CBS Survivor Vanuatu Finalist, Dr. Scout Cloud Lee, Speaks Out About Surviving Cancer. How she did it became A FORMULA FOR GETTING WHAT YOU REALLY, REALLY, REALLY WANT.
Long before I made it through the grueling casting process of being selected as a cast away on the hit CBS show, Survivor Vanuatu, I had already survived a death sentence. In 2004 I became a cancer survivor on Survivor.
On January 7, 199l, I discovered a “growth” the size of a half-dollar inside my right arm pit. It seemed to appear out of nowhere. It was hard and didn’t really hurt.
Warned by a surgeon friend that it could be cancerous, I instantly changed my diet, climate, activity schedule and work orientation. I moved to Florida to run on the beach for a while. It was winter in Oklahoma and not conducive to outdoor exercise. I wanted time to “be with this unusual growth”. I didn’t have insurance at the time and wanted to see if I could affect a change without medical expenses. The Federal Aviation Administration offered me a consulting job near Daytona.
My diet of white meat, lots of veggies, fruit, and lots and lots of carrot juice and daily runs on the beach seemed to help. The growth seemed to shrink over a few months. All the while I ran, I prayed and asked my Dreamer to direct me toward personal healing.
One night I dreamed about a redheaded surgeon who was to remove the growth. He wore a white lab coat in my dream. A few days later I noticed a sign at a country clinic that I had passed for weeks. I had thought that it was a vet clinic. The sign read,
“Family Surgery. Walk-ins Welcome”. It was 5 in the afternoon, close to closing time.
I turned around and walked into the country clinic. “Yes”, the doctor would see me, and yes, the doctor was a redheaded country doctor wearing a white lab coat. He immediately surmised that the growth was cancerous and scheduled me for surgery the next morning.
On the morning of July 3rd, I entered a Daytona hospital to have the growth removed with day surgery. Early that morning I had awakened early to run four miles on the beach. As I awakened I saw a sign drop down in front of my face. It read, “The Angel’s Walk With You!” I felt assured of God’s presence.
That afternoon the surgeon was telling my friends and family that I had a serious, advanced form of cancer “with an occult primary” and I had, at best, two months to live.
Other than being somewhat groggy and sore from the surgery, I felt fine. Something definitely seemed wrong with this picture. I was the picture of health and I felt good. However, “denial” is not a river in Egypt! I had to consider the possibility of walking the Spirit Trail sooner than later. I let the possibility sink in…all the way into the depth of my being. It was there that I “knew” that it was not my truth.
The word spread like wild fire. Books, cards, suggestions of diets, and every manner of healing information began to arrive in the mail and on my doorstep. While cancer did not fit my own picture, it certainly garnered fear in others. I understood the precious concern of my friends. I knew that their intentions were good. However, the pile of cancer related material only served to reinforce a reality that simply didn’t fit my model of my world. I kindly returned all material to their original owners and decided to spend each moment very present centered with my own reality and my own relationship
with God. Basically I decided that I was OK with death. Otherwise, I needed to mow the grass and weed my garden! I also decided that I best pack up and go to Nashville to record some of the music that lived in me.
While in Nashville I wrote music, performed at the local haunts, recorded my first CD, and took long walks in the woods of Tennessee. Once I finished my CD I decided to write a book. Two months passed and I was still alive.
My family contacted the Cancer Center of Oklahoma and scheduled an appointment for me. They wanted my results sent to a specialist in Oklahoma. I had already endured the dehumanizing tests to find the “mother node”. Nothing! Months later the Cancer Center in Oklahoma discovered that I had been mis-diagnosed. Instead of cancer A (which is fatal) I had cancer B (which was not only fatal, but untreatable). I was advised to have my right lymph nodes removed from under my arm, and did so to ease my family’s distress. The nodes were clear. I am left with lymphoma, which I care for to this day. However, my family is relieved, and both doctor’s who promised me immediate death are now dead themselves.
This experience with cancer happened many years ago. To the medical community I’m one of those miracles. To me, I’m a child of a great Physician and Provider. Shortly after my surgeries I dreamed about a recently deceased uncle who came to me escorted by an angel. He walked stoically toward me, stood at attention and said, “Your departure date has been extended indefinitely.” I firmly believe that my Dreamer will let me know when my departure date is near. Until then I continue to meet each day and live full out.
I believe that this experience with a “growth” has helped me to grow in ways that only a death sentence can. I have learned to revere my Dreamer. I have learned that the only important moment is the present where all power and knowledge exist. I have touched humility and learned forgiveness. I have learned the other half of praying – listening. I have learned to come to the present moment with an empty hand and an open heart. I have learned to trust that leaves will unfold in time and so will I. I have learned that during my darkest moments I had a sweet relationship with my myself, and this is really all that I need to make it through every moment.
When we’re young, we feel old. When we’re old, we feel young. The truth is that our consciousness and spirits have no age at all. Whenever we sense that we’re not the same age as our numbers, we say “Weird!” We can learn to say, “I’m ageless”. When we do so, the weird feeling goes away. We don’t have to be impatient for being too young, or frightened of being too old.
Through the experiences of survival, I’ve learned life fulfilling lessons. I’ve have learned the importance of finding what we most love and investing our lives in learning all about it. I’ve learned that nothing has meaning until it changes what we think and who we are.
I’ve learned that love lasts as long as we keep caring about what each other thinks and feels. I’ve learned that marriage is more than two people. It is a community, a village. I’ve learned that HOME is the experience where we are free to be ourselves. I’ve learned that our greatest power tool is CHOICE! I’ve learned that the only thing life requires of us is to live with the consequences of our choices. I’ve learned that we don’t have rights until we claim them.
I’ve learned that “like attracts like” so we learn to choose the greatest love of all and then work like hell to make it last. I’ve learned that in the mystery of romance, we still have to solve problems together. I’ve learned that if we lose the romance, we lose the power to go through hard times. I’ve learned that marriage is not two people dashing across a bridge in rice and flowers, but rather the ability to build bridges together with our own hands.
I’ve learned to refuse to indulge myself in despair. I’ve learned that resentment devours our energies. I’ve learned that we must grow from our failures or perish.
I recognize the fruitlessness of wishing back anything that is lost. I’ve learned to clear my mind of unforgiving thoughts. I know that safety does not come from worry. I’ve learned to protect myself by being fully present in the Now.
I’m free to change my mind and I know that when I change my mind, everything changes. I know our thoughts direct our actions. We are responsible for our choices and attitudes.
I’ve learned to pray and live life as answered prayer. We must perceive the light in any situation. We must laugh softly at ourselves and know that amusement without mockery is truly Divine.
We must escape the insipid habit of blaming others or ourselves. We must ask for what we want. We learn to offer sincere praise and appreciation. We discover and utilize ours and others talents. We are soaked in the power of imagination and Spirit. We celebrate fun.
We must recognize the pain beneath our anger, and we must dare to let our tears cool the fires of our hurt. We must move to the center of pain, and know it and allow it to soften. We must give our anger to the sky where there is lots of room. We must go alone to spill our words of concern and make room for the void that welcomes the solution to any problem.
We must face our fears, and recognize fear as an invitation to grow by learning something new. We must release our attachment to ego, knowing that we would rather be happy than right. I’ve learned that to figure out the solution to any problem, we need to feel more. Our hearts must be involved. We must release the problem from the grips of our minds where it only grows bigger and we grow smaller.
I’ve learned the power of intentions. What we intend will surely manifest in our lives. We acknowledge the mirrors in our lives, and accept our responsibility in every manifestation. We hold others’ hands yet think our own thoughts. We love deeply and with abandon. We look always to make the contents of our mind a happy hunting ground.
We turn everything over to God, Our First Mother, The Great Mystery and Trust that we are guided awake and sleeping. We cherish our children. We know we are all children. We make our decisions so that it will be good for our children out seven generations!
The age of seeding has come and gone and we offer immense gratitude to our ancestors. Their seeds are blossoming in each of us. We now reap what we sow.
We honor ourselves as unique representations of God. We understand God manifests in every color, shape and inclination. Truly, we have come to know that what we do to another we do to ourselves.
We hone our energy to vibrate with the pulse of love that resonates deep within our soul. We follow our homing device that draws us always to love one another. We show up to join hands in the Sacred Circle.
We walk with and honor the balance born of our wholeness. We have come to know the power that is Peace, and now we pass it on.
Living without food, shelter, and clean water in Vanuatu only served to remind me that my days of “not having” brings me to the truth of having always everything that I need.
Today people call me “The Survivor Lady”. They, of course, are referring to my finalist win in the CBS Show, Survivor Vanuatu. However, they serve to remind me that our deepest happiness and true survival depends on the peace and compassion that we grow as we grow through our “growths”. Attention! Attention! Attention! Paying soft, focused attention to the present world as we see it is our greatest act of love and compassion. Sometimes mowing the grass, writing a book and singing a song is all that is needed to heal ourselves. SHAZAM! The Formula For Getting What We Really, Really, REALLY WANT, is all about the principles that literally saved my life.