We watched a Ted Talk by Eve Ensler, done in July of 2005, long before she had any awareness of the cancers that may have already been forming in her body.
Eve Ensler's memoir about her walk with cancer, In the Body of the World,
was published this year. It's an amazingly creative piece about a very personal crisis. Eve has never hidden anything from us, and continues to bravely shine light on the darkest, densest shadows on our planet. For this, I am in deep gratitude and sisterhood with her. I read the book in one compulsive day. It is probably the most compelling book I have ever picked up. I won't go into too much of the content of the book, but here are a few quotes:
"I had a bisected colon, a missing rectum, a bag, and absolutely no idea how food was ever going to work or where it would end up. In my visual imagination, all my missing organs and remaining organs were confused. And yet all I could think about was a hamburger."
Excerpted from the chapter, How'd I Get It?
"Was it tofo? Was it having an abortion and a miscarriage? Was it the exhaustion of trying to change? Was it the city? Was it the line of two hundred women repeated in hundreds of small town for many years after each performance, after each speech, women lined up to show me their scars, wounds, warrior tattoos? Three Mile Island? Was it my father dying slowly and never calling to say goodbye? Was it bad reviews? Or good reviews? Was it being reviewed? Was it shopping and needing to shop? Was it Froot Loops? Canned chop suey? Was it birth control pills? Was it not enough boundaries? Was it too many walls?"
I highly recommend the book.
A final quote:
"In some ways I feel I look much better than I did before the cancer. It cleaned out elements of my past that needed to go. When you come from violence – my father physically and sexually abused me – you are rooted in a type of ongoing self-hatred and I feel that the cancer was a traumatic experience that purged the last vestiges of that. I no longer feel like anybody's victim." Eve Ensler, The Guardian, Friday, 11/25/11
Here is a more recent Ted Talk that consolidates information about Eve's awakening, in her own body, of the poisons and toxicity of the world we are now inhabiting. Warning: this is intense!