From the Ashes We Rise: My Nine Month Journey through Cancer

I started chemo and radiation on September 28th. Four weeks in, the burns were so severe that I couldn’t move without excruciating pain, and I had lost 25 pounds from the damage the chemo did to my stomach lining. On Halloween, I became so weak that I passed out and hit my head on the bathroom counter.

I went to my doctor and told him that I needed a break from treatment. He gave me ten days off. This gave me time to heal a bit and restore my electrolytes. I went back to finish the treatment, but within days I was once again weak and couldn’t leave the bathroom due to debilitating, unrelenting diarrhea. I was severely dehydrated and was developing auto-immune symptoms.

That night, I whispered the following prayer “I am scared, but I trust that there is a plan. I surrender. Show me what to do.” I felt into my heart for an answer, and I was able to hear the whispers of people praying for me. I was able to feel the healing being sent to me. I was able to feel the waves of grace that were washing over me.

In that moment, I made the decision to walk away from conventional treatment. I worked with a naturopathic doctor (who happens to be the father of one of my oldest friends), drank the nutrient dense juice packets my friends made for me, and continued to heal and receive healing from so many of you.

Results of the three-month post treatment scans in February showed no cancer at the original site. There were still two small nodes of concern in the pelvic area, but they were much smaller. The oncologist said there was a good chance my body would resolve them. If they were still there in May, they would biopsy and then possibly remove them.

In April, I accepted a position as an in-home family psychotherapist, working with traumatized children and their families to help them heal. One month later, on May 9th, the eve of graduation, I had another scan. When the nurse who was assigned to me told me her name was Laura, my sister’s name, I already knew how it would go. Results show that the nodes which were still concerning in February have now resolved themselves. The cancer is in complete remission.

On May 10th, nine months to the day since I was diagnosed on August 10th, I graduated with my Master of Social Work, Clinical Concentration, from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. In spiritual circles, the number 10 represents completion. There was a number 10 at the bottom of the wrench that my son drew the day I was diagnosed. The journey through cancer is now complete.

In these nine months, I have birthed a new self. One who lives my truth unfailingly but also makes room for the truth of others. Who now sees that all truths can coexist. Nine months ago, I was facing a stage four diagnosis. Yesterday I walked across the stage cancer free. In the audience was my family and friends. My sister Laura wasn’t sitting with them, but she was there with us. And I was wearing her shoes.

For the third time in my life, I have been brought back to life through the love and healing of others. The first was as an infant diagnosed with failure to thrive, having given up on life after five months in the NICU. The love of my mother, father, and sister saved me then. The second was as a twenty nine-year old diagnosed with meningitis and encephalitis. The love and nurturing of John, who would become my husband, father of my children, and partner in my own evolution, brought me back to life in those early days of our journey together. And now, my brothers and sisters of the rose, and all of those who prayed and sent healing, have given me the grace to heal once again. Because the grace of healing has been bestowed onto me, I will spend the rest of my life helping others heal.

Now, I carry that love and healing into world, as I work alongside my social work brothers and sisters to make it a safer, kinder, more compassionate place through the mental health space. I have accepted an additional part-time position at Honeybee Psychotherapy in Wilmington, NC. I will be working with adult daughters and their mothers, helping them to break cycles of inter-generational trauma. This is the next chapter of Evolution Energetics. I will now move it into the therapeutic space, helping clients to move trauma out of the body, empowering them to become cycle breakers, helping parents to heal themselves and their children.

In spiritual circles, this generation of children is called the phoenix generation. They are here to use their alchemic fire to burn away what no longer serves us and build anew. I am here to serve them and their families. Because when we heal ourselves, we can heal our children. And that is how we will heal our world.

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