Thursday, May 31, 2007


So, I just bought the supplements for the next three months because...we are leaving on Tuesday!!! And even better news, my brother Kiff and his friend Rich will be visiting tomorrow. I am so excited!!! I have not seen Kiff in about two years (I think) and especially since I was diagnosed. Family comes before anything else. Family first.

The sun is shining today and that hasn't been happening much here lately so that's a plus. Who'd of thought that Tijuana would be cooler than Upstate New York??? Ah well, next time I'll get diagnosed in the early summer so I can enjoy the heat down here...JUST KIDDING!!! There wil be no next time. I have become a vegetarian for life...key word LIFE!

I am still amazed at how low energy I can be after a B-12 shot. I would probably sleep half the day away were I to be without the B-12 and the "coffee breaks." That's what they call them down here. I guess no one wants to say coffee enema. Well, of course I never really noticed that few patients talk about their enemas. And here I am all blah-blah-blahing about every detail of my enema INCLUDING the things that didn't go so well. By the time I realized no one was sharing about their experience it was too late. Anyway, I've never been one to avoid the "dificult topics." This is what's so...get over it. You want to live, right?

Actually the intention is to avoid the chemo & radiation, but down here after all we've learned about allopathic medicine and the enormous amount of money steering the pharmaceutical comapnies, I don't think about avoiding chemo & radiation - the thought rarley even crosses my mind. Yes, I'll do WHATEVER it takes to live. However, I don't question the power of Gerson Therapy. This is all making sense. Now if I can just relax while I'm sticking that 3" needle in my backside. Eeeeuuuuuhhhh. I shiver every time I think about it.

Meeting with Charlotte Gerson

We received some very important news from Charlotte Gerson this afternoon. Apparently, a tumor that has shrunk as a result of Gerson Therapy, can grow back if the patient gets a cold during the first nine months of the treatment. So, what that means is that I can not be exposed to anyone that even has thoughts about having a cold or has been in close proximity of a person with a cold. It's going to be tough enough with a child in school and we ill make it work.

I will have penicillin in my medicine cabinet should I feel the onset of a cold (which feels distinctly different from a healing reaction). I guess I won't be as social as I hoped, and I've got no problem with that. Doing this without chemo & radiation makes it well worth it.

My bloodwork came back fantastic. Ms. Gerson says that after many, many years of doing this work she can spot a person whose life energy has begun to come back from a toxic state and she says that my energy has done exactly that and I look great. Her presence here is such a contribution and her knowledge of the body is extraordinary. As much as I can not wait to get home, I will miss her.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007


This morning Dr. Melendez came and spoke to me. During our conversation she mentioned that the tumor could eventually die and detach from the rectal wall at which point it would be passed. She said it will look like the liver sold at the meat market. Wouldn't that be something? I told her I will cry tears of joy should that day come.

The doctors here are very committed to what they do. They have an incredible commitment. Dr. Cervantes even comes in on Saturday & Sunday to check on his patients. They are an incredible group of people, yet I've heard through the grapevine that they get a lot of heat for having this clinic from the Mexican government as a result of pressure from the U.S. government. It's very, very sad.

Two books we're reading right now:
"The China Study" by T. Colin Campbell
"Natural Cures 'They' Don't Want You to Know About" by Kevin Trudeau

Monday, May 28, 2007


I have traveled to many places in the United States and a few spots across the Atlantic and I have never felt homesick. Today I am homesick. I sat on the beach within feet of the Mexican border fence just watching the people on the side of the United States and thinking about how far away those few feet really are. It's amazing to look at my home and not be able to to simply take a few steps and be there. There were children on the Mexican side of the beach walking through the holes in the fence to the United States. Then they turned around and ran back to Mexico. The border patrol was watching them and an American woman walking on the U.S. side. A fence...hmm. Wow. Reality check.

Right now my legs ache, my back aches, my head hurts, my stomach hurts, I miss my family, I miss my job & being at work with all my residents, I miss my friends and neighbors, and going on walks with the dogs, and I'm sick of eating the same damn thing every day - vegetables. I'm constantly craving meat and cheese with the cheese melting all over the place with a nice side of bacon. Mmmm, and a milkshake. And a coke and roast beef sub from Wegman's with too much mayonnaise. And a cheeseburger. Man, oh man. And, there's no way on God's green earth that I would eat anything but what's on the Gerson diet. Restraint is not the problem, but the cravings are a bitch.

And I can not wait to hear people speaking English everywhere I go. Don't get me wrong. I love being around people speaking Spanish and experiencing this country AND, the language thing is a constant reminder that I am not at home. I am more than ready to be at home and I am definitely counting the days.

Sunday, May 27, 2007


...and now the flu-like symptoms are over and I feel like a million to lunch!


The pain in my knee is GONE. My legs still ache today and they did a bit yesterday as well. Yesterday was a nightmare. Emotionally I was way, way down. I was cranky, grumpy, impatient, angry and exhausted. Yeah, a real joy to be around. They told us to expect it. Then at 10 PM, like the flick of a switch, I felt great. Unbelievable. I turned to Chris and asked him how his day went. Up until that point, I couldn't see past my own nose...

Today I am experiencing body-ache, like a lousy cold without the ear, nose & throat symptoms. Also very little energy. Two hours ago I felt fine. I stepped out into the courtyard and stood in the fountain for a little refresher. I looked up and the kitchen staff were looking at me saying "Roberto es LOCO!" The pool is not warm enough. I will ask them to turn up the heat one day before I go.

The kitchen staff are the best - Chris and I agree on that. They are the angels of this place. I finished a song for a woman named Lola and sang it to her last night. It was a lot of fun. We will definitely miss them. Not to mention they're masters at cooking the Gerson meals. We'd sneak one home with us, but their children would have to come and the house is just too small (and I suppose immigration might have a small problem with that).

Marguerita just delivered my gruel to me and asked to see the family photos. They love to see our pictures of our families and Marguerita always asks how the babies are.

Friday, May 25, 2007


Wow! Charlotte wasn't kidding! Today the left side of my left knee, is really hurting. I have to walk slowly so it doesn't hurt more. It's an old injury that is being detoxified and re-mended with healthy cells. This is incredible. Not that I particularly enjoy leg pain, but to feel the detoxification as it happens is very exciting.

I am lethargic today so I'm going to spend some time outside in the fresh air before lunch. Irritability is also part of the process and I am definitely experiencing that at this particular moment. I just stay quiet until it passes and it always does.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Detox Flare-Ups

Detox flare-ups are currently minimal yet consistent. One regular flare-up is being spacey/foggy every day. Example: I have re-written this entry three or four times and I'm only on the second sentence (and I just spelled sentence "scentence"). The detox is definitely working.

Another flare-up that has been regular is aching in my legs - mostly knees and calves and some hips. Charlote Gerson explained that any continuous strain on the legs, i.e., snow boarding for a few years or the manual labor jobs I held for may years, can build up toxins in the muscles faster than the muscles can flush them out. So, the areas of the body that worked the hardest are releasing toxins. She says I can anticipate pain where old injuries occurred. The therapy will actually detoxify the healed areas of the bones I broke when I was younger and then will re-grow healthier bone. I applied clay packs on my knees last night and it helped. Dr. Cervantes provided me with a Potassium solution to blot onto the pain areas in order to draw out the toxins. It's making a difference.

A third form of flare-up is drowsiness. Usually after lunch I can not keep my eyes open. I imagine the same thing would be happening in the morning and evening were the enemas not so close to the meals, not to mention the Live/B-12 shot every morning after breakfast. That'll wake you up. Chris had a B-12 shot last Sunday and he said the energy boost was almost too much. He went running in order to bring himself down off of it, while for me, it's like having a cup of coffee with breakfast.

Monday, May 21, 2007


I administered my Liver/B-12 shot this morning. Keep in mind the needle is about three inches long. Exactly - real nice. Well believe it or not it was cake. There was zero pain and zero discomfort administering the shot as opposed to any time in the past that a nurse gave me a shot...??? Anyway, the thing slides right in like a hot knife into butter. Ooh! Bad analogy. Anyway, it was super easy. What a relief! Now I can do 'em myself every day.

Two new patients and their companions arrived today. We met one couple. I wonder what is going through their minds? I was all over the road the day I arrived...


One factor I have mentioned very little is the companion. Chris Stadelmaier is my Gerson Companion - all Gerson patients must have a companion for the duration of the stay here at the institute. Chris's girlfriend Jackie is at home without him when his presence there would make a difference to her - Thank you , Jackie. Chris's mother whom he is very close to and sees regularly is at home without him - Thank you, Mama Chris. Chris is in business for himself and all of that is on hold while he is here with me. Chris eats an almost exclusively raw diet which he has had to adapt while he is here since very little of what he eats is available at the Gerson Clinic. He has put his life on pause so that I can heal my body a purely natural way and live to see my children grow with my incredible wife as we grow old together.

It is a huge undertaking to be a Gerson Companion. Chris has little time for himself and the time he has is not of his choosing. He finds time for himslef when my needs have been met and at this point the doctors have me on only about 60% of the standard treatment. Because the tumor is in the rectum, they are starting me slowly. A rectal tumor is vulnerable -it's exposed, so things need to start slow. Chris will be taking on more in the near future. It's not that I couldn't do all of it on my own, but healing does not happen with Gerson therapy unless the patient is resting CONSTANTLY. So, I am required to rest throughout the day. Some days I am too tired or sick (from the detox) to go to the dining room, so he brings me my meals. He makes sure I have remembered to take my supplements, which I forget when I am out of it or sick (again as a result of the detox). Chris prepares the enemas and he cleans the bucket and tube when I am done using them. And when the enema, let's say, doesn't go so well, he cleans it up without a word. To say I am humbled by his generosity and kindness barely touches the surface. I have yet to find the words to express my gratitude.

To comprehend my gratitude, close your eyes and imagine tears running off my face faster than I can wipe them away. I am deeply moved by who you are, Chris. I will be present to love and gratitude for you for all of my life time.

Love Bert

Sunday, May 20, 2007


Tomorrow I will administer a Liver/B-12 shot to myself. It's an intra-muscular shot so it goes into the largest muscle in the body - the butt. Any one noticing a theme here??? Tomorrow will be interesting...

Saturday, May 19, 2007


During the morning I felt great. I wrote a song for one of the staff - she requested it - although her request was in Espanol and she had to ask me a couple of times before I understood her. I am at the point where I am just beginning to understand a ridiculously small amount of Spanish. I catch a verb and a pronoun and start to pull together what's being said. There's no chance I can repeat it...yet! So I threw together a sweet little tune about what a nice job she does and her beautiful smile - all in Espanol. That was a challenge! It's kind of hard to remember the words when I've never used them in my life. I will sing it for her tomorrow.

I never thought I would be looking forward to coffee enemas!!! They provide SO MUCH relief when I'm going through a flare-up. "Who'd a thunk that?" (quote from Dave Wheeler...Pittsburg '92) addressing Brotha D. Sorry. That last entry will make no sense to you if you weren't at Deer Creek with us in '92. On that note, God Bless the Grateful Dead Family. We love you Jerry!!!

Oh yeah, coffee enermas. Who would think I would be so looking forward to them. Before Gerson Therapy, ALIEVE would of done the trick just fine. No more. Now I do coffee enemas to get rid of headaches. And the worst part is that laughing makes them very difficult to retain. And trust me, there's a laughing going on during the process. I won't share any of the things we say on this blog during these enemas. Your mother might be reading this!!!


This morning I felt great. This afternoon felt lethargic. I got into bed and watched a little bit of Spinal Tap the movie then fell asleep. When I woke up my head was pounding. All of these feelings of sickness are a result of the detoxification process. In other words, experiencing it is a good sign. It means the body is detoxifying...powerfully. The doctors have explained that my healing crises (aka detox flare-ups) will begin to occur in a continuous pattern, i.e., every 14 days or so. Eventually my body will create its own cycle and I'll be able to anticipate them. I felt much better following the coffee enema: headache nearly gone and lethargy reduced (caffeine in the blood stream is caffeine in the blood stream). FYI - A coffee enema consists of coffee, aloe vera juice, chamomile tea & distilled water. The goal is to retain it for 15 minutes and it definitely takes something to do that.

Friday, May 18, 2007

At Baja Nutricare with Charlotte Gerson

On the right side of this blog is a photo of Charlotte Gerson & me. She has a very warm presence and at the same time she is very direct and she doesn't dance around the subject. She stands for health and life - period.

Thursday, May 17, 2007


So what does my diet consist of at Baja Nutricare?

Every meal is organic and every juice is organic and each juice includes a Potassium Iodine supplement. In the morning I begin with freshly squeezed pear juice. Then I have oatmeal with slices of papaya, banana and raisins, figs & apricots that have been soaked. For lunch I have Hypocrates Soup (potato & veggies), steamed vegetables and a baked potato with fresh salsa & a tablespoon of flax (or linseed) oil & chopped onions. For dinner I have the same as what I had for lunch with different steamed vegetables and sometimes a little desert consisting of baked oats & apples with maple syrup (like an apple crisp) or frozen banana &/or papaya ground in the juicer which creates the consistency of ice cream. Somewhere down the road, fat-free organic yogurt I will be added to my meals. Throughout the day I am also drinking carrot-apple juice, greens-apple juice & gruel (oatmeal water).

And if you're wondering, it's very ease to get used to when the alternative is chemotherapy & radiation.

Thank you for your comments. I read them all. I love you, too.


Yesterday I went to the beach. Juan the maintenance man gave me a ride. He dropped me off and I sat for a while and was met by Chris Stadelmaier (my Gerson companion) and another guest and two other companions. It took about 15 minutes for me to be captured by the motion of the sea. There's a lot of letting go here at Baja Nutricare. Letting go of the desire for comfort food is the easy part. Letting go of my active lifestyle is a little tougher. Gerson Therapy requires REST REST REST. I feel a little stir crazy, not being able to walk, but I guess I'll get used to it.

So there I was at the beach - irritated, uncomfortable, wishing I hadn't gone. It seems it's all a part of this process. Letting go of how I've done things for most of my life. So, I thanked my feelings for sharing and looked back out onto the sea. Then it captured me and I would have stayed for hours given the opportunity. But considering it would have required me to do a coffee enema right there on the beach, I opted for a timely return to the privacy of my room. As we left, I hoped we would see more dolphins and far more play on their part. The few dolphins we saw were not launching out the water (apparently they were yesterday). Instead they occasionally surfaced and soon they were gone.

I am learning rudimentary Spanish (having "studied" it in college may be having a little impact - but not much!) Didn't do so well at the ole Espanol. We have fun with the staff though. Many of them know little to no English, so we teach each other.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


On Monday morning at 8:30, we were picked up by a shuttle in San Diego and we arrived at Baja Nutricare at 9:30 AM. Two other folks were waiting as well - husband and wife. She has breast cancer and he's not accustomed to this type of diet. We all feel "new" and very curious.

Once in, I immediately had blood drawn and my vitals checked. We were shown our room and had a tour of the facility. Chris and I each have a single bed in the same room. It's a descent space.

I was "walked through" both enemas on Monday. Today I did them with Chris's assistance. Enemas will take some getting used to - shocker!

My blood work came back today and it was very good. Dr. Cervantes said my liver count and cholesterol were both amazing!!! He said it looked like the numbers he sees for vegan patients!!! It should definitely make my detox a little bit easier.

We had a Norwalk Juicer demonstration. I've never tasted carrot juice that was as good as this stuff. All a result of the type of grinding process and (I'm guessing more importantly) the 2000 lb press that's used to extract the juice.

Tomorrow Charlotte (Gerson) will be visiting and speaking to us as a group as well as individually.

I feel great and, I am a bit low energy - the detoxification process has begun. It commonly shows up as fatigue. The flare-ups haven't begun yet, although I am experiencing a bit of a sore throat but only from the evening through the morning. I may have brought it here with me. We'll see.


It's been just over 36-hrs and I'm beginning to find my place here at Baja Nutricare. Arriving was different than I had anticipated. I didn't feel excited when I arrived, I felt resentful. I was annoyed with the other patients and their companions as they relaxed in the courtyard, smiling and talking. I didn't know why, but I was bothered and I wanted to be alone and away from everyone. Once we got situated, I realized that the transition was just a lot for me in such a short time. I questioned if I had made the right choice - like jumping from a cliff into a swimming hole and then wondering, "Should I have just done that?" Of course I should have, but I needed to allow myself that level of honesty. In addition, I only recently watched "Dying to Have Known" (the video about Gerson Therapy) so the whole thing was still very much conceptual. And suddenly we are here, interacting with a proud staff and excited guests and companions.

The guests and the companions want to know, "Are you here as a companion or a patient?" "Is he your brother?" "When were you diagnosed?" "What were the symptoms?" Most folks just cut right to the chase. We're all here to do one thing: stop the cancer from growing and best case scenario, reduce the cancer to the point that a local removal is possible. Everyone here has had surgery except me. Currently there are five other patients here (with their companions of course) so that makes 12 of us in all.

All of us eat our meals together (except one patient and her daughter - they eat in their room). It's buffet style. Most folks happily show us the ropes. The staff already walked us through the process and most of the guests are eager to help. We actually seem to be bonding quite quickly, finding out, "How many juices did they start you on?" "How many ounces are your enemas?" "Are they allowing you any exercise?" [rest is essential when the body needs to heal at this level]

This morning I woke up with a strong desire to play the guitar - first in along time. I asked who might know where to get one. I was directed to Dr. Cervantes and he said he might find one. Later in the afternoon a guitar was brought to me! It's an acoustic nylon string guitar strung with steel strings and most of the strings are strung on the wrong pegs. It's hysterical and gratitude is all I feel - what a treat! I'll restring it tomorrow or maybe send one of the companions out for strings. They seem to go out regularly. The cooks are looking forward to hearing a song tomorrow evening. It will be fun.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007


This first entry is introspective: where I have begun to look...

Today is May 7th and I'm getting very excited about all you wonderful folks who will be seeing me off at the benefit on the 12th. I'm just as excited about going to Baja Nutricare and beginning the process of detoxifying my body.

As I have been reflecting upon this experience day by day, I have been inquiring into what is available to me out of having these cancer cells growing in my body. After the initial shock, the anger, the incredible sorrow and the sense of powerlessness I felt, I was able to begin looking at the purpose of my body having cancer - something that puts such fear into so many of us. I stopped asking "why?" Naturally I have no idea. But, I am clear that I have been provided with cancer - not stricken with it.

Today it occurs as a wake-up call as well as an incredible opportunity for me to take on the health of my body and my mind (something that I usually sacrificed for the great taste of cheeseburgers and milkshakes). On that note, one thing I've come to realize is that some folks will enjoy cheeseburgers and milkshakes up into the final days of a very long life. I, on the other hand, and clearly others as well, do not have the privilege of such gastronomic pleasures. So be it.

I am also clear that nothing of this magnitude occurs in my life without me transforming who I am in some significant way or another. Already, I have made huge strides in humbling myself and asking for the support of others. In the beginning, it took everything I had just to tell a single person that we were having a benefit. And how the world occurs to me today vs. two months ago is very, very different. I have come to learn that people truly love having an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of others. How do I know that? SO MANY PEOPLE have gone out of their way to make this benefit happen by contributing in countless ways - people I have never met and probably never will. I do not live in the same world that I lived in two months ago and I'm clear the world hasn't changed a bit - I have.

The Beginning

How it all came about:
  • Thursday March 15, 2007 - I requested a referral to see a specialist. Why? I was passing too much red blood for too long (and getting no results with my, now former, primary care physician).
  • Wednesday March 21, 2007 - Examination by general surgeon - unknown mass found.
  • Friday March 23, 2007 - Colonoscopy - ulcerous tumor found
  • Tuesday March 27, 2007 - Diagnosed with Stage II Rectal Cancer
Doctor recommend 6-weeks chemotherapy & radiation followed by resection surgery
[resection surgery: removal of descending colon, sigmoid colon & rectum; rebuilding of new rectum with transverse colon and reconnected to anus; temporary ostomy bag for 8 months while resection surgery heals]
followed by 3 to 6 more months of chemotherapy & radiation

  • Wednesday March 28, 2007 - I cried my stinking eyes out, screamed at the ceiling and then cried a whole lot more.
  • Friday April 13, 2007 - 2nd Opinion at Sloan-Kettering
Doctor recommended (same regiment of chemotherapy & radiation) along with permanent removal of descending colon, sigmoid colon, rectum & anus with permanent colostomy.