The week atrted with the amazing news that led to the Euphoria post. What can top that for the beginning of a week?

Attended two sessions at the Wellspring centre. The first has to do with Brain Fog, the second Q-Gong.

Brain Fog

It turns out that Brain Fog is not restricted to chemo patients. We all have suffered from this condition at one time or another. You go to another room to get something, but forget what it was as soon as you enter the other room. Chemo patients seem to suffer from this condition with a slight variance, we don’t even know why we changed rooms.

The first session was geared to be an introduction of sorts, explaining what is yet to come. People talked about what they are going through. Nothing dramatic or surprising. Forgetting why you went to the store. Make a list. I did, then forgot where I put the list. I forgot about an appointment. Looked at the calendar three or four times and still forgot. Multitasking – what a joke. Can barely juggle one even let alone try to handle more. And the list goes on.

We will be doing exercises that will help us remember. Games and strategies. Word associations, and lots more.


Fascinating. This is the mother of Tait-chi and similar exercise routines that have been developed over the years. Another discipline that tries to make you aware of your breath. we were taught how to breathe as it is the backbone of the other exercises. Through the stomach, not the chest. Breathe in through the nose, out through the mouth. We had to put our hands on our stomach to make sure it was rising and falling. The instructions got slightly more risky, at least for me. We had to push in on the stomach to expel the bad chi through our back. This is a bit problematic for someone who has had his insides cut up. At one point, the moderator decided I needed help with the pushing of the stomach. I had to stop her. Why she asks, that is the location of my operation, says I. Ah, she backed off right away and told the class to not do anything that would hurt them.

We also did an energy test of sorts. You put you hands out in front of and cross them at your wrists. She then attempts to push down your hands and you resist. Hands stay up. Someone stands behind the first participant and gives the person a thumbs down over their head. The same exercise leads to little resistance as the hands collapse. She asked me to volunteer, which somehow defeats the notion of volunteering, methinks. I stood up and extended my arms are instructed. She pushed my arms down with great ease. Turns out the thumbs down saps the energy from everyone inthe room. Bizarre to say the least. Doing a thumbs up reverses the process. I guess this means we have to enter rooms and give the place an immediate thumbs up to increase the energy level. Will have to try that.

All the exercises were terrific. I just have to discipline myself to do them regularly while at home. Working on it.

Other things

I am reading a bit more. The week was high in energy for me. No chemo, or anything else. Felt very strong, but was still exhausted by the afternoon. A bit strange. Just have to adjust. I think I maybe push myself a bit harder when I am feeling well resulting in the fatigue. No worries.

Went shopping, mostly for food and stuff. All good.

One Response to “The week that was – ended January 16, 2010”

  1. Ah! So interesting!

    Is the brain fog the result of the treatment for cancer, the psychological stress/overwhelming-ness, general fatigue, or all of the above? I'd figure the latter, but psychological states of mind can have such a huge effect that I wonder if that doesn't play more of a role in brain fog than the treatments (seeing as we all get brain fog, medicated or otherwise!)

    You know, there's this common thing that gets done amongst people learning to be canoe/kayak coaches in the UK. They get told that high performance materials like neoprene or fleece (used for their wicking and fast drying/keeping you warm attributes) make you physically stronger when you wear them wet, in comparison to your strength when you wear cotton and its wet. Then one person from the group gets picked to stand up and come put his arms out in front of him. He then gets told that because he is wearing a wet performance material, he is going to be very strong, and easily be able to resist the pressure placed on his arms. The leader then tries to push his arms down, and finds that, indeed, it is difficult to do so. Then the candidate is told to take off his performance material and put on this wet cotton t-shirt that the leader has. The leader tells him all about how much weaker this will make him, how he will struggle to keep his arms up, etc. And this in fact happens, allowing the leader to easily push down the candidate's arms.

    Then the leader reveals the real learning point in the whole exercise, which is a) the power of psychology and b) the gullible nature of the group. This is because no material can make you stronger, or weaker. But the power of what your brain is thinking can do just that: it was the message that was being reinforced to the candidate about their own weakness/strength that cause them to perform in that way. In fact, some studies have shown that the same effect is produced merely by getting the candidate to look at a smiling or frowning face while performing the same task. Although not caused by an outside, physical stimulus (like a material against your skin), the effect is just as powerful.

    So that leads me to ask: did the practitioner tell you in advance of the effect that the thumbs up/thumbs down would have on you (or were you all assuming the answer before the exercise)? Not that I am in any way belittling what she had shown you: as I said above, the result, no matter how it is gained (ie through belief in the thumbs-up/material, or through the power of suggestion) is still very powerful.

    I remember you and Devin telling me about the speaker who told everyone to simply say "how fascinating!" any time they learned they had made a mistake (this was years ago, but I think of it often). This reminds me of it.

    Anyways, I hope you're enjoying the energy and being gentle on yourself for the resting times, and if Devin didn't pass on my 'wahoo!' for you CT result, I'll give it to you now…


    Much love xx

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