Geri, Stage 0, Colorado

There will always be THAT ONE DAY. You know what I’m talking about, that one day when you heard the words “you have cancer”. The day when life was split into two distinct pieces: life before cancer, and life after.

I was diagnosed with breast cancer on 7/14/15 and spent most of the next year fighting my way through my own personal cancer storm. My cancer was early stage, but because of my family history, we took an aggressive approach which included a double mastectomy with DIEP reconstruction, which meant a very long 14-hour surgery and many months of difficult recovery.

Things happened so fast in those first days and weeks, and although my patient navigator was helpful in explaining the medical procedures that would happen, I was left struggling with how to manage the severe emotional impacts of my diagnosis. I was angry and terrified and unsure of where to turn.

I learned that healing the emotional wounds from a cancer diagnosis is nearly as difficult as healing the physical wounds, and that identifying the emotions of fear, anger, and acceptance were critical to healing my mind, body, and spirit.

In addition to what our bodies are going through medically, our minds are experiencing extreme trauma, and it does not magically end when the medical treatments do. It actually just begins. Trauma is difficult to understand and even more difficult to heal from. Most people believe that because the event is now in their past, so too are the effects of the trauma. This is not the case. If the difficult emotions are not identified and released in a wholistic and healthy way, the trauma stays “stuck” and whole-body healing is not possible.

My book, Beautiful Lady, empowers cancer warriors to strengthen soul-nurturing techniques that allows them to release negative emotions, boost courage, and rebuild self-confidence, so they can live inspired lives that bring them joy.

Cancer may be a chapter in our lives, but it isn’t the whole story.

Let’s work together to write the next beautiful chapter.