling, pushing me to return to the strong fighter I have been in the past. 

Pushing me to make decisions, to think clearly and to sort it out.

I gathered my strength and contacted two women, one in Australia and one in Bali.  Both women are leaders, both are highly respected health professionals.  Both women said I should return to Australia as the first choice for treatment.

The complications of travelling in a COVID-19 world are harsh, the paperwork required for an exemption from quarantine in Australia for health reasons is complex.  

The price of the flights are outrageous.  The travel time from Bali to Melbourne was up to 40 hours with layovers and overnight stays in various countries.  Garuda were sold out until May.

I was not sleeping at night because of the thought of being away from my family.  My stress level and anxiety was skyrocketing, something had to change.

The thought of having a biopsy and possible mastectomy in the general hospital was making me feel weak, I have had friends die there.  More nightmares and confusion.  

My sister took control, like a ray of hope, money appeared in my account. My 85 year old father who has come back into my life recently became my saviour.  

He told me he knew there must have been a reason why he is still alive, to look after his first born child.

My worries washed away like an ocean of relief, I felt  instantly calm in the presence of Dr Melati.  She examined my breast, studied the X-ray results and gently explained what she believed was the best way forward.  

Tomorrow I will be put under general anaesthetic and Dr Melati will take a biopsy, the diagnosis of the biopsy will determine if my lump is malignant,  if it is cancerous she will perform a mastectomy.

My husband is continuing healing work on my lump.   I continue to visualise my lump going away gently.  Maybe I will be in that lucky 5%.  I believe it is a good omen that the process will take place in the middle of Galungan dan Kuningan.  Our Balinese Hindu faith believes our ancestors are visiting earth twice a year for 10 days.

I remember my mum having the same procedure when I was about 11 years old.  She said to me “Sharon, when I wake up I don’t know if I will have one booby or two”. My Mother’s lump was benign.

What ever will be is okay, I am now at peace with my decision.

Melbourne lockdown

Born in the heart of a City

That City is a lady

Some say she is a miniature London

Most are in awe, the acres of manicured gardens in that busy City

So pretty

Trams

Theatre

Concerts

MelbourneMelbourne lockdown, Image James Rowland 10 Aug 2020

Aussie rules footy

Tennis

Arts….Comedy

I miss you Melbourne

I am feeling your pain

You will get through this

My heart is yours



  Facebook

 Instagram

 Twitter

Tri Sandhya Villa

Melbourne lockdown – a reflection of Covid-19 ©August 2020

 

 

Ego

How would you describe your ego

How would others describe your ego

Have you even thought about it, deeply, intensely, honestly

Do others call you egotistical

Do they say it to your face, or when your back is turned

Maybe you don’t believe you have an ego

Quiet, submissive, you are a person that causes no trouble

You fly under the radar, nobody is watching

Nobody can see your ego

Your ego has become isolated

Your ego is forced into lockdown

Consciously, unconsciously, we all have ego, there is no escaping ego now

How will you navigate your ego

Your universe has collided, you have lost control

You might fall down a trap, a strong desire to resist

Will ego change

The planet commands humans to remain still

It’s still out there

Will ego dominate

Will ego embrace the moment, the unknown reality of a brave new world

lovely2

Photograph Sharon Karyasa

27th April, 2020. Reflection of Covid-19, Bali, Indonesia.

Sharon Karyasa ©2020

  Facebook

 Instagram

 Twitter

Tri Sandhya Villa

 

Cry

The world is crying

Tears flow endlessly

Lost

I can’t go out, I cry

I reach out at night, for that dream

The dream has gone

For now

I pick myself up

Why is the image reflecting fear

I must change the channel

Don’t believe the chaos

Believe in hope

Believe in truth

Believe in kindness

Believe that light will defeat darkness

I must

We must

Believe in this brave new world of hope

poem

Photograph by Made Karyasa at Mt Batur, Bali, Indonesia.

Dedicated to my dear friend Hetty Bradley, a true angel on this Island of the Gods.

8th April, 2020. Reflection of Covid-19, Bali, Indonesia.

Sharon Karyasa ©2020

  Facebook

 Instagram

 Twitter

 

Australia Burns

I awake, heart beating rapidly
Although I am not physically home
My soul is yours
Our carefree, funny and free spirit is who we are
Our kangaroos and koalas
Images of childhood realities of comfort
I awake to a reality that my home is at war
The monster is real
Why didn’t you listen?
Climate change is real, they told you

Australia Bruns

Words Sharon Karyasa
Image 📷: Ryan Pollock | @ryno_thecaptain/Instagram

 

Sharon Karyasa ©2020

  Facebook

 Instagram

 Twitter