Well of Life Center Cancer Testimonial Removal Review

Update 2016: It appears the Well of Life has redone their website and when looking through their testimonials I did not seem to find my father’s. I am glad that they took it off their site if that is the case. It makes me respect them more, and I can say to their credit I do know of several people going to them who have had positive results. As with any health treatment, you should use a mix of natural health and science, as well as your own intuition and common sense!

The Well of Life Center for Natural Health, which has locations in Ottsville and Doylestown, PA, is a health center that uses muscle testing and other means of helping patients on their journey to health. My father, his wife (my stepmother), and their kids all went (or still go) there. I was even a patient. However, I have a story I must tell!

My dad was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in 2009. Though he did have an improvement in his lungs and the cancer went into remission in 2010, we didn’t know to what extent it was spreading in his body (brain and spine). He sadly died from this metastasized cancer in 2011.

Why I am writing about these events? I am in utter shock and disbelief that the Well of Life will not take down the testimonial that is up there from my father, talking about how they helped his lung cancer that “went into remission”! Could it be that they don’t want to take down what looks to be like their most salient testimonial? (So I thought it my duty to share this bizarre story!)

Here is my father’s testimonial. Note it’s the longest and first one on the page.

well father inaccurate testimonial

It is not only inaccurate in not reflecting that he died from said lung cancer, but they are seemingly claiming they helped almost cure him of it. If someone with cancer reads this misleading testimonial, they might not only get a false sense of hope for the Well of Life’s ability to help with such a serious illness, but they could also receive incorrect and misleading medical advice like my father did. You see, they told him after my sister was killed in a car crash (four months prior to his death) that his new and persistent headaches were from grief!

I don’t know which is more ludicrous- the fact that they wouldn’t take it down out of respect to his living children (though his wife does support it being left up), or the negligent bit of misinformation that may have contributed in part to his demise (the “what if” of what could have happened if he had been advised to go to a doctor/got a CT scan at that point will always plague his kids!).

I could get into other distressing details but will not, as this is already painful enough to have received an email today stating they would not take down the testimonial (this is my second request; the first was met with my stepmother contacting me about why she supports it being kept up).

I suggested that if they and my stepmother felt that the Well contributed to his health, (which it arguably may have, in a way, as they do help people eat better and take supplements), that they at least re-write the testimonial to include the updated fact that he is no longer with us, and did succumb to the cancer that they are trying to tout that they helped him with!!!

I’ll let the email speak for itself that I received from the Director of Operations:

well of life testimonial removal request response

(I could write a whole additional post dissecting this email!)

And my last point of contention? For claiming to know someone and their wishes so well (I do have another side to that story!), could you learn how to spell his name?! It’s Garry, not Gary! Sheesh!!

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What’s Good – Most Stuff

I know a lot of you are personally wondering what I’ve been up to, and how I’ve been doing. Good!

I’m just finishing up a teaching year, so I’m sorry to say I haven’t blogged and won’t be able to until June.

But, since some of yo are hungry for a little more, here ya go:


That’s right, ya get a lot of weird bugs out here! Stay tuned. Xoxo

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Student Loan Debt Doubts

I have multiple student loans from both undergraduate and graduate school. I have been doing a combination of deferring, forbearing, and paying what I can intermittently with avoiding and going through major bouts of anxiety over dealing with them (as it looks like not only will I not be able to pay them off in my lifetime, but the multiple loan companies with which I have loans are not happy with me giving away sometimes half of my entire income to them!)

I have seen and read stories about student loan debt and suicide. Take a look at Huffington Post’s The Ones We’ve Lost: The Student Loan Debt Suicides that talks about how a lot of overwhelmed adult students have at least had passing thoughts about it, or read about student loan horror stories here, or any other number of articles like this recent one.

I myself have not really thought about suicide, but I have thought about fleeing the country, or disappearing in other ways. But I am in limbo, paying what I can, somehow getting by paying one and not another company (I think I know what they’re doing- just tacking on more and more high-rate interest), and it is only when I think about how much more money they really want from me, and how little I’ve made a dent with paying over the last 7 years, that I feel despondent. And have a mini-panic attack.

It does affect my life in a number of ways. I was unemployed for a while (and not even able to receive unemployment) and was not motivated to find work because I knew they’d want more money from me. How is that good for the economy?!

It has affected my personal life, especially in relationships. Even if I have worked to get myself in a good position regarding other types of debt, I will always have this huge mass looming over my life, and worrying if I marry someone they will be burdened (which I would not want- they didn’t take the loans out!).

So I see why there is an issue with student loan debt and suicide, and imagine it is really under-reported, and it is complex because a lot ties in- obviously if you weren’t able to find a good-paying job in your field, and then can’t pay your loan bills, you would likely suffer from depression or low feelings of self-worth. Or, worse yet, if you didn’t finish your degree, but still have many loans from obtaining half a degree…where does that leave you?

I know I have struggled with the job, identity, and income balance. I did not realize it would be such a problem for me to go into the noble profession of teaching and causally not being able to pay back loans due to finding work in that exact area (there are multiple stories on this sad thing as well!). And they do have teacher student loan forgiveness, but, only if you teach in a low income school. Seems a little unfair.

Right now, I had some loans come due and let it slip my mind, and now I have to figure out the next step. It’s not pretty. Part of me always does the “maybe if I don’t look at it, it will go away” game. That has not yet worked, of course 🙂 but I think informing yourself and making a plan is essential.

Luckily, working my a$$ off at two or three jobs *just* so I can in theory pay off loans (I doubt I’ll ever be able to actually complete paying off at my income/debt rate), is not a priority for me. I think that if I forgot to have a life, and enslaved myself to an unfair system (yes, it is unfair, but I won’t get into that argument), then maybe I would relate even more to these unfortunate stories.

That is all for now, and quite a lot it was, but I feel a little better sharing, maybe someone will see it, relate, and feel a bit better knowing there is a lot more to your life than your stupid debts.

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Gainfully Employed. Gratefully Elated.

Not only did I find a job, but it is a teaching job.
Not only is it a teaching job, but it is one that I finally love!

(At least most of the time- who knew that could happen?!). This is one of those times I will say it was thanks to the Powers that be, and me creatively visualizing it happening (I mean, I held out for the right job as part of this new phase of my life).

My boyfriend’s helpful reminders that “they don’t call it work for no reason” and “nobody loves their job all the time” (though some people may claim that) have helped me then justifiably call this the perfect job for me! WOOHOO!

About time. Thank God!

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2014 is here!

This year I didn’t make any resolutions, so now I’m not beating myself up about not having made a post or whatever else I think I should be doing.

I’m thinking this is going to be a good year!

Stay tuned…


Good stuff, being really easy on myself. And I’ve increased spirituality in my life- more on that later as well.

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Pfeiffer Fire in Big Sur

I love you, Big Sur! Fire be contained asap, I pray. Healing regrowth on the way!!

I love you, Big Sur! Fire be contained asap, I pray. Healing regrowth on the way!!

Ever since hearing Monday morning about wildfire that started in Pfeiffer state park in Big Sur, I’ve been obsessively following the news and didn’t feel a bit consoled until after hearing today that it is approximately 74% contained- my worry is lessened a bit. I’m not trying to make it about me, like “my worry” is so important.

My concern is, naturally, for those who have lost their homes, and the beauteous nature destroyed. I’m a bit consoled to reflect on how nature is alive and can heal and regrow, granted with a lot of time. It’s too soon to say how much damage has been done (though the news estimates it around 800 acres currently).

As far as those who have lost their homes, my heart goes out to them. I can relate to the grief aspect, knowing intimately the aftermath of great loss, but I can only imagine how hard it would be to lose their homes in such a beautiful place. On the bright side, we can be glad that no one died in the fire- that is quite fortunate!

The story of a young photographer, Kodiak Greenwood, who lost his home in the fire, made a lasting impact on me today.

Just a couple of inspiring quotes from him:

• “A lot of clutter in your life can be a distraction. It clutters your mind.”

• “I feel much more humble. I feel like being a nicer person. I really hope to see our community come together. It is a special thing [when it does].”

And coming together the community is doing. I’ve read about many ways in which the greater Big Sur community is offering to help in this time of great local need. From free meals to places to stay, and a warehouse already filled with donations, there is a huge and immediate outpouring of charity. And from a much-needed financial standpoint, there is the Big Sur Fire 2013 page and a lot of individual/family gofundme fundraising pages, like Kodiak Greenwood’s.

In light of the fire and a recent incident I am not yet to be able to publicly discuss, I have been thinking about my personal “clutter” and possessions and the importance I place on them. I can donate clothes, toiletries, and even electronics to help out.

I really want to reach out to people too. There is definitely a counselor-type yearning in me; perhaps I will indeed go back to school for trauma counseling training. We shall see. For now, even though all I want to do is go be involved and helping people personally (like I did every time someone I knew had a loved one die, after my own losses), I will sit back and remember when I have this urge, to act appropriately. I can find out the most beneficial ways for me to help without being there. And I need to take care of myself and my life- finish baking gifts for my beloved friends and family afar, and preparing for Christmas, and taking time to enjoy life. And be appreciative of all that I have.

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It’s So Hard…To Say Goodbye…To Yesterday!!!

Remember that song?

Saying Goodbye to Recycled Paper Man

I still have trouble, six months later, remembering the things I had to say goodbye to, the things I left behind. It was hard for me to move, mostly because I had an over-attachment to my stuff, and having gone through trauma times (2011), it was even more complicated (related to making decisions about what to keep or not, not knowing what my future career path would be).

Anyway, I was browsing my de-hoarding pics (I am not a hoarder, but, after hearing that’s a technique used to help them (taking pictures of things and throwing them away), well, who am I to pretend I’m above them)…anyway, I found this great pic above.

It was recycled paper I had made by hand! Painstakingly. Like, not using the correct tools, and somehow ending up with a decent product anyway (decent enough I used them for my best friend’s wedding shower invites!). And I still had a few, and didn’t want to, but in order to help me get rid of it, I made this little guy.

It’s true. Sometimes it really is so hard, to say goodbye, to yesterday.

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Help! I’m Unemployed and Feeling Worthless!!

“Help! I’m Unemployed and Feeling Worthless!!” Is what I felt a lot since I was “laid off” from my job in August (not enough work for me). But there have been times in the last few weeks (maybe just over a month) where I’ve really started to feel okay as a human being- reaffirming to myself that it is not my job that makes me important or “good” as a human. I’m more than my job, or lack thereof.

But a lot of people identify heavily with their job and gain self-esteem and self-worth from it. An article the LA Times posted just in September talked about this recession spurring 5,000 more suicides than normal. The facts are a little shoddy, and it does emphasize this rate is mostly among men, but there was a slight increase in suicide in American women. Now, I was nowhere near suicidal at any point (if after losing two family members I wasn’t, I don’t think I ever could be!), but I certainly battled feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness, even though the job I had at the time wasn’t even something I really considered fulfilling. I was not passionate about typing things that I did not author!

I really have had to remind myself that a job doesn’t magically bring about any instantaneous transformation for the better. In fact, it can often bring about more stress, anxiety, and other negative emotions (like complaining!). But, at times, I thought I would be just thankful to have coworkers to complain about (if it meant having money coming in and feeling more useful).

But here I am over three months later and I have been striving to create meaning and structure my free-time. I will not lie and pretend depression doesn’t occasionally rear its catatonic pull (I have gotten a lot better acquainted with my TV), but, I have made a lot of headway in my mind with separating work identity and life identity. I have always prided myself on a good work ethic. I still have that. But I don’t want to jump into another job that I don’t like and that stresses me out more than the measly pay its worth.

I’m one of the many unfortunate young American adults with a load of student loan debt and a major in a career field that I wouldn’t even want to work in if I could find jobs! (Maybe that’s not true, I did almost take a French teaching job with adults!). And I do get desperate when browsing Craigslist or aimlessly navigating LinkedIn and almost want to revert back to something like working retail at Starbucks (which really isn’t a bad job considering especially the benefits with part-time), but I resist. I am holding out for a job which probably realistically does not exist in this area.

I’ve had a few leads lately, and I am somehow getting by without government assistance (which I would consider trying to get but I’m lazy and confused from moving?), but it seems you have to apply for and follow up with 18 gigs to even get 2 interviews. And there will likely be problems with those jobs. But, back to my point. I should become a writer.

Oh wait, that’s another issue. In conclusion, I am unemployed and starting to feel okay with having to accept it while it lasts. I have taken up a lot of activities, like writing, cooking, walking, and reading the newspaper in hopes of job posts and connecting with community. And I’m good enough, smart enough, and gosh darn it, people like me (enough to hire me). I hope!
Stuart Smalley Inspiration

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quick, #nanowrimo day 2 starts in 5 minutes!

#nanowrimo day 1 word count: approx. 3,222. yeah. awesome, right? well. i said approx. for a reason. one of the sections i did i might throw out or massively edit and work it back in. i’m feeling like i’m heading in a direction, but still not 100% sure of which way.

my good second writing segment was with a local group write-in and i focused on a chapter: The President.

at the very least, i am writing a lot, and getting down many blips and expanding ideas from crazy life experiences i’ve been meaning to write about.

and my favorite critic, whom i was pissed at yesterday for saying anything about my writing, is today my best friend again (boyfriend). he’s right. i do need to slow down a little and really think. critically. analytically. and craft my writing. i’ll spew out words for national novel writing month, but i’ll focus on also doing some real thinking, planning, and re-writing of small passages, on the side, because i haven’t disciplined myself to do that. need to do that.

and, lucky me, i have the time!

#nanowrimo day 1 word count: 3,222

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coffee curve #nanowrimo – day 1 of national novel writing month, november 2013

write a novel in 30 days? crazy, right?! but over 100,000 people are aiming to do just that.

fueled by insanity, fellow writers’ comraderie, and, of course, coffee!, we aim to do what some struggle to do in years.

that’s a little pompously phrased, because, i have yet to make headway due to debating three or four novel plot lines. plus, the epic book i was going to write had all along been non-fiction. an autobiography/memoir. so now i’m aiming to incorporate humor and creativity to weave a fictitious memoir, with a heavy helping of character and plot concoctions that lay in the days ahead.

i am hopeful. but today i got so excited i got anxious. backtrack- making coffee.

i brewed an extra large pot today. and i knew it would help me get my creative juices flowing, that delicious liquid crack. however, what i knew in the back of my head and ignored, was that there is a bell curve that looks somewhat like this in text:

>coffee >productivity UNTIL PEAKING >coffee = >anxiety and stew and fluffy biscuit- yum! stew and fluffy biscuit- yum![/caption]

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