Thank you for your interest in breasts! LOL
Seriously, this blog was begun for a serious reason. When I first discovered I had “suspicious abnormalities” on both mammograms and ultrasounds, I only told a few close friends. I found I needed time alone to process my fears and feelings. Eventually I realized that 1) it helped me to write about all that I was experiencing, and 2) that I knew there were huge numbers of women in the world who were also being told they had “concerning” mammograms. I decided it could be helpful for others to know there is someone else out there who has gone through the same thing. I decided that perhaps this was one thing I shouldn’t keep bottled up inside. (After all, cancer is hidden inside the body and we would prefer that it be out, out, OUT!!!)
I decided I could share some of the things I was learning — about clinical procedures, the medical system, risk factors, treatment options, about all the crazy mixed up emotions, about support, about preventing breast cancer (what a concept!), about spiritual reflection, finding balance, etc.
As I revise this statement today, it is January 24, 2019, and I have been cancer-free for seven years! (According to cancer.net, the average 5-year survival rate for those with breast cancer is 90%!) As my clinical treatments have been over for some time, I don’t have as many blog posts to add as I once did. However, I have learned that women continue to need the information contained in this blog. There is a lot out there about advanced breast cancer, chemo, radiation, and mastectomies, but there is precious little about the early stages of getting a diagnosis–the “suspicious mammograms” and all the fear that brings up, the biopsies (both surgical and stereotactic), and healing from lumpectomies. I continue to get many women each week thanking me for this blog because they had trouble finding this info elsewhere. Therefore, my old blog (www.thebreastblog.wordpress.com) is being updated to this one. With the help of my dear friend, Randy West, we hope to make this blog more accessible, available, and findable!
I love being a woman. I am grateful to be a woman living on the Earth at this time. I love people, animals, and all of nature. I love photography (most of the photos on this site are mine), art, singing, dancing, and deep connection (including sex.)
I have a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a master’s in Creation Spirituality (a term coined by theologian Matthew Fox.) I love to teach, speak, give workshops, write, draw, and paint. I have been a caregiver for many years, including caring for both of my parents in their last years and months. (I wrote about the experience of caring for my parents and dealing with a three-year spate of deaths in my life in the book, Grief and Grace: Essays on Love and Beauty in the Midst of Dying.) I also wrote a book about intuitive vegetarian cooking which I began the year after my diagnosis and finished in 2016 when my brother was flirting with the idea of becoming a vegetarian. (The Art of Vegetarian Cooking: 55 Easy Recipes to Help You Get Started)
I have an extensive background in the healthcare field as a result of not only private duty caregiving and navigating my parents’ care, but also as a massage therapist for many years, working in the patient safety department of Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, CA, and working in two different hospices in New Mexico and New Jersey (offering spiritual support, bereavement counseling, and coordinating the volunteer program.) I am also trained as a Unergi body/mind psychotherapist.
The older I get, the more I am learning how important it is to be my authentic self. This self would love to share with you and connect with you. Perhaps together we can take steps toward a more healthy life for ourselves and our planet.
May you be blessed!