Fall in love with yourself one SoulCollage® Card at a time!


A Cancer Journey
Expressed With SoulCollage®

In 2002 I went through a biopsy, two lumpectomies, a node dissection, twelve weeks of chemotherapy, and seven weeks of daily radiation treatments for breast cancer.  You can see the cards I made to honor that journey here.

I was happily cancer-free until July of 2011 when I was diagnosed with a very rare form of cancer, secondary angiosarcoma of the breast. This cancer formed as a direct result of the radiation treatments I experienced in 2002. It is only found in one out of about 1000 women who are treated for breast cancer.

The “treatment” for me this time involved a mastectomy and 11 rounds of chemotherapy (taxol and gemcitabine).

When I was diagnosed in July 2011, after much weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth (!), I turned to SoulCollage® to help me process what I was going through. Below are the cards that I created that supported me and are helping me to heal on this new cancer journey.

These cards are shown in the exact order that I created them.  I didn’t do the written work until 3-4 months afterwards. It’s all part of the process!

12 Cards- Prior to Mastectomy

Not again!

NOT AGAIN!

Who are you?

I am the one who is mad as hell that this is happening to me again. I am the one who can’t believe I’ve been diagnosed with cancer again. I am the one who has been thrust into the deep hellish feelings of fear and anger.

I am the one who feels betrayed by my body and my medical team from 2002. I am the one who is PISSED off that my treatment for breast cancer caused me to get cancer again.

I am the one who shouts WHY ME to an unhearing universe.

 

What do you have to give me?

I give you strong, powerful feelings of anger that are a catalyst for change. I give you the strength and the stamina to feel these feelings. I give you a means to express these feelings.  I give you a new path to follow. I give you the knowing that you can survive even this.

 

What do you want from me?

I want you to feel whatever you are feeling, whenever you are feeling it. I want you to remember that these feelings will not destroy you, they are just a part of life. I want you to give yourself room to have all this anger, all this fear, all these questions, without hurting yourself over it.

Interruption

INTERRUPTION

Who are you?

I am the one who is NOT HAPPY about this new twist of the road. I am the one who wants my journey to be what it was before. I am the one who didn’t sign up for this new roller coaster ride.

I am the one who is dazed and confused by what is happening to me. I am the one who doesn’t know how to travel this new road.

I am the one who sees a chasm ahead of me and I don’t see any way across.

 

 

What do you have to give me?

I give you a new path to follow. I give you destruction and chaos which clears the way for new things and experiences.  I give you confusion and despair which often paves the way to clarity and light.

 

What do you want from me?

I want you to embrace the confusion and the despair. I want you to face it and not run away from it. I need you to give yourself space for all these wild feelings of being out of control and unsure.  I need you to honor me and my feelings no matter what.

Stark Raving Fear

STARK RAVING FEAR

Who are you?

I am the one who is afraid that I am going to die. I am the one who fears a slow lingering death. I am the one who doesn’t want to die this young.

I am the one who prostrates myself in the shadowy light of my room and begs not to die now.  I am the one who feels the cold chill of death knocking on my body’s door and I am the one who is saying NO to it right now.

I am the one who is afraid the cancer is already spread to other parts of my body. I am the one who is afraid that cancer cells are overtaking my body and squeezing the life out of me.  I am the one who is afraid of cancer. I am the one who is afraid of what is going to happen to me.

 

What do you have to give me?

I am fear and I give you a catalyst for new power, new growth, new directions. 

 

What do you want from me?

I want you to take note of what it is you are so afraid of. I want you to write about your fears and talk about your fears. The only frightening thing about feeling fear is keeping it inside of you and not expressing it in some way.

I want you to remember that the only antidote to fear is love, and being in the present moment.

I want you to use me as a catalyst towards new directions, growth, and positive change.

 

Standing Up to Cancer

STANDING UP TO CANCER

Who are you?

I am the one who stands up and talks back to cancer. I am the one who says “Nah nah a nah nah… you can’t get me!”  I am the one who is bold and proud and fierce. I am the one who says “Take that!” as I kick poor cancer in the shins.

I am the one who is strong and fierce and determined. I am the one who is shadowed by an angel’s wing.

I am the one who ISN’T going to stand by and let cancer take my life.  I am the one who is standing up to this deadly disease. I am the one who is going to do what I can to cleanse my body, mind and spirit of this deadly disease. I am the one who isn’t going to take any CRAP from cancer this time around.

 

 

What do you have to give me?

I give you power and determination and strength.
I give you the irrefutable fact that you have a CHOICE here.

 

What do you want from me?

I want you to remember always that you have a choice. You can lie down and take it or you can stand up and say NO THANK YOU, NO, GO AWAY, NO- I AM NOT GIVING IN TO YOU TODAY.

 

Celebrating Breasts

 CELEBRATING MY BREASTS

 

Who are you?

I am the one who has always loved my breasts, no matter what size they were. I am the one who lies down and touches my left breast for the last time tonight.

I am the one who feels the sacredness of my body through the dove and the snake.

 

What do you have to give me?

I give you an appreciation of your beautiful body. I give you the knowing that your body will be beautiful and strong even without your left breast. I give you a reminder of your sensuality and your beauty.

 

 

Of My Breast an Offering

OF MY BREASTS AN OFFERING

Who are you?

I am the one who is making an offering of my left breast. I am the one who gives it up freely and lovingly and with right mind and good consciousness.

I am the one who offers my dis-eased left breast in exchange for golden, green and glorious LIFE.

My gift to you is life itself. I want you to know that this is an offering of the highest kind. I want you to remember that you are strong enough to make this offering, even though you never thought you could.

 

Healing Light

RESTING IN THE HEALING LIGHT

Who are you?

I am the one who is choosing to rest in the healing arms of my angels.  I am the one who is surrounded by wings and love and deep comfort as I walk into the surgical suite and lie down on the cot.

I am the one who rests in safety during my surgery and afterwards, knowing that the pure clean light of Spirit is lighting the surgeon’s way to clean margins and my own way towards healing.

I am the one who allows myself comfort and rest in the weeks following the surgery.

 

What do you have to give me?

I give you rest and safety and protection. I give you the knowing that it is all right to close your eyes and let go into sleep.

What do you need from me?

I need you to remember that you are always, continually and ever more being held in the arms of an angel, no matter what you are doing or what you are thinking. The angels are wrapping their love and care around your body, your mind and your spirit.

 

Beauty in Rocky Places

BEAUTY IN ROCKY PLACES

Who are you?

I am the one who is a bright spark of beauty and color in a gray and desolate place.  I am the one who grew here in spite of the impossibility of growth in such a place. I am the one who is strong and vibrant and who holds my own place in the world, no matter what is surrounding me.

 

What do you have to give me?

I give you beauty.  I give you vitality.  I give you growth in rocky, dry places.

 

What do you want from me?

I want you to remember that growth is possible no matter where you are or what surrounds you.

 

 

Opening to Healing

OPENING TO HEALING

Who are you?

We are the ones who are floating in the muted seas of healing. We are the ones who each have a light to guide us.

We are the ones who are not struggling or pushing, but who are relaxing and letting go and just following the feeling, following the light.

 

 

What do you have to give me?

We give you lightness of being. We give you the ability to trust, to float freely towards your own healing.  We give you quiet joy as you explore and follow the light that is given to you in the murky darkness of your unknowing.

What do you want from me?

We want you to relax, to let go, to trust that healing is coming to you, that you are moving towards it with every breath you take. We want you to remember that this journey is not a struggle, it is a joyous adventure of trust and faith and light.

 

Celebrating Life

CELEBRATING LIFE

Who are you?

I am the one who is intent on celebrating LIFE in spite of the deadly cancer cells that were inside my beautiful body.  I am the one who dances in lightly and freely and blesses you with vibrant color and life.  I am the one who clears away the black flowers and makes room for the bright pink ones instead.

I am the one who says, “Behold, I bring you good tidings of aliveness and well-being.”

 

What do you have to give me?

I give you hope and a smile and a new way of looking at things. I give you the surety that out of darkness always comes light, out of death always comes new growth.

 

What do you want from me?

I want you to call on my energy when you are needing some hope, some greening growth in your life. I want you to continue to put water in the vase so that the bright flower can continue to live.

 

My Thoughts Create My Reality

MY THOUGHTS CREATE MY REALITY

Who are you?

I am the one who walks through the corridors of my mind and sweeps away every negative thought, leaving only clean open spaces for the breath of God to flow through.

I am the one who knows that my thoughts are powerful. I am the one who calmly walks in the reaches of my mind to determine new thoughts that open me up to light and healing.

 

What do you have to give me?

I give you a reminder that you have a choice about what you think.  You don’t have a choice about what happens to you but you do have control over your thoughts.  I give you clarity of mind to choose the thoughts that bring you healing and joy and abundance.

 

What do you want from me?

I want you to choose healing thoughts on a regular basis. I want you to CHOOSE affirmative thoughts and affirmations to guide you through this healing process.

 

Peace and Mindfulness

GODDESS OF PEACE & MINDFULNESS

Who are you?

I am the one who brings you peace and a quiet smile through the power of mindfulness. I am the one who encourages you to rest in the circle of this present moment only.

I am the one who lives a simple life of earth and breath and nature. I am the one who reminds you to do the same.

 

What do you have to give me?

I give you the gift of mindfulness as a practice. I give you the joy of breathing slowly and returning to your body as you return to each moment, one at a time.

I give you the gift of slow time.

 

 

What do you want from me?

I want you to listen to me, to heed my energy, to acknowledge my gifts.
I want you to open your arms, your mind, your heart, to RECEIVE my gifts.
I want you to know that all is well.

5 Cards- Prior to First Chemo

Lovingly Held by Community

 LOVINGLY HELD BY COMMUNITY

Who are you?

I am the one who is held by a powerful inner and outer community of love and blessing and support.  I am the one who is being prayed for and held in loving energy.  I am the one who is healed and whole and healthy.


What do you give me?

I give you the message that you can relax and allow the healing to fill you and grace you.  I give you community.

What do you need from me?

I need you to be aware of this powerful community which supports you and is flowing energy to you.  I need you to OPEN to this community, to this love, to this healing.

 

Resting in the Present

RESTING IN THE PRESENT

Who are you?

I am the one who contains singing birds in all directions. I am the one who rests against a backdrop of light.  I am the one who is grounded by the open pink lotus blossoms.  I am the one who is smiling a smile of peace and contentment. I am the one who reminds you to be where you are.

What do you give me?

My gift to you is presence and mindfulness and inner content, no matter what is happening to you. 

What do you want from me?

I want you to always remember that the birds of your heart are always with you, protecting you, singing to you, filling your body with healing and sweet joy that only the winged once can give.  I want you to rest and sit still and stay in the present.

 

Who are you?

I am the one who contains singing birds in all directions. I am the one who rests against a backdrop of light. I am the one who is grounded by the open pink lotus blossoms. I am the one who is smiling a smile of peace and contentment. I am the one who reminds you to be where you are.

What do you give me?

My gift to you is presence and mindfulness and inner content, no matter what is happening to you.

What do you want from me?

 

 

Waiting

WAITING

Who are you?

I am the one who is perched on the post. I am the one who is waiting.  I am the one who is awake and looking back AND I am the one who is asleep and not looking ahead. 

I am the one who did not ask to be up on this ledge. I am the one who knows the only way off of this ledge is to wait for the clouds to abate and the way to be made clear.

 

What do you give me?

I give you time to rest, time to wait, time to think, time to dream.  I give you the knowing that you are not just of one mind on this new journey. I give you permission to rest and to wait. I give you patience to be with the not knowing.

What do you need from me?

I need you to activate your patience now. I need you to relax and to embrace both of these energies that are present within you. I need you to remember that all is well.

 

Possibility Awaits

POSSIBILITY AWAITS

Who are you?

I am the one who is dancing towards my future.  I am the one who is moving ahead with joy and vision.   I am the one who knows wher I’m going and is moving towards the light.

What do you give me?

I give you a sense of possibility even though now you can’t conceive of what that might be.  I give you freedom in the imagining of this possibility.   I give you a knowing that there is much much more to come!

What do you want from me?

I want you to remember that there is life after treatment!  I want you to remember that dancing and moving forward is definitely in your future.  I want you to know that everything is possible for you.

 

My Inner Healing Cave

 

INNER HEALING CAVE

Who are you?

I am the one who is a safe place for you to rest.  I am the one who invites you in.  I am the one who is spare yet filled with light. I am the one who only contains exactly what you need for your journey.  I am the one place where you can rest and be at complete ease.  I am the place where you can meet with your inner healers.

What are your gifts?

I give you a place of rest and renewal.  I give you an inner world of peace and comfort and safety.

What do you want from me?

I want you to come and visit me often.

 

sos logo 3 wordsPlease visit my website devoted to women who are walking any kind of cancer journey, SOS-Cancer-Journeys (connecting women with cancer to Self, Others, and Spirit).

 

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img036.jpgI am the one who, in the bleakest nights, with cancer raging in me, red, and disguised as a rose, saw the dawn break, saw the moon rise, saw the feathered friend dance, and had hope.






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