I read somewhere once, that every 7 years, your body is entirely new: that our cells are regenerating every day, and that everything from our skin to our bones, to our organs and tissues are entirely regenerated within 7 years. I liked the notion of this. I consider it a notion, because I'm not sure it's entirely so- at least in my understanding of it, as I imagine it to be. As I think about it critically now, I'm imagining a lung, riddled with cancer. Black. The kind they show you pictures of, from cadavers, when you're in high school, and they're encouraging you not to smoke. If your lungs are completely regenerated within seven years, then why do people die of lung cancer? The Cancer regenerates faster, than the healthy cells. In yet undeveloped Cancer, If regeneration is a constant, and smoking is a constant, then I guess they must cancel each other out. But I've also read, that once you stop smoking, within a certain amount of years, the damage-the visible damage, that the tar and nicotine have inflicted on your lungs, can actually be undone. I'm not sure you can undo Cancer, by stopping smoking: but the wear and tear that the tar and nicotine that each cigarette wipes on your lungs, like muddy work boots wiped on a rug, I guess that kind of sullying, that kind of soiling, can in time, with consistent introduction, of air that is clean, and consistent subtraction of contaminating factors, regeneration can occur; new living, breathing structures.
I'm thinking about these things, as I read the posts each day on a leadership blog. I'm thinking about the things I read, which resonate with me: things which may be new to me, yet immediately ring true- things I might have already caught wind of, but haven't yet been able to incorporate, or make habit. Things I haven't been yet able to manifest. I'm thinking, that in order to make anything new; in order to create a regenerated me, I might have to start totally fresh- I might have to completely let go of many many things: ideas, beliefs, labels, resistance. We shed cells of our skin every day. I've read somewhere that the majority of the contents of our vacuum cleaner bags are skin cells. I don't want to envision what we'd look like if we didn't shed our skin. At least it happens without our really knowing. At least we aren't snakes. Actually, maybe it would be easier- if we didn't have the subtlety of growth- the growing pains- but bam! There we were, all of a sudden, in a completely new skin- pink, bare, smooth, without shade nor sun screen, under the blazing sun, straight up fodder for sunburn.
I read somewhere once that skin cancer, which appears on your body as an adult, began, in fact, in your childhood. Maybe I didn't read that one somewhere-maybe my Mother implanted that one in me. Not as a child, because there was no such thing as sunscreen then- but as an adult. But raw sunburned skin, has a tendency to regenerate quicker. Or perhaps just more noticeably. It doesn't have a choice.
I said that I guess you can't undo the Cancer, once it's turned Into Cancer, but That's not entirely true. Cancer has been known to recede. I've read that somewhere. I've heard of these spontaneous healings.
Without the assistance of chemotherapy or radiation.
I guess the body, a collection of cooperating cells, makes a decision- and gets to work, ousting those cells that are threatening it's thriving, and forces itself to become stronger. In order to do it, it has to lose the old notions which allowed the Cancer to invade from the start. It happens, by some concerted agreement, among a collection of cells, who decide it's in their individual, and collective interest to do so. And they had to decide that the alternative to the Cancer was much greater. And they did, and they do. Instead of focusing on fighting the Cancer, they decide to accelerate the regeneration process to the point where the ratio of healthy and thriving cells to cancer cells, far exceeds it. And before long, those healthy cells engulf the Cancer, leaving no trace of its wrath. I didn't read that anywhere, I just think it might be true. So I will try it. In order to make anything new; in order to create a regenerated me, I might have to start totally fresh- I might have to completely let go of many many things: ideas, beliefs, labels. We shed cells of our skin every day, I must shed resistance too, and build something entirely reborn, and new.