Chris Beat Cancer

Chemo?

This guy photographed every stage of his wife’s cancer treatment

From Angelo Merendino’s blog:

The first time I saw Jennifer I knew. I knew she was the one. I knew, just like my dad when he sang to his sisters in the winter of 1951 after meeting my mom for the first time, “I found her.”

A month later Jen got a job in Manhattan and left Cleveland. I would go to the city – to see my brother, but really wanting to see Jen. At every visit my heart would scream at my brain, “tell her!!” but I couldn’t work up the courage to tell Jen that I couldn’t live without her. My heart finally prevailed and, like a schoolboy, I told Jen “I have a crush on you.” To the relief of my pounding heart, Jen’s beautiful eyes lit up and she said “Me too!”

Six months later I packed up my belongings and flew to New York with an engagement ring burning a hole in my pocket. That night, at our favorite Italian restaurant, I got down on my knee and asked Jen to marry me. Less than a year later we were married in Central Park, surrounded by our family and friends. Later that night, we danced our first dance as husband and wife, serenaded by my dad and his accordion – ♫ “I’m in the mood for love…”♫

Five months later Jen was diagnosed with breast cancer. I remember the exact moment… Jen’s voice, and the numb feeling that enveloped me. That feeling has never left. I’ll also never forget how we looked into each other’s eyes and held each other’s hands. “We are together, we’ll be ok.”

With each challenge we grew closer. Words became less important. One night Jen had just been admitted to the hospital, her pain was out of control. She grabbed my arm, her eyes watering, “You have to look in my eyes, that’s the only way I can handle this pain.” We loved each other with every bit of our souls.

Jen taught me to love, to listen, to give and to believe in others and myself. I’ve never been as happy as I was during this time.

Throughout our battle we were fortunate to have a strong support group but we still struggled to get people to understand our day-to-day life and the difficulties we faced. Jen was in chronic pain from the side effects of nearly 4 years of treatment and medications. At 39, Jen began to use a walker and was exhausted from being constantly aware of every bump and bruise. Hospital stays of 10-plus days were not uncommon. Frequent doctor visits led to battles with insurance companies. Fear, anxiety and worries were constant.

Sadly, most people do not want to hear these realities and at certain points we felt our support fading away. Other cancer survivors share this loss. People assume that treatment makes you better, that things become OK, that life goes back to “normal.” However, there is no normal in cancer-land. Cancer survivors have to define a new sense of normal, often daily. And how can others understand what we had to live with everyday?

My photographs show this daily life. They humanize the face of cancer, on the face of my wife. They show the challenge, difficulty, fear, sadness and loneliness that we faced, that Jennifer faced, as she battled this disease. Most important of all, they show our Love. These photographs do not define us, but they are us.

Cancer is in the news daily, and maybe, through these photographs, the next time a cancer patient is asked how he or she is doing, along with listening, the answer will be met with more knowledge, empathy, deeper understanding, sincere caring and heartfelt concern.

“Love every morsel of the people in your life.” – Jennifer Merendino

These photos speak volumes. Brace yourself.

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All photos by Angelo Merendino.

Angelo  has started an organization to help women with their financial struggles during their trials with breast cancer.

More about that at Angelo’s blog: http://mywifesfightwithbreastcancer.com


My thoughts:

First, Angelo has my highest respect and deepest sympathy. His decision to stay with his new wife “in sickness and in health” is nothing short of heroic. This man, like so many spouses of patients, is the epitome of love in action. I can’t imagine what he went through watching the love of his life slowly fade away… My heart breaks for him.

Second, I’ve gained some notoriety for speaking out against about “cancer awareness and research” charities like Susan G Komen, but any cancer charity that gives money directly to patients is one I support, assuming they are being good stewards of the funds they raise. Putting money directly into the hands of cancer patients and their families does real, measurable good. I am so glad to see that Angelo has a heart for this.

Third, Angelo’s photo essay has been reposted on many sites, but none have addressed the elephant in the room…

Cancer did not destroy this beautiful woman.

Conventional cancer treatment did.

Now let me be clear. I’m not implying that cancer does not kill people. It does. But the treatment is often worse than the disease, and does more harm than good.

Jennifer’s story mirrors many who are diagnosed with cancer. Patients are typically rushed into treatment with no idea how destructive and ineffective it is. And how much suffering is involved. They are not told that the body can heal, only that they have to “battle and fight cancer”, a warfare narrative created to help people accept that they must endure brutal, conventional cut-poison-burn treatments. And like warfare, it often ends tragically.

Patients are also not told that chemotherapy only contributes 2.1% toward 5-year survival on average. In Jennifer’s case, the absolute survival benefit at 5 years for chemotherapy in women under 50 with breast cancer was shown to be 6.8% for node-positive and 3% for node-negative women.

They are not told that chemotherapy can backfire and boost cancer growth.

They are not told whether their treatment is meant to be curative or just pallative, and often have unrealistic expectations that they can beat the odds and be cured, when the doctors know they can’t. Patients are unknowingly hoping for a “medical miracle”.

Terminal patients are told that chemotherapy will “extend their life”, which is why they agree to do it,
but they don’t know that the side effects of chemotherapy are often downplayed and that researchers spin their results.

They don’t know that oncologists are some of the highest-paid doctors because more than half of their income comes from selling and administering chemotherapy drugs. They actually profit off the drugs that they insist you take.

They don’t know that the cancer industry has made very little progress in lowering the death rate or increasing the survival rate for most cancers. The cancer death rate has only improved 5% on average since 1950. And 5-year survival has only improved 5% on average since 1970. The exceptions are fairly uncommon cancers: some leukemias, some lymphomas, and testicular cancer.

I hear and read tragic stories just like Jennifer’s every day. My inbox is full of them.

As a result of conventional cancer treatments, someone very close to me is now an invalid with dementia requiring 24-hour care. She is confined to a wheelchair, unable to feed, clothe, or bathe herself, and doesn’t communicate most of the time.

I’ve thought about posting a collection of cautionary tales for some time, but I wasn’t sure how.
I think this post is an appropriate forum for that and I’m looking forward to reading your thoughts and comments.

If you would like to share your experience watching a loved one suffer and die as a result of cancer treatment please feel free to do so. I don’t like dwelling on negative things, but we can learn from the experiences of others, whether good or bad, and people need to know the truth about conventional cancer treatments, and that they have other options. That’s why this site exists, to empower you with life-saving information that can help you heal cancer and/or avoid cancer in the first place. If you have lost a loved one to cancer, that story is valuable and important. It could make all the difference for someone who is at a fork in the road. Please take this opportunity to share it with those who might find themselves here.

Watch my video What every cancer patient needs to know

Read other posts by women who have healed breast cancer naturally here.

(((c)))

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  • Linda

    Hi, I am also a cancer survivor. I had Stage 3C breast cancer. I have gone through all the conventional treatment of slash, poison and burn. I am so far cancer free and I hope and pray to stay that way. I am 2.5 years out from diagnosis. I have a 14 year old daughter and I am starting college this spring. I remain hopeful and optimistic that I will beat this.

  • Sharon Massey

    I would love some help in putting my thoughts and experiences fighting my way back from a long, four year battle back from Stage 4, Breast Cancer. I went through all the traditional medicines and I had no quality of life due to tomifien, xgeva, and luprin not to mention all the narcotics I was one.
    Last October, the 22nd to be exact, I went, very sick, to my 30th High School Reunion to say goodbye to people I have known all my life. We grew up “Medford Lakes”, we started kindergarten together thru the 8th grade, and then onto high school with other school districts. Very unusual!

    Anyways, that night, one of my darkest hours, came my lifeline. We saw each other across the room, walked to the middle and hugged to say “Hello”. She pulled back and asked me if I was sick. My reply, very. She gave me her phone number and told me she could help me if I was opened minded. Lucky for me I was. I started a non-conventional treatment at her home the Monday after our class reunion from Saturday night. Everyday I drove an hour to her home, before we knew it I was responding. Some days I got home, I didn’t know how I got home. Some days I crawled up the steps into my bed.

    And before I knew it, I had a clean Petscan in January, three months after I began her treatment. Now I am clean!

    My very loving and supportive husband and I are trying to pay it forward to those who are opened minded enough to try something the medical community has deemed. “Unconventional”, wait for it,,,, multi-wave oscillators, a clean diet, and essential oils are why my cancer has been reversed!

    • bobbijo

      could you please share your treatment that has healed you of cancer? i am fighting breast cancer right now. i am doing many alternative treatments. and my tumor seems to be growing out of control, everyone is scared for me. worried im one of those that wont respond to natural treatments. you seem to have had a very very good result. i would love to have more information. you can email me if you can not post in public. thank you.. bobbijo72@aol.com

  • Linda

    My prayers goes out to Angelo and the family. I was told I had breast cancer 1 year ago this November. My doctor led me to believe if I did not hurriedly have surgery, and chemo before January, I would be dead. I chose not to have the surgery because of risks factors of my heart I found out. I seriously decided to do research of alternative ways to health, we had an old juicer we had bought years ago, with the book called the juice man. I decided after some research to go all organic with my juicing and eating. Our daughter bought us a champion juicer for Christmas, and we went off of all meat, flours, dairy, sugar. When you find out you have cancer you will do what it takes to get healthy again. At first our son was not supportive he thought I should do what the doctor said, he did not respond to the alternative doctor I was seeing either. But he later did, because of the thermo-gram test results that came back showing the amazing results after 11 months of good nutrition will do. I only like 1/3 and I will be healed. I also gave up mammograms. Because 50 pounds of weight is pressed down on your breast shooting radiation straight into your breast, and having mammograms every 2 years after the age of 40 for 25 years I believe contributed to my cancer. Why? Doctors have always told us they cannot give to many x-rays because there is a danger of to much radiation, for years and years doctors have said this. Ladies do not get mammograms, do the safe way and get thermo grams. Baylor Hospital in Dallas, Texas offers the Thermo-gram now, I believe hopefully all hospitals will eventually will offer it. I received my thermo-gram from my alternative doctor. Change is essential for healing I believe, and I am proof. I am no longer scared of cancer I know it can be healed through, organic foods, juicing, By the way juicing gets to the blood stream quickly. Getting the chemicals out of the home and off our bodies from head to toe, learning to get the stress out of our lives, plenty of sun- vitamin D, it is not the sun that causes cancer it is the chemical sun lotions we put on our bodies that contribute to active cancer. Good cleanest water, we chose the Berkey water system and shower heads. I also got off all coffee’s and on organic lemon grass tea and I drink warm lemon water first thing in the morning, half a organic lemon in a cup of warm water. I found the research paper and results on this was so amazing, that I had to add it to my regiment. I decided not to eat any sugar at all after early research into what sugar does. Sugar feeds cancer. Most of my research was from overseas alternative Doctors, and reading books on the subject of cancer. What convinced me to go alternative to healing was early on last year in December when I ask the Chemo Doctor would she have surgery, chemo and radiation if she was in my place, and she said no she would not. Later on I found out the percentage of doctors who would not have the conventional way of treating cancer was 70% or higher. I stepped out in Faith in God that what I read from the Bible on healing ourselves, and asking God to lead me and believing He would, brought for me so much peace and understanding and knowledge of healing. Chris Thank You again and again. Go Bless you all, And Diane all I can say Girl, is step out and Go for the healing, it works. Chemicals does not. Diane I will pray you will have the courage to do so. God’s speed.

    • bobbijo

      Linda, God bless and congrats on your success, i to have breast cancer, with a very large and very painful tumor, i have been wondering about someone who has successfully healed of breast cancer without surgery, could i ask you how long it took to be completely free of the tumor without surgery? and how much juicing did you do daily and which kind? also, did you eat fruit? thank you.

  • Linda

    Oh,I share my story with whom ever I com in contact with, that way I know I am sharing Good News and vital Knowledge.

  • Follow this woman’s journey and you will be moved guaranteed . Sad but true and the world needs to wake up. Holistic CHef Barry Unbelievable amount of comments from people to this.

  • I have two Sons who went through cancer treatment.Both have survived thank God and are well now and free of cancer..MY daughter in law, Wife to one of the sons was also diagnosed with breast cancer nearly two years ago and has also had chemo,herceptin, and is still taking temoxephin,but is free of cancer now. The journey hasn’t always been easy as you can imagine but during all of this time each one of them continued to go about there lives in between treatment and continue to work. I also had until recently the most beautiful niece aged just 42 who was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was 39. Following a Mastectomy she refused any further treatment certain in her own mind that she would kill this invasion of her body herself .IT WAS NOT TO BE. the last year of her life was spent trying one after another of these natural healing cures all to no avail, The cancer had travelled into her spine,neck,hips,liver,and all of this effected the central nervous system causing the worst pain imaginable in her whole body, it was nearly impossible to touch her without causing great pain. When I saw the pictures of your wife my heart broke for you and I know you would have done anything to save her but I just wanted to tell you of our experiences and assure you that the natural route did nothing to help my lovely Niece who was not only beautiful on the outside but also a very beautiful being who put her trust into something and it failed her. The last 7years for myself and family have been fraught with the worry and none of it has been easy believe me but the only thing I would wish to change if it was possible would be Amanda’s choice and then maybe we would have still had her here with us. GODBLESS you and I hope you find the peace you so need right now. My prayers will be with you and your beautiful wife that she will find eternal peace in heaven. LINDAXXX

  • Louisa

    First , I would like to thanks Chris from all my hearth for what he is doing.I know that he will contribute to save lives. I would have like so much to know all I know today when I was diagnosed with breast cancer stage 2 grade III 8 years ago .

    It’s hard to see images like that when you pass it through this path. I know that I’m a lucky one who didn’t die but let me tell you that I almost did . I can say today that these ” treatments ” ARE NOT the way to do. I would NEVER EVER do it again !! It’s worst than you can imagine. They told me that there was only 1% of people experienced all the horrible side effects I had … I didn’t know anything about alternatives at this moment. I didn’t have the internet.

    Here’s just a few :
    First one , I vomited so much and many times that I must go to the hospital to be hydrated.I didn’t know at that moment but I became sterile … So I had to deal with all the effects of drastic menopause plus the others …

    Second : Happened twice… So much fever that I must return to hospital… They gave me powerful antibiotics because they were afraid that I had in infection and with the neutropenia , very dangerous …

    Third : Became so anemic that I needed a blood transfusion

    Fourth : No more white blood cells. Must inject myself a medication called neupogen
    to help that. Imagine having to do that when you’re afraid of injection. Not really the joy !

    Fifth : I didn’t agree for a porthecart so I had injections in my arms. After a few treatments , my veins was completely destroy and they couldn’t succeed to do the injections anymore after about 6 nurses pass on me and try and try… Horrible moment…

    Today , I think about that and wonder how I can have been so blind not to tell another word … I now know that, all I needed at that time was probably a lot of rest and good nutrition and not to be POISONED !

    I hope so much that people wake up and see the truth about all this industry of BIG profits.

    I was looking a few days ago for videos to send for someone I know have cancer and I find one that I didn’t want to look but finally I was push to look at it. Since last night, I know why but don’t want to talk about that.

    All I can say is that I sworn to try all my best to OPEN THE EYES so these atrocity stops but to achieve that, we must sometimes show the heavy reality. So , for the one who really want to see what is the bigger children serial killer ever till now , go to see that but I advise that it’s really hard to look. But sometimes , it’s what it need to make people understand the truth !

    Look for: Phoebe’s Cancer Story on You Tube but don’t forget that there’s another video saying that she’s now a little angel: In Loving Memory of Phoebe Lucille Fair ♥

    I think that after watching that , nobody will think that it’s the way to treat our little kids but nevertheless the law oblige the parents to follow that path …! Phoebe would like that it stops but she’s not alone . You can find a lot of histories like Phoebe. It’s so horrible to do that to these little kids …In what world are we living … ???

    God bless you all !

  • Brandon

    I wanna Angelo captured this perfectly. Sadly that the end result was not in either of their favor. To you Angelo I send you my deepest condolences. Would like to say that this thread describes my experience with my godmother and her breast cancer. Even though she lost her life to this dreadful disease, her spirit, wisdom, and excitement that she taught and shared with me will never be killed. Be strong and stay strong, together we are a force and overcome anything.

  • Filipe

    Angelo is living proof of a perfect being! A heart that has no boundaries. You are my hero!

  • bobbijo

    unfortunately, conventional cancer treatments will never change because it is an industry, they give us cancer so they can “treat” the cancer and make the money! it sickens me just to write it.. I have breast cancer, i refuse to do chemo or radiation, i was about to get surgery and my Doctor was forced to resign, this came 3 days after prayer that God would show me a clear sign if surgery was the right choice. I would say he says no… either way, faith comes first, then following through on using what he gave us. natural supplements, herbs and vitamins. eat the foods he originally said to eat and let the body heal. I pray to make it through without surgery at all, i have not seen many who have not done the surgery and natural therapies and would love to know if anyone healed breast cancer without surgery simply by nutrition. however, my faith is strong and i carry on. blessings to you all.

  • Danielle

    Their story melted my heart. It should not be this way!
    I’m on my own journey and I’m thankful for all the information that is shared on this page.

  • These eyeopening experiences are heartfelt. I personally took care of a sister inlaw going through breast cancer and passed away within 6 months. My farther passed away with lung cancer. Uncle died with pancreatic cancer. Another family member with breast. Sitting next to their beds make you wonder what can I do to help. Today we have a toxin free beauty salon Pure YL Organics that serves cancer patients, diabetics, highblood pressure patients, pregnant moms with fume free toxin free Hair Nails and skin services. My reason for mentioning our business is only to share what we see and hear when a patient after chemotherapy comes to Pure YL to relax. Our recovering clients loved no fumes during color jobs. No acetone gel nails or acrylics smells. We are Trying to give the best support in words and salon services, still makes us feel it’s not enough. Hurts when we hear “suzi is no longer with us passed away” and she was in our salon for hair service a week ago. We have seen how cancer treatments feel like through our clients health. They are tired, we are trying our healing energy work and a toxin free salon environment but still feel theirs more they need. Our best wishes to everybody.

  • Pingback: Man Photographs Every Stage of His Wife’s Battle With Breast Cancer | Extreme Health Radio - Your Healthy Living Resource()

  • Jeremy Alexander

    “Cancer did not destroy this beautiful woman.
    Conventional cancer treatment did.”

    Thank you.

  • martina

    this is a sad but beautiful love story, is the reality of life, which in part may be wrong, but every little bit is just beautiful.

  • Pam Escalante

    Chris: Thank you for posting this sad but inspiring story. We lost our beautiful precious mom almost 33 years ago to breast cancer. And subsequently have lost many, many other family members to cancer or other serious illnesses. My mom also took the chemo/radiation route.She had one breast removed and then 2 years later the cancer returned and the 2nd breast was taken. She passed away a few months later from those ungodly treatments. As a result of losing my mom, a little over a year later I went on a persistent hunt on how one gets cancer. Even though I knew very little then I was determined to find natural solutions to healing and most importantly prevention. I drastically changed my eating habits. The only flesh I ate was fish. I stopped with all the “deadly whites” etc.etc. Over 5 years ago I became a raw vegan which I feel gives me even more assurance. Over the last couple of years friends and family come to me for advice. Even though I tell them they don’t necessarily have to become a raw vegan but instead make radical dietary changes etc. Some listen but most don’t. Practically everybody is on some type of prescription for something. Though I’ve learned a great deal. I consider myself the ever present student because there’s always something new to learn and improve on.I thank God for your tenacity and how you chose another route. It’s stories like yours that confirm to me that I’m on the right track. I too celebrate your 10 year anniversary. Your new friend “IN CHRIST”, PAM

  • carolyn matos

    i am in tears right at work, this is so terrible

  • Impressive photo series. It just shows that chemo is not the way to go with cancer.
    I have found a very good site about natural cancer treatments.
    A friend of mine is using the products, and is getting better! No chemo!
    I know the web site from him. Great information, and affordable products.
    Here it is, for everyone diagnosed… http://myherbalcancertreatment.com/
    Maine site: http://www.herbalcross.com/

  • Paula

    The only thing that bothers me about having breast cancer is hearing…”well this happened to my friend…..and this happened to my cousin and so and so” Every cancer is different and every person is different. I like the comment above that said “if you don’t have it….then don’t talk”…it’s not that you cannot talk…just please…don’t aggressively try to convince a cancer patient with YOUR opinion…until you get the news yourself…then you will see how hard each decision is. The bottom line? It is the cancer patients decision. Sometimes those decisions are based on faith…sometimes they are based on fear. What is touching about the pictures is his love the whole way through. I find when you fight cancer…you get way more opinions than kindness and love.

  • Jennifer

    This was powerful! I am new to this site. My husband and I are in Minnesota sitting in a hotel as we are receiving care at the Mayo clinic for a spot on his pancreas that was believed to be cancer….but small and in the early stages. At least that is what we were told 1 1/2 weeks ago. Yesterday, after a procedure we were told there were also spots on his liver, needle biopsy was done and it is cancer of the pancreas which has spread to the liver. Surgery is not an option and it is terminal. A friend gave me a link to this website and I have been on the computer for about 24 hours straight reading and learning and filling my heart with hope that we just may have an option after all. I’m trying not to be scared but I am. We have consults with the doctors at mayo tomorrow and I’m dreading it. We think, after my non stop internet research this past day, we may go see Dr. Patrick in Mexico for the Gerson treatment. I want to thank you for your website and everything in it. Although I am still scared I’m also comforted….thank you!