Monday, December 17, 2012

Off to WEGO I Went (I Joined a Speakers Bureau)

This was the announcement WEGO crafted regarding my joining their speakers bureau.  While I like more personal tones to things, I thought it covered nicely what needed to be covered.  I just recently posted on Facebook about my desire to take what I have experienced, and what I know and take it to people who might be able to benefit.  I guess - in some ways - that makes me a "Health Activist."  

Not sure what I think of that label, quite frankly.  I would just like to think of myself as someone who wants to make a difference for another and do something that means something to another, as well as myself.  I suppose if I am actively doing it, it makes me an "activist," but still... 

Below the announcement I will share what I posted on Facebook so you can see where I am at the moment.  I have a lot of work to do.  I am already overwhelmed (in a good way) by the response I received from  Shelly DeMotte Kramer who put me in touch with  Liz Scherer who also responded to me, and gave me more information, and more people to contact and who also recommended WEGO.


I just applied to the WEGO Health Activist Speakers Bureau and I thought some of you might be interested in learning more about it as well – it’s a great way for Health Activists to share our stories, raise awareness and get the word out about the work we’re doing.

Members of the WEGO Health Activist Speakers Bureau receive exclusive invitations to present at conferences, speak to members of the media, and be featured on WEGO Health.

Interested in joining the WEGO Health Activist Speakers Bureau? Apply today! It only takes a few minutes and they’ll email you as soon as they have opportunities relevant to you and your interests.


I have been thinking. 

*uh- oh* 

I know. 

It can sometimes not be such a great place when I do that, especially lately. But this time it is different. I have been trying to think about what is next. I feel fairly strongly that I could do something in relation to those who are dealing with cancer, and as I write (type!) that it occurs to me that it can even apply to those who are caretakers. I know taking care of someone who has been diagnosed with cancer can be a challenge. I know that from being on the side I am on, and from seeing a friend have to deal with it - more than once.

I used hypnosis when I was going through chemo. Did it help? Honestly, I haven't a clue. How would one test it? There can't be two mes on the same track at the same time to compare experiences and whether or not hypnosis made a difference.

Do I think it made a difference? At the very least once a week for many weeks I was blissed out while I was infused with chemo. I would trance for several hours and awaken from the state feeling like I had the best sleep ever. The nurses were always amazed at how out of it I was. Often my blood pressure at the end would be lower than it was when I started. I was told that usually it was the opposite, that chemo usually raises a person's blood pressure.

There were many other things I did, too. Reiki, Massage, Acupuncture, a variety of "energy work." I also made lifestyle changes, and tried to avail myself of the things that would help me the most, which wound up including a blog that I kept since being diagnosed (http://anewme515.blogspot.com/). I am sure there are other things, but the last several months were like pieces of a puzzle working and coming together.

My last pet scan said I have no cancer in my body. Wonderful news. Now I can do what I can to start to make a difference for myself and others by looking forward. But I am not exactly where to go, or what to do, or who to talk to. I am just beginning to research possibilities.

Interestingly enough, several years ago I contacted the people that I am now dealing with regarding hypnosis, and they had no interest. When I got there, and I asked them about it, and since there was none I gave them a hard time, as they do so many other things. Last I heard, they are working on incorporating it.

While they would be ideal for me to work with, apparently there is a problem with the fact that I am still being treated by them. So...I need to find other avenues.

Given that the number of cancer diagnoses seem to be increasing, I cannot imagine that there aren't people who could use what I have to offer. Even if I didn't do my "hypnosis thing," I am now a life coach who has had a "cancer experience," and I can bring that to the table of any support I may offer someone who is going through it. I can also bring my experience with interacting with others to the table if interacting with a caregiver. I may be able to share some insight into what a person might be feeling, or how one might interact with the person dealing with cancer.

As with anything, we are all individuals, and what I experienced may not exactly fit what another has - or will - experience. At the same time, much of life is relatable, especially when someone is willing to listen and communicate as effectively as possible.

Why am I telling you all of this? Because I would like to ask your help. Do you know of any individuals that might be able to utilize someone like me? Someone who might understand how it feels to be dealing with a cancer diagnosis, and who might be able to help guide them a step or two in the direction they are headed...Someone who could help them help themselves in mind and body and spirit (mostly the mind and spirit part, but I may have a few things I can suggest they investigate, body-wise).

In particular, I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, but I believe that what I have gone through is more than likely transferrable to the "experience" of any cancer.

If you know of any individuals or organizations or cancer treatment centers that I could speak with, would you please let me know? Or perhaps let them know about me?

While I would like to put my best foot forward "professionally" at this time, I am not all thought through, and am pretty much going to make this up as I go along. I know for some who might be reading this that might not work, and I understand that. But I am pretty sure there are others of you that might know exactly where I am, and know that I can help others, even if you don't have a clue how to help me, or know of anyone I can help - at least not yet.

I also am looking to find opportunities to speak with groups about ovarian cancer and my experience with it. I suspect it will be a smaller part of a bigger picture, but I certainly wouldn't be adverse to doing smaller talks if there is an interest. There needs to be a better awareness and education of what ovarian cancer looks like. Too many women haven't a clue. Since being diagnosed, not one woman I spoke to (with the possible exception of my RN sister) had a clue of what ovarian cancer is like, or what any of its symptoms are. 

As long as this type of cancer continues to exist, there needs to be a better understanding, as it is the type of cancer that can often be diagnosed when it is "too late." There are way too many stories on the internet that I have heard of similar experiences to mine - in terms of misdiagnosis of the symptoms, and arrogant, condescending doctors. It can be quite heartbreaking to know of them. I would love to make it so there are a few less to know and read.

I know this is long, and if you read all of it, THANK YOU. I am at a point that I am learning and discovering and growing, and it is those of you who are willing to allow me that that help me the most.

I know that I can do this. I can feel it. If you can feel it, too, maybe you will know of some way to help me find the direction I need to help others find the direction they need.

Thanks for listening.
with Love,

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