Posted by: malechallengemedia | September 28, 2010

Gawler Foundation – Ainslie Meares – Grace Gawler reveals the true story in Grace, Grit and Gratitude – part 4

By Pip Cornall –  extracts from Grace Gawler’s memoirs – Grace, Grit and Gratitude – self published 2008 – To Tell the True Story – free downloads available on Google Books

Ainslie Meares 1978 Medical Journal of Australia (MJA) article gave medical authority  to the inference that mediation cured Ian Gawler’s bone cancer after conventional treatments failed. Grace Gawler’s 2010 MJA article proves he and another  2008 MJA article inverted timelines – to make it appear meditation and a vegan diet cured his cancer.  Grace shows, with photo evidence they both got it wrong! Click here

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My wedding day was not as I might have imagined in my life before cancer. It began like any other day, the night before had been a painful one for Ian, and the Gerson treatment regimen continued regardless. Sue and Tom arrived early and were surprised to witness the daily schedule of juices, enemas, supplements,and injections. They had not seen Ian for a few weeks and his bedridden condition shocked them. Tom, in particular, had an unexpected and challenging morning.
Due to Ian’s immobility, an outside toilet, and his need for enemas, I had bought a well-camouflaged cane commode that had taken pride of place in the corner of our bedroom. Tom arrived exhausted from his week’s work and immediately threw himself onto the chair, blissfully unaware that the previous night and morning’s enema contents were contained therein. He sat for a moment looking around the room, sheepish and puzzled, until he realised the origin of the horrendously unpleasant odour beneath him. Kindly, as it was my wedding day, he gave me a reprieve from commode duties, my usual labour of love. What a friend!

With Tom’s help, I was unusually free of juices and juicing for the day. It is hard to imagine a best man with more unusual tasks! By the middle of Saturday, Kippenross was buzzing with promise and new life, an impending marriage, a new beginning for us while, for some, it seemed an apparent opportunity to say goodbye to Ian. At the last minute, as if awoken from a spell, guests who arrived early rallied and helped with setting up tables, food preparation, music, and other arrangements. It was good to see life affirmed even though some guests wore their grief and sadness under a thin veneer of happiness.

The weather was perfect— warm, clear and sunny for the 28th of February 1976. I was delighted and pleased that Uncle Leo travelled from Queensland, an appreciated effort, given the short notice. The arrival of my parents was also a relief. I remained on tenterhooks until I saw them—fearing they might have boycotted the affair. My dad had an essential part of the service to perform, so their absence would have been noticeable. The long veranda on the north side, formerly Ian’s painting retreat, was transformed, with a bed installed for his use during the service—given he could not stand for longer than ten minutes without excruciating pain. We had a long-sleeved red kaftan made for him for the occasion, tailored by Ruby, our former cleaning lady—its  vibrant colour giving the perception of life while concealing his ill, emaciated body beneath.

He wore his hair almost shoulder-length, a reminder of the radical image that his university colleagues created at veterinary school, replacing the short back and sides of students in previous years. I carried a bouquet of red and white carnations
and wore a straw hat with a red band. Photographic recollections of the day show cameos of concerned friends and relatives, some, caught by the camera, with long faces, more reminiscent of attendees at a wake. Reverend Brown celebrated our marriage vows on the lawn at Kippenross at two o’clock. Waving ribbons of yellow wheat glowed in the heat of the afternoon sun, while my brother-in-law, dressed in full-kilted regalia, played the haunting sound of Amazing Grace on the bagpipes.

There was not a dry eye to be seen. Ian struggled to stand for the short service and, immediately afterwards, he collapsed onto the bed that had been prepared on the veranda. From there, he sat like a guru giving audience to his devotees as they
fussed around, bringing him gifts, food, and drinks. People may have thought we were stupid and naïve, but, although unspoken, I think under the circumstances, they admired our courage. Strangely, no one asked the obvious questions on the
day; once again, it was like having an elephant in the lounge room and pretending it was not there! Questions visible on the faces of guests, such as why I said yes to a dying man, wasn’t I scared of the future, will there be a honeymoon and so on—
remained unvoiced.

Most situations can invite humour, and our wedding feast was no exception. While guests munched on their tasty delicacies, beautifully prepared by Ian’s stepmother, Ian on the other hand had a ‘special’ vegetarian meal prepared with love by his well-meaning sister. She presented a silver serving dish with an equally splendid silver cover that made Ian’s eyes light with expectation of a non-Gerson-diet wedding feast. However, when he lifted the cover he was confronted with nothing but a mound of chopped lettuce and a whole, raw zucchini! Initially he thought it was a spoof on his newly found vegetarianism and he burst out laughing. “All right”, he chortled, “Where’s the real food then?” Oops! He looked at her face. It was not a joke. She had sincerely tried to prepare something according to his diet and simply had not known what to do! It was a magic moment.

This magical moment, Ian’s face in disbelief, hers so earnest, the novel wedding dish—changed the tone of the afternoon—with everyone, including us, seeing the funny side of the incident. It was a terrific day, a happy day for us and I knew that this was an all-too-brief respite before the challenging times ahead. All too soon my wedding day passed. Despite acknowledging the choice I had made, I could not help but think of guests going home to their normal life, while I was back at the juicing machine, giving injections and delivering coffee enemas, not everyone’s idea of a romantic wedding night.

Intense night-sweats began to plague Ian, and they surged on our wedding night. In combination with his pain, sleep was non-existent with me changing sweat-saturated sheets and towelling him down all throughout the night. We had been married for only a few hours when it became evident that Ian’s symptoms had changed dramatically. Something seemed to be seriously wrong. Married on Saturday, hospital on Monday.

A honeymoon seemed out of the question. Monday morning saw us Melbourne bound and back to Dr K, Ian’s surgeon and a kidney specialist. More X-rays and blood tests ordered, we stumbled our way through the medical diagnostic maze, that this time also included an intravenous pyelogram to determine kidney function. A few horrendous and anxious days followed before we knew what was happening. Ian’s right ureter obstructed—caused by pressure from the large bony tumour in his groin, which in turn created a backpressure of urine. Unable to drain, the blockage caused his right kidney to swell. “Can’t you remove the kidney?” I asked the doctor.
“Under normal circumstances yes, this would be possible, however…”. There was a long pause, his voice trailing off into the distance. With an extended hand, the doctor indicated that I should take a seat. “Is it bad news?” I asked tentatively.
“Yes, I’m afraid it is”, he replied. “Unfortunately, there has also been some development of the bone cancer in Ian’s left lung”, he said, pointing to the X-rays on his wall. “I am so sorry, but there is no treatment, no course of action.

Take him home and when it gets too much for you to handle we will admit him into palliative care for pain management. A morphine drip will help him die more peacefully. I suggest you go home and make your plans and arrangements.” I was flabbergasted, while Ian tentatively asked, “How long do you think I have doc?” “In my opinion; two to three weeks at the most; I’m very sorry.”

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