A Funny Thing Happened

Dr. Al Danenberg Nutritional Periodontist

July 1, 2019 [printfriendly]



A Funny Thing Happened


 A funny thing happened along my cancer journey. But first, some facts:


As a result of my protocols to heal my body “naturally”, I am outliving my oncologist’s prognosis. He has been impressed. My family is elated as am I. My close friends are excited and interested in my updates as I progress. Unfortunately, I am not in remission. But my bone marrow cancer is stable based on my conventional physician’s assessment.


Here’s the rub. My relative stability has triggered a very few people to believe I cried “Wolf” too often. They are disappointed that I have not died yet!




Can you believe this?



Most of my friends and family were shaken by the reality of my mortality. They were emotionally unsettled by my diagnosis and prognosis. Some well-wishers prepared for my imminent death. Based on my explanation of my cancer, many of these guys expected me to die by the end of 2018.


As you know, I’ve written about my unconventional approach to my disease and how my integrated protocol has extended my life expectancy. I am living beyond the expectations of my doctors and the expectations of those who have knowledge about my bone marrow cancer.


But then something unusual happened within my group of well-wishers. A couple of these folks stopped contacting me. They apparently felt I over-exaggerated my terminal disease and embellished the degree of bone destruction caused by this malignancy. They now think I am overplaying my hand to gain their empathy and sorrow.


They are wrong. My fight is real. I have my ups and downs. I’m certainly not apologizing for not having died already. My days are precious, and I try to make them as meaningful as I can.



A Change of Heart

Do you know people whom you believed to be your friends under both normal and challenging circumstances but suddenly changed their feelings about you? Could you put your finger on the reasons they had a change of heart? I’ve given this some thought.


Maybe it’s because they expected a certain outcome, and you proved them wrong. Maybe your vulnerability brought them closer to you, but when you proved to be stronger than they expected, they retreated. Maybe some people were OK with you as long as you stayed within their groupthink. But if you wandered outside of their mindset, they felt threatened or envious. But maybe they fooled you and never were on your side from the beginning.


Two scenarios unrelated to my medical concerns come to mind:


1. You are in a local social group where everybody is doing as well as each other. But you are entrepreneurial, and you can see “outside of the box”. You start exploring a new idea that could elevate you beyond your social group by making a significant contribution to society, earning worldwide recognition, and gaining financial success. You begin to move forward with your plans, and you are beginning to see progress. To many in your social group, they will welcome your accomplishments with sincerity and gratitude. However, there might be a few members of your local cadre who become envious of your achievements. They think, “How could he become so much more successful than I am?” These jealous “friends” hope you will fail in your endeavors so that you return to the humdrum within their circle of status quo.


2. You have written a book – a book that gets excellent reviews. As a result, you are asked to speak as an expert at different conferences throughout the US. Yet, you may never get an invitation within the 20-mile radius of your home. You are not seen as an “expert” in your hometown. Maybe this is part of the cynical nature of your social klatch who knew you before as just a “good old boy” who could never advance beyond your roots.



Not So Funny

Come to think of it, none of this is funny. It is sad. It is unfortunate that there may be people who wish harm or misfortune to come to others rather than success. Some people have such low self-esteem that they feel threatened by anyone within their clique who advances beyond them. Many of these people are suspicious of anything that goes against the “norms”.


I guess this is the way of the world in which we live today.



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  1. So pleased you are doing well and managing your journey as best you can. You cannot control other people and so much is unthinking behaviour and a reaction to something in them or their past. I hope you sail on and follow whatever seems to be a good idea to support your body. Very best wishes, Jenny

  2. I don’t know you. I made your cashew bread once after you posted the recipe on a Dr Hyman forum. It was yummy so I subscribed to your blog. I was devastated when I learned of your diagnosis, but I was aweed by your attitude. You continue to amaze and inspire me.

    I have a different theory for you. I find that many people view the parts of the universe that we understand as science and the rest as impossible. But that’s not how I look at things. I seethe parts we know as science we have discovered and the unknown parts as science not yet uncovered. When I see miracles happening around me, I think about the placebo effect. We know placebos work about 30% of the time, so there has to be a reason why. You are just so tapped into your body that you are able to get your body to heal itself or at least stabilize itself. Can you imagine how the world of medicine and health will be when this science is discovered and we can all tap into it? I think it’s exciting and hopeful.

    A lot of people have trouble with the unknown. It’s kind of who they are. It’s not really directed at you. I think it’s just overwhelming. They need things to fit in neat boxes and you just don’t. This is their coping mechanism.

    Just know that there are probably many people like me who don’t know you but are cheering you on and finding our own ways to handle challenges in our lives by watching you through your blog.

  3. I appreciate you Dr Al. I am ok with your cancer not progressing. However I want it to reverse. For some reason our metabolism has to climb from a deep ditch when cancer hits. Bone and some brain cancers are deep. But we are alive and we can climb. We should climb. I wonder if adipose and placental stem cell and various plasma and other stem procedures would give you a boost. You’re a whole person and you are needed. I want to see you win this.

  4. All I can do is ***sigh, and shake my head. People generally just dissapoint me lately. I pray every day that you become well again. I think you are doing a wonderful job! I just met a new friend whose husband lived 25 years with the same diagnosis as you have. I am sorry that you friends have let you down in your difficult journey. I guess during the worst of times we find out who our “true friends” really are. I look forward to every Monday to read what’s happening next!

  5. I don’t know why people are like that…
    I am grateful that you share your experience in that it may help others. Wishing you many more days of good health, joy and happiness!
    Thank you!

  6. Yes to this post, these things have happened to me and some of these disappearing well wishers were my own family members! Of course the old saying, ” Live and Learn” applies here as well as. The reality is your continued health has actually enabled you to outgrow your disappearing well wishers. Life is truly incredibly strange, unexpected and a wonderful gift all the time.

    Thank-you for the continued newsletters explaining your protocols in detail with links! You have improved my health and wellbeing as I have incorporated a few of your protocols into my and my husbands life. I have
    benefitted from you sharing your journey and I am very, very, grateful.

  7. Congratulations on your success!!! God Bless

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