Step into Kalene Parker’s humble home on Tyler Lane and one might get the impression that she’s an ordinary middle-aged woman who lives in the Santa Clarita Valley, but that couldn’t be further from the truth, seeing as she’s beaten cancer once before and is trying to do it again.
When she moved to Canyon Country in 2005, it didn’t take long for the Bay Area transplant to fall in love with the family-oriented community, wonderful scenery and a new church.
The former theater actress soon found a job as a substitute teacher and adjunct instructor at an alternative adult education university, but her life would be forever changed in October 2012.
“It presented itself with bleeding from somewhere you shouldn’t be bleeding,” Parker said, painfully remembering her diagnosis of breast cancer, which has now advanced to stage 4.
After calling her aunt, a registered nurse, who demanded she go to the hospital, Parker scheduled an appointment and endured weeks of thorough testing.
Like many times before, Parker stopped in to one of her regular doctor visits prior to a night class she had to teach, but this wasn’t the average doctor visit.
“The doctors sat me down and said, ‘We know what it is. You have cancer,’” Parker said, “and I remember having two reactions.”
The first was surprise, she added, “but my second one — in all honesty — was I don’t have time for this.”
With the grim news and students waiting for her, a distracted Parker went to teach a class where she would be evaluated by another instructor.
The next few weeks and months went nothing like you’d expect, Parker said.
“Those who know me, know I’m a Christian,” she said, “and I believe that we serve a God who speaks to us and communicates with us through His word.”
At the moment she was diagnosed, “as doctors were saying, ‘You have cancer. You should have a mastectomy. You should have a double mastectomy, and radiation and chemo,’” Parker said she heard the Lord.
“God doesn’t always speak audibly,” Parker said. “It’s usually through an impression or something, but this was audible. He audibly said, ‘No.’”
Searching the internet
After adamantly telling the doctors she wouldn’t be taking any of their suggestions, Parker said she rushed home and began scouring the internet for answers, “because God didn’t tell me what to do — he just said no.”
She found a facility called Oasis of Hope, which had everything she sought, including alternative and natural cancer remedies that focused on killing cancer cells without the toxic risk that chemotherapy brings, Parker said.
The only drawback was it was in Mexico, and given the costs, which she’d already struggled to afford, she thought it was impossible to seek care through Oasis.
As a result, four months would pass before she found an answer.
“In January of 2013, my alarm clock went off one morning,” and it wasn’t the usual static that struggled to come through, Parker said. It was Cherie Calbom, The Juice Lady, and she was talking about the effects of juicing and how it can heal the body.
“It was a revelation for me,” Parker said, so she emailed the radio station to get more details about the woman.
“I went on the website and thought that’s what I’m supposed to do,” Parker said, “I’m supposed to completely change my diet and revolutionize how I eat and what I put into my body.”
With a clinic upcoming in six months, Parker knew she had to go, but she didn’t have the $1,000 necessary to reserve a spot.
Determined, she called the clinic and explained her situation and said she would be attending no matter what.
Three weeks from the clinic, Parker still didn’t have the money but she called periodically to check and see if there was still room, until one day, the clinic called Parker.
“We’ve never had this happen before, but somebody donated a seat for somebody to attend the clinic and it’s paid for. I thought of you, so write an essay,” Parker said she was told.
Writing an essay
“It was a Monday, and I remember because the day before, when I was at church, I said a prayer asking for God’s words,” Parker said, “and the next day (the lady) called to say I had to write an essay.”
Of course, Parker went right to work on the essay.
“I got the spot, went to the clinic (using her aunt and uncle’s airline employee discount) and by October the doctors cleared me,” Parker said. “They couldn’t find the cancer (because) I followed God and did what I was supposed to do.”
Everything was good for about two years until Parker started noticing symptoms again in 2016.
Due to her unwillingness to perform the painful biopsies and hear the same spiel from doctors, the cancer — which had returned and developed into stage 4 — went unconfirmed, Parker said, “but I knew what was happening.”
Despite family members pressuring her to go through chemotherapy, Parker’s resolve remained strong to beat cancer without the toxins.
Knowing she’d need more money to afford the “out-of-pocket traditional doctors,” Parker said, she would begin working as many as five jobs simultaneously, while still struggling to make ends meet.
“It made me angry that I was willing to work so hard and so much during the day and night, and not be able to get ahead or get help,” Parker said, but she kept persisting and would land a job in the classroom again earlier this year.
Things weren’t great, but she remained positive and able to work until March 28.
“I remember feeling a thud and the next thing I knew, I felt a girl patting my hand outside on the concrete,” Parker said. “During the nice ride in the ambulance, all I could think about was money.”
When a clinic called to set up an appointment on a work day, Parker said she screamed at the employee, prompting her to seek out a mental health professional.
Thanks to her best friend, the mental health professional and the support of Hope Vineyard Church, Parker was able to take time off of work and focus on her health.
Similar to 2013, Parker hit the internet and began to call places that fit her requirements.
Doctors said she would die soon, “but what better opportunity for the glory of God to make himself known than stage 4 cancer when nobody can say that I was accidentally healed,” Parker said. “The Lord never changed what he said, so if I want to live then my obedience matters.”
Parker decided she was willing to do whatever it took to get healthy, so she made the call to Oasis of Hope, the in-patient facility she had found in 2013.
Following the liquidation of her mother’s retirement accounts, Parker was able to go into the alternative hospital for the first time and found great success there.
“I can tell you the tumors are shrinking. I can feel the difference,” Parker said. “People keep saying that I don’t look like a cancer patient,” but she always retorts with the fact that she’s not a chemotherapy patient.
Despite her success with the treatment, Parker said she fears she will be unable to finish it due to a lack of job prospects, income and the $15,000 needed before her next visit.
Even though she has raised 25 percent of her expected goal, Parker said, she is far from finished with her journey to beat cancer, which is why she set up a GoFundMe account. (gofundme.com/y8vf5-healing-for-kalene)
“I’m not able to work or return to what I (was) doing before,” Parker said, “but we’re a community who enjoys donating to causes, so I’m asking the community to save a life that they know.”