What Other Leaders Are Saying
  • Jack Canfield... "Reading Unexpected Miracles made me smile over and over again. I know it will do the same for you. Life is full of miracles. When you expect them, they occur more often... this book will help you create more of them in your life."
  • Dr John Demartini... "One of the benefits of Dr John Hinwood's journey is reflected in his excellent writings, which bring individuals hope, and most definitely a collection of facts, more than just one of fads... he shares a life full of miracles."
  • Mark Victor Hansen... "Having read You Can EXPECT A MIRACLE… The Book To Change Your Life I have only three words for this book. I loved it!"
  • Irena Yashin-Shaw PhD... "If you ever have the opportunity to have John speak to your people or at your event, just grab it. He will literally hand you a miracle. Thanks for everything John."
  • Charles "Tremendous" Jones... "Dr Hinwood's life is filled with miracles because of his great level of expectation. His life of miracles has blessed the lives of thousands around the world because he never sought miracles for selfish reasons."
  • Amanda Vaccaro... "John's 'Expect A Miracle' cards ushers the dimension of possibility and invites each individual to be open to receive from this dimension. This card is now my trigger for daily expectancy and gratitude for wonders and miracles."
  • Dr Brian Kelly... "John has a rare gift of being able to communicate ideas and principles through stories and to empower audiences. It has often been said by participants that they felt he was 'speaking directly to them individually'."

Miracle Story

STORIES   REPLYS   ADD REPLY   SUBMIT A STORY

Keith Livingstone



How To Make Lemonade... First You Need Some Lemons

Submitted into: Miracles of Healing & Health Category,

On: 2013-05-12 19:43:04

In July 2007 I collapsed suddenly while writing a report in my newly built chiropractic office in Bendigo, Victoria. I can clearly remember what I was doing up to the moment of my collapse, and how good I felt as I was nearing a ‘completion’ on the task at hand.


BANG!!!! was all I heard. Like a shotgun blast inside my head. Then the darkness imploded to a pinhole of light, just like turning off a television.


I awoke on the floor of my office, on the other side of my chiropractic bench from where I had been sitting at the computer, with two paramedics attending me. My trousers were damp with warm urine.
There were three women standing quietly against the far wall. One was my wife Joanne, the other my chiropractic assistant Lisa, and the final lady was my local colleague, chiropractic neurologist Dr Helen Sexton.


The paramedics’ questions came thick and fast…

”Can you tell me your name?”

“Who is the Prime Minister of Australia?”

“What day is it?”

“How many children do you have?”

In my awakening state, I correctly answered “four children” to the last question, and there was muffled laughter from the ladies. A few minutes earlier apparently I had muttered “Children? What children?”
My left cheek, lip, and tongue felt like I had been chewing on a cheese grater; the taste of blood was salty and raw.


Apparently I’d had a grand-mal seizure, where my whole torso had gone into violent extension, and I’d lurched backwards at full power straight over the top of the chiropractic table. My whole left side was thumping super-fast while I fitted on the floor. I bit down ferociously with my molars on my tongue and cheek.


The paramedics insisted I lie down on a stretcher, even though I felt quite capable of getting up and about, if not a bit dazed. They bundled me into the ambulance for the start of an interesting trip, which was a dizzying rollercoaster of negatives and positives for the next two years, and from which we are only just starting to fully recover from financially, physically, and emotionally now, nearly 6 years down the track. Initially I was diagnosed with a fairly lethal type of brain tumour with a grim prognosis; this was called a mixed anaplastic oligoastrocytoma, a tumour that sent  out a ‘root system’ like a weed would, all through my brain. This condition had a median survival time of eighteen months. An exploratory craniotomy confirmed it was inoperable, but ‘treatable’ with chemotherapy and radiation therapy. The tumour remained stable for quite some time.


A year later it took off again, changing rapidly to the most lethal of all brain tumours; a grade four glioblastoma multiforme. Emergency neurosurgery while I was fully conscious managed to skilfully remove the central core of the tumour, but the specialists still expected that I would last only a few months. In fact, Zurich Insurance paid me out on my life insurance within 6 weeks of receiving the claim form signed by the oncologist and the neurosurgeon. Apparently in the small print of my insurance contract there was a clause covering terminal disease conditions.

I wrote a letter to the Zurich insurance assessor for processing my claim, with a photo of my wife and me and our five young children letting him know how much it meant to all of us. I received a reply a week or so later to say they were delighted to help out, and that they very rarely received letters from claimants or their families. Apparently my letter and our family photo were placed in their board room as a “reason why we do what we do”.


The six figure pay out sum took massive stress of us financially, but after the collapse of my little real-estate portfolio and paying out all the costs that had accrued after my collapse, there was not enough left to do any serious investing again. I didn’t want to let my kids remember me as some ailing guy with a drip in his arm, so I refused an offer of a super-powerful chemotherapy agent.


Not knowing at that stage quite what turn to take, we took the whole family to New Zealand for Christmas, and toured both islands in a motor home. That was a lot of fun, and we then decided to take the whole family on a round-world trip for fourteen weeks, where we hit all the major museums, galleries, castles, and landmarks we could in Europe, went on a Greek Islands cruise, visited Boston, New York, and Colorado, then finished off with a sopell in Fiji. I celebrated the first anniversary of my likely demise by taking a jet ski out past the reef into the big surf, and showing the older kids what their Dad used to do.
This early pay out was a miracle for our family and was an amazing emotional boost to my spirit, to only expect expecting the best possible outcomes.


 Nearly five years down the track from the second neurosurgery, not only am I alive and well, but also exercising vigorously most days, and living as if the condition never occurred. How am I so well when statistically I have only a three percent chance of even being alive at this stage? I think it’s because I’ve never allowed myself to worry about it, or admit it has any power in my life. I also have a strong, basic Christian faith and a loving family.


I won’t deny that I went through some very tough and upsetting times in all of this, but as far as I could I have always concentrated on my best possible outcome.  So if you want to get better from a brain issue, keep acting the way you want to end up; in other words- keep ‘faking’ and ‘faithing’ till you get there. It worked for me.


After continually awaking every day to find I was fine and still going OK, I became more and more used to the idea I was supposed to be here for some time, despite all the doubters. I had my “little issues” with fatigue and financial stresses, but bit by bit I got back to more normal life.


I’ll share a story with you about how I’ve tried to turn every possible negative into a positive. The main thing I’ve found is if you can still laugh, then the cancer entity can’t ‘win’. Fear and worry are the killers.
One week when I was going OK, nearly a year after my first collapse, I was driven up to the little isolated farm property we had by Australia’s mighty  Murray River. I hadn’t seen the property in all the time I’d been ill. The ‘tenant’ we somehow acquired when I was away with the fairies in Bendigo was a chain-smoking bachelor with one lung who smelt of car gearbox, old dog, stale sweat, fusty beer, nicotine and musty marijuana. He also had no idea about paying rent or doing the basic maintenance we asked of him for the modest rental, which was watering and mowing.


He’d held a week-long ‘clothing-optional hippy love in fest ’ with over 200 ‘invited guests’ on the property, and the locals never informed us because he’d told them all in the pub that he‘d bought the property from us. So we’d had the whole Woodstock thing going on; the communal mattress in the middle of the paddock, the bongo drums, and the old iron water-tank stand bodily lifted and moved 200m to the edge of the river for the drummer to sit on top of. It must’ve resembled the building of the pyramids.


He’d also arranged thirteen stolen Council wheelie rubbish bins in a circle around a large gum tree out of sight of the house and the road, and these were all chained to the tree and each other. The wheels had all been removed just in case someone else decided to steal them off him. The bins were joined at their bases by an ingenious sequence of large PVC pipes and brackets, and filled to varying degrees by sawdust, water, human excrement, and toilet paper. Each lid had a hole cut into it for defecation purposes.


Anyhow, you get the picture. Once I’d seen and heard about what he’d done, I left him a note requesting he vacate immediately, with the promise that if he wasn’t gone within two weeks, I’d start moving all of his accumulated junk to the edge of the property to be put into a big dumpster.


When I was dropped off on the appointed day, early in the winter, he and his mutt were nowhere to be seen, and several of his trucks had gone, but all his accumulated scrap iron and junk still filled a formerly empty large shed. Old fridges, freezers, washing machines, beds; copper pipes, galvanized iron, crappy wires; anything that didn’t have a hope in hell of resurrection was hoarded in my shed. Crammed to the edges and overflowing with his treasures.


He’d also let a little paddock right beside the gardens go to seed, and I had no hope of clearing it all up quickly with the tractor and blade because he’d taken my big petrol can and left the battery stone cold dead. The same situation applied to my big ride-on mower; dead battery and no petrol. Luckily the kangaroos and the long dry summer had made long grass a non-issue.


I didn’t have a car, and the local mechanic was away for that week, so this presented a bit of a problem. I was preparing the property for sale, but it was unpresentable in the state my tenant had left it in.
It so happened that the major weed that had taken over my little paddock was a very nasty one that bore a remarkable physical and physiological resemblance to my then-nemesis, the oligoastrocytoma.

‘Tribulus Terrestris’ is a spiteful weed of uncertain origins that is endemic in parts of the Southern Mediterranean, North Africa, and Asia. Its grotesque multi-spiked seed heads look like the face of Satan, and when they mature they harden and can puncture car tyres. The seeds can lie latent in dry sandy soils for years, and can come to life within a day or so of any decent rain. Bizarrely, the central fleshy tap-root or tuber has been used for centuries as a source of male aphrodisiac  tonics.


It has gone by many common names in different countries, including cat’s head, devil’s eyelashes, devil’s thorn, devil’s weed, goathead,  puncturevine, and in Australia: ‘Caltrop’ or ‘bindii’ (pronounced ‘bindy-eye’).


So I had several problems to solve in my time at the property. Any of these problems could have been solved by paying someone a bit of cash to help out. But at that stage, after months of going without any form of income, all reserves were gone, and cash was in poor supply.


In the interim I decided that I’d use this opportunity of being totally alone for the month to work physically all day long from dawn to sundown, and sleep with the cycles of nature. Joanne arranged to visit once a week and top up my food supplies. I’d had enough of becoming a flabby, soft, middle-aged convalescent.


So I decided to use the lack of tractor as an incentive to exercise hard instead. I’ve found, nearly always, that the reason NOT to do something is nearly always the same reason TO DO something!


I’d get woken up at dawn by the cacophony of thousands of cockatoos flying overhead, and after preparing a hot cooked breakfast with coffee, I’d get stuck into the work at hand. I prayed a prayer of thanks for the immediate problems all being solved for me, too.


The weeds were the first major obstacle to overcome. The second was the disposal of all the wheelie bins with their human manure. The third major problem was the disposal of all the junk in my shed.


With my garden gloves, a good rake, and a sharp spade as my major tools, I set about digging out every single clump of caltrop I saw. This was easy, because I told myself that with each one I plucked out by the long tuber, I was destroying yet another projection of the tumour in my brain. The subconscious mind apparently cannot distinguish between a vividly imagined event and ‘reality’, so you can see how that whole paddock got cleared up completely within two days.


It is a fact of physiology that one can perform intense exercise without incurring major fatigue as long as the bursts last less than 10 seconds on average. This intense activity, with reasonable recovery intervals, exercises the most powerful muscle fibres we possess, the Type IIB , using an intramuscular fuel called creatine phosphate that keeps replenishing itself  when given a suitable recovery. It also produces none of the lactic acid that slightly longer bursts of very intense activity would produce. For this reason it is known as alactic exercise.


I’d very vigorously attack the centre of each large weed clump for the alactic exercise burst, then recover with far easier aerobic activity as I raked the large fronds in to the centre of the clump I’d just attacked.
This constant aerobic recovery/ short alactic power burst activity really woke up my whole body, and by the time I’d plucked all the weeds out and placed the ‘tumour fronds’ into thirteen large gatherings I’d made around the paddock, I felt as strong as I ever have in my life. I only stopped for a quick lunch of fruit and toast with marmalade, and a cup of tea.I drank rainwater from a bottle I had with me in the paddock.


Each of the thirteen ‘wheel-less’ 1000 litre wheelie bins was at least half-full of wet sawdust and faeces, and weighed several hundred kilograms apiece. Without my tractor, it would be very difficult to get all of them 200 metres away, up the slope of the paddock and across to where I was hoping to empty them in a ring where I could rake them over and make them into a very large compost pile to stack beside the cottage gardens.


So I cut the chains with the large bolt cutters that my tenant hadn’t stolen, undid the crude plumbing connections, and allowed the stinking liquid in each bin to seep into the sand where it stood. While that slow process was happening, I removed myself from the stench and attacked other parts of the garden with a hacksaw. However, the sawdust in the bins was still absolutely sodden, so I set about dragging these massive weights in very short distances with the resistance of the sand to contend with as well. This was an ideal exercise to build back in some whole-body phasic-muscle core strength. I dragged each wheelie bin to a position beside the removed tumours, and emptied the bin beside it.


Then I raked and shovelled the ‘tumours fronds’ into the empty bins at each clump, and dragged these much lighter bins to my planned cremation site.


I’d already dragged hundreds of pruned branches from my long-suffering fruit trees to the cremation site, and I gleefully shovelled all my amassed tumour material onto the funeral pyre. The blaze was magnificent, and I stayed patrolling the embers until darkness came.


“Keith! get to bed- NOW!!!!” said a voice in my head. It had such authority that I did exactly that and lay down just as the aura of a large seizure came, hovered threateningly for some minutes over me, and then went. I’d gone all day without taking my anti-seizure medication, and with only my breakfast and light lunch. Whatever entity was attacking me certainly hated what I’d just accomplished, but I knew I was being looked after by a far more powerful force.


The next morning, after a very large breakfast, and feeling very happy, I set about the task of gathering up all the drying compost piles back into the wheelie bins. These I then dragged up to the area I designated my compost heap was going to be, beside the cottage gardens.


I had asked the ‘dumpster’ delivery man to leave two of his biggest dumpsters beside my shed full of junk. The dumpsters were massive steel bins I could walk around in, with about 30 cubic metres of capacity each.


There was a cold thick winter mist creeping up from the creek. The sun was a vague yellow orb I could just make out through the fog. I gazed at my very large shed, and set about heaving and shoving several large ancient electric stoves and refrigerators into one bin, when two men I did not know ranged up from the end of my property and suggested that I’d be far better off ringing up the scrap metal dealer from Rochester, another country town an hour or so away. They told me that all the metal would fetch good money as scrap metal prices at that stage were sky-high. They also said he’d bring his loader with him and do the whole cleanup on-site.


I thanked them warmly, and then they wandered away, but not before they insisted on helping me remove the items I’d just shoved into the big bin. “What good fellows” I thought, then considered how odd it was that two ordinary-looking men I’d never seen before would stroll up on my remote property proffering such good advice, in a winter mist, before most people were out of bed.


I rang the dealer as advised, and he duly came and cleaned out all of the shed of anything with metal in it. He and his work partner had it all done in a couple of hours with his special forklift and various useful tools. He said he’d weigh all the different items back at his depot, and pay me the next week by cheque.
While the men from Rochester were emptying my shed’s contents for me, I dragged a large lump of concrete I’d tied to an old thick blanket, up and down the paddock to pick up any stray heads of caltrop thorns from the dust. The blanket I then burnt as well.


In the interim, I had the problem of getting rid of thirteen stolen council wheelie bins. I’d been told by an officious council employee that as the ratepayer on the property, I was responsible for the ‘safe’ disposal of these bins, not the council. He also helpfully informed me that I was personally liable should the Environmental Protection Agency find that I had allowed a portable septic system to be built without permits on my property, which was located in a ‘national park area’.


So, I filled all the bins equally with other detritus I found around the property, then neatly stacked them at the base of the two big dumpsters. These I then covered with enough loose junk to disguise the whole lot.  


A cheque for over $1,300 arrived in the mail at home from the scrap metal dealer, and this was enough to pay for the hire of the dumpsters, and give us a much-needed cash injection at the same time.
I’ll finish up now as it’s getting late in the day and I need to get out on my mountain bike and get my daily hour in. Needless to say I am fit and well, and continue to believe I will be so for a good time yet.


I sincerely hope I’ve inspired someone out there with strategies for dealing with tough situations.
Miracles in life often come as the result of problem-solving exercises, really. You keep going until you decide you can’t solve any more problems.


I’ll leave you with a quote from one of my favourite thinkers: Victor Frankl, who was a Jewish psychologist interned by the Nazis in Auschwitz during World War Two. He made an in-depth study of who survived the camps and who didn’t.


He who has a “WHY“ can live with almost any “HOW”.


Dr Keith Livingstone
Bendigo, Victoria, Australia