Emmy’s Journey With Cancer

I am observing my own energies – which often reflect the energy around me. I ask myself – What do I really feel right now? I spent the Spring and Summer walking along death’s steep rocky descent with my mother as she went through her long grueling journey towards transition. I stared eyeball to eyeball with death’s hot breath on my face, and pondered the horror and the grace of  life being over, with both great fear, grief and curiosity. Now, I’ve had 2 months of dealing with whether there is cancer in my body and stepping into that whole new world of what happens to us when we face the big C word. I sit gazing at my big welcome to Roswell Park Cancer Institute folder – filled with all the information I need to maneuver my way through everything from billing to writing down questions for the doctor appointments. I’m initiated into that new club. I don’t know what the feeling is – but it’s not one I’m comfortable with – maybe revulsion.

Some say that Thyroid cancer won’t kill you so it’s a good cancer to have. There is NO good cancer to have if you need to face surgery, hospitals, re-arranging your life with doctor appointments, tests, scans, 2nd and 3rd opinions, checking out alternative choices, recovery time, and the overwhelming pervasive changes that sweep through your spiritual, mental, emotional, physical self. There is NO good cancer when you realize your body tells you she is unable to fight cancer cells and now there is that looming possibility that it might appear anywhere else too. No – you step into the underworld when you are faced with cancer. You plunge into a new journey – not of your own choosing, and you learn all about what you really believe about healing. Everything else stops mattering for some moments while you grasp that you are responsible for loving and nurturing yourself along this path of the unknown. Suddenly you need to really trust the doctors you work with – both alternative and allopathic and you desperately scan their faces trying to see if you really exist as a person before them – or as just another illness. You suddenly want to banish any junk you’ve been carrying in your psyche and cells that might cause any stress on your being. “Heal “- you scream at yourself. “Heal” – you whisper. “Heal” – you beg!

I am a realist. I tend to accept what comes and deal with it. I am an optimist and I have an indomitable spirit – and that is a gift. I believe in magic – the kind that says I can change my perspective and that will change my world. So when told I have cancer I take my moments to pull in and close myself off in dread, fear and writhing discomfort of being. I allow all feelings to surface – fromsheer terror to “oh hell I can beat this,” and then to “Do I fight cancer, or do I work with it?” Do I dare ask the question – “Cancer what are you trying to tell me?”- and I ride that roller coaster. No I never did like roller coasters but there is no denying the highs and lows, and that stomach up in your throat experience of dealing with the reality of cancer.

I have always had a passion for spirituality. All of my life I have soaked up, like a sponge, everything I could learn about every spirituality. For the past few years I have delved into studying Shamanism as a way of self healing and this seems to be my spiritual home. Now I have been challenged to hone in on the material I have learned and begin to really practice what I know – and develop my intuitive skills. Cancer is the gift that will spur me on to examine and use my knowledge as well as to realize how I have only barely scratched the surface of the powerful knowledge the indigenous Shamans have of working with nature and energy healing. I have come to respect that doctors and scientists have great knowledge about our physiology and can work with symptoms of a disease but there is so much more to the human spirit!

Many great spiritual writers from Thomas Merton, Mircea Eliade, Pema Chodron, to Joseph Campbell and Alberto Villoldo and Sandra Ingerson and so many more, have filled me with the certainty that I am a warrior. I am the kind of warrior who is learning to face every aspect of my being with courage, with self love, and truthfulness, I am one with all of life and through careful observation I learn how to BE in this Universe. Learning to accept and love and nurture my fragile and vulnerable self   without judgement is necessary in order to to begin to expand into my own power. This is my lesson in love and acceptance. I often walk in the woods and just lately I have been drawn to observe how the gnarled roots of the trees seem to hug the earth with such a force of love. I allow that energy to fill my being. I breathe in the pure energy of trees as they dance with the sky and send love into earth, and know I am connected in a forever covenant with every aspect of life. This is my religion. This is my healing. This fills me with wonder, with peace, with the ability to let go of what no longer serves my well being.

An analogy I can make – maybe not the best – but this kind of reminds me of when I chose to homeschool my son. Taking my 6 year old son out of school when I was a full time teacher was like jumping off a cliff and realizing I had wings to fly. It was at once terrifying and freeing! My son and I experienced learning in so many rich ways that never could have been had I kept him in traditional school. What I chose to do was bold, brave and crazy from the perspective of many. It was unthinkable to me too but I followed my own intuition and have never regretted it. I was challenged to hone in on what I believed about learning after being a teacher in the system for 23 years. The results were so amazing and life altering. Yes I think as is often the case, one experience prepares us for another, and that experience maybe prepared me for this one. I think of being told I may have cancer in the same way. I have jumped off a cliff. I have plunged into the underworld to learn essential lessons of living, healing, and dying, and the results will be amazing! I won’t know if I have cancer until I have surgery to remove at least part of the thyroid and they can then biopsy for results. I choose now to wait and allow myself to heal for 6 months and have another ultra sound. At that point I accept whatever is meant to be. I choose health and wellness. I accept with love what will be.

We are not helpless or hopeless! We are the magical people! There are many things we can do to be our own healers and maintain an inner core of peace and tranquility amidst the storms of upheaval and change. Transformation requires knowing how to touch into our own alchemy process and listen and be still, breathe and BE. Alchemy is that ability to transmute our deepest pain, chaos and fear, harnessing the fire within our own power center, into a shimmering, glorious jeweled shining life! I feel your roar – aha – I feel your heart beat quicken just a little!! If you are ready and willing to come alive into refreshing existence please come join us!

On Friday Oct 12 there will be a Dance on the Wild Side Evening of Slow Flow event.
That means we are gong to begin with a Talking Stick Circle, followed by music that will inspire us into a gently flowing movement and energy. We will have some beautiful exercises to work with our inner being and each other. One simple but awesome exercise is sitting back to back with a partner and feeling ourselves breathe, and lock arms and move ever so gently with our partner’s back against ours. We will have long moments of deep relaxation on the floor and some crystal sound bowls and didgeridoo for healing our chakras.
I know this is what I really need right now!! If you are drawn to this and it feels good to think about having an evening of bliss and relaxation please do come join us! If you have a sound bowl or didgeridoo feel free to bring it.

Evening of Slow Flow
Fri 10/12
Studio 30C Essex
7 – 9 PM
Love Donation ($5 – $20)
Studio 30C is on Essex St in Buffalo
Absolutely NO experience necessary!

Please call or e-mail if you have any questions 648 0160
See you soon! Blessings ~ Emmy Your Wild Woman