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A Powerful Healing Map

By Jeannine Walston

I am no stranger to intense cancer experiences. I have been following my own healing path since a brain tumor diagnosis in 1998, a journey that has included three awake brain surgeries, radiation, and chemotherapy plus hundreds of integrative cancer therapies. Along the way, I have discovered my lifetime purpose is to help others affected by cancer. Attendance at The Center for Mind-Body Medicine’s training events with James Gordon, MD specifically emphasized the importance of self-care strategies and supplied valuable tools that have enabled me to assist others with their quest for healing.

I often meet with cancer patients and caregivers to talk about various ways for curing and healing. Many show courage combined with a vulnerable tenderness. I can hear it in their voices. They can feel overwhelmed — in search of the best treatments, the best therapies, and the best skills for how to deal with stress — and they need to learn how to care for their whole person.

One woman I met with was dealing with breast cancer. We worked together identifying her providers and treatments, including genomic testing using personalized medicine. Blood tests were also informative, including improvements with lowering inflammation and sugar levels. Food as medicine became a new discovery in her life, too; now she loves eating vegetables and other healthy foods. I also told her about Dr. Gordon’s work and ways to incorporate mind-body wellness. One of her favorite exercises is a four-minute Soft Belly Meditation. Together we created her own personal daily self-care routines. Not only does she feel much better, but her cortisol levels have decreased!

Everyone deserves the opportunity to discover and experience self-care. Through focusing on total care, people can manage challenges and confusion caused by cancer (or any ailment) and activate their own powerful map towards optimal health and healing.