Yoga Class

Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Side Body Stretch and Twist - Extended - reclined

Arm extension stimulates healthy blood flow to chest
Increased circulation promotes healing and lessens fibrosis
Facilitates lymphatic drainage of breasts
Stretches biceps and pectoral muscles.
Improves range of motion
Stimulates blood flow to shoulder girdle
Breaks up muscle tension and stress

Shoulder injury or rotator cuff injury.

Database for Young Adult Survivors of Adolescent and Childhood Cancers?

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Investigators at the Institute of Child Health policy at the University of
Florida are designing a study to look at social networking among Young Adult
Survivors of Adolescent and Childhood Cancers. We would appreciate any
information on how to access a database that contains the contact information
for young adults aged 21 to 30 years who have ever been diagnosed with
cancer, and who have completed treatment within the past two or more years.

If you have any suggestions, please contact the project coordinator
Onyekachukwu Osakwe (e-mail:; phone: (352) 231-6945).

Thank you for your assistance.

Onyekachukwu Osakwe, MBBS MPH CPH
Institute for Child Health Policy
College of Medicine
University of Florida

3rd Annual Rural Tobacco Summit

Thursday, June 16, 2011

LAST CHANCE TO REGISTER FOR THE 3RD ANNUAL RURAL TOBACCO SUMMIT!  Please visit and select the Suwannee River region to register for free today to attend this educational training. You will not only receive valuable information on tobacco cessation, you will earn free CE/CME’s for your participation.  DON’T DELAY……..REGISTER TODAY!

Cancer Connections

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Please join us on Wednesday June 22 at NOON at Hope Lodge, for a presentation by Vonceil Levine of Haven Hospice: "Living to Love." Vonceil will discuss grief reactions when cancer patients experience loss: loss of health (including resulting loss of appetite), loss of lifestyle, routine, work.  She will discuss coping strategies for the patient, as well as for caregiving family members—to help them manage their own grief.  And she will explain how you can best care for yourself, as your own caregiver.  "Living to Love" will be informative and encouraging, whether you are your own caregiver, or caregiver for a loved one.

Please share this invitation with anyone who might be interested in attending. RSVP, if possible, no later than Monday June 20th, especially if you would like to be counted in for lunch  ($3 donation, please.)  You are also welcome to bring a healthful side dish to share, or to bring your own lunch. 

Cancer Connections welcomes healthcare professionals who treat or provide a service to cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers, as well as patients, survivors and caregivers.

For more information or to RSVP, please reply to   

Demonstration Project

The University of Florida (UF) and Florida Department of Health (DOH) have embarked on a ten (10) month demonstration project to evaluate the effectiveness of the services of Community Health Workers (CHWs) using quality of care indicators associated with the CHW profession. As part of the demonstration project, the DOH will support the salary of three CHWs for five of the ten months to document their effectiveness.We are willing to partner with three different health or service organizations in Florida.

The eligibility criteria for partnering organizations are: [1] Health or service organization in Florida; [2] Clear job description for hired CHW; [3] Commitment to employ the CHW for a minimum of five months after DOH Salary support; and [4] Commitment to complete an end of demonstration project efficacy survey. If you or your organization is interested in partnering on the CHW demonstration project, please complete attached form and e-mail or fax to Ms. Shannon Pressey ( / 727-394-6014).

For more information about the CHW demonstration project, please contact:

Shannon Pressey, MS
Research Programs Coordinator
Pharmaceutical Outcomes and Policy
College of Pharmacy
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32610
Office: 727-394-6162

Breast Cancer Yoga Props

Thursday, June 9, 2011

For Relaxation and Stress Reduction
A Breast Cancer Yoga practice commonly uses props in many innovative ways. The props allow for the main movements of the pose and the subtle adjustments of the body to assist in improving blood flow. The breath expands to open the chest, benefiting oxygen exchange and ridding the lungs of their residual stale air volume. The deepened breath physically brings increased circulation and lymphatic drainage; moreover it also has mental and emotional benefits such as decreasing anxiety, fear, and depression. The parasympathetic “rest and digest” functions are activated, down-regulating the habitual responses of the sympathetic nervous system which flood the body with stress hormones and create emotional states of panic and fear.

Do you have cancer-related actvities/research to share?

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Keep our members and community informed. Share your news about cancer-related studies, workshops, research and more right here on The Cancer Resource Blog.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

One of the examples used last night in the re-framing exercise was about a patient who struggled with "why me?" given their healthy lifestyle, lack of risk factors, etc. I was motivated, after the end of the discussion, to read about Jackie in Chapter 27, who had to work on forgiving herself. That is me! I think this review will assist me in finally letting go of guilt, anger and other emotions I've somehow held onto despite other work I've done to try to overcome it.

I am one of about 6% of breast cancer patients diagnosed as metastatic right from the beginning. I had eaten healthily, am not over-weight, had exercised regularly, had a wonderful supportive family, no family history, and not overly-stressed. I was in the final stages of taking the nursing refresher program to go back into my profession when I noticed a lump under my arm-pit, along with some red scratches on the skin there. My mind immediately jumped to inflammatory breast cancer! But for a few days I did nothing, hoping it would go away. My old family doctor had retired and I had a new one who had taken our family on as a favour to another friend of mine "because we were a healthy family" (as I was told). Doctors are hard to find here and can be choosy!
I did, however, end up getting it looked at by her. As I suspected she wanted to complete a round of antibiotics first....which did nothing for the lump but the scratch marks were gone. I was still nervous so my doctor agreed to do a mammogram and ultrasound, even though my prior mammogram within the year was fine. I heard nothing back but felt like the lump was growing. A month later I returned to her. She reminded me that lymph nodes can take a while to shrink back down after an infection and advised me to give it more time. She read the report to me: "there is no mammographic evidence of malignancy" and (ultrasound) "no suspicion of malignancy". She appealed to my nursing background to remember how it is with Mono. I felt chagrined but relieved. I did not ask for a copy of the report, which also happens to state: "negative breast imaging should not delay aspiration or biopsy of a clinically suspicious mass." My doctor believed the tools and, although I was still worried, I was happy to get back to my nursing studies with a clearer mind. I also decided to see a holistic practitioner who assured me my lymph system was acting normally following the stress of the recent death of my mother, and that seeing her could help this healing along.

A month later, I was starting to have pain down my left arm with moderate activity; it started to intensify over the next week. I called my doctor who agreed, finally, to arrange for a fine needly biopsy. I could see that the pathologist was holding back his judgement when I asked if all seemed well when he did the aspiration. Sure enough, I was called to my doctor's office for the results. She stood with her head down and said it was metastatic breast cancer and she had never seen a presentation like this before. I was linked up to our Tom Baker Cancer Centre where further tests and scans revealed a 7 cm mass encasing the left sub-clavian artery (and tumours elsewhere as well) and wide-spread, extensive bone involvement. The shock was immense for our family; it felt like the hole kept getting deeper and deeper that we needed to climb out of.

My husband is incredibly supportive and is a naturally mindful, joyful person who has been there for me every step of the way. I have a great circle of supportive friends as well. I belong to a metastatic breast cancer support group and attend sessions at our Wellspring. Despite all this, distressing thoughts have returned, triggered at different times, which cause me grief and guilt.
"Did I drink too much wine in my life?" "Did I stress too much through the Nursing Refresher program and my mother's death?" "Why didn't I ask for the reports and not worry about being a 'Nervous Nellie'? Why didn't I demand that biopsy earlier?" "Why didn't my Doctor act sooner, based on good clinical skills or even on my concerns?" I do realize that I was metastatic already but the delay made things seem worse, especially for my feeling so very helpless and worried for an extra 2 months.

So, I have been sitting here and really exploring these feelings over again, with the re-framing technique you recommended. The feelings are destructive, causing me sadness, guilt, frustration, and anger. I think I deal with them.....but then they come back!!! I am going to use the three columns from now on whenever such a thought re-surfaces. I'll do it very time. The compassionate parent would say: "your doctor is not perfect and has probably learned a lesson from this. You trusted in her judgement and also in the tools. Trust isn't a bad thing. It may have delayed treatment but you still responded very well to the chemotherapy which followed. You were able to manage to move up some of the tests that were ordered. Cancer is multi-factoral and you will never know why it occurred in you the way it did so dwelling on it only makes you feel bad." And finally: "After 3 1/2 years with this disease, and four chemotherapy lines I AM STILL HERE! And despite some physical disabilities now, I can still see, hear and smell the spring and rejoice in the love of family and friends."

Somehow, I feel like this is the answer for me. I deserve better than I've given myself and it's time for some loving kindness from myself to myself. Thank-you so much for an incredible series that I can apply to my life. And thank-you also for listening to my story. I am looking forward to continued growth and learning.


Dear Maureen

Thankyou for your kind note. By all means, you may put anything I said (or say) on the cancer blog and I have absolutely no objection to my name being shown. I am proud to have been a part of the Skills for Healing weekend and meeting Rob and Tim. I am now reading the "Healing Circle" book which they so kindly gave out to everyone and re-living the experience.

As I said to Rob on the weekend, it is a strange thing, but my life has been so much richer since I was diagnosed with a rare and incurable (for now) version of the bone marrow failure disease MDS, and I have learned so much at our local Wellspring, which hosted last weekend's Healing Circle. Knowing you are among people who know what you are going through has made such a difference and I have learned a great deal about meditation, mindfulness, and yoga too. I enjoy life so much more than I used to and greet each day cheerfully with a smile. The little things don't bother me any more.

Please thank Rob and Tim again for me, for the great work they are doing, and for coming all the way to Brampton to share their message. When I was at Wellspring today, the Healing Circle was the main topic of conversation and everyone said how great it was and how much it helped them.

Kind regards,


Yoga Breathing to Raise Energy Levels for Breast Cancer Patients

VISIT Breast Cancer Yoga
Today the typical way of raising our energy level is through caffeinated drinks and sugary foods. It has been proven that using these products to remedy our energy lows are an obvious health detriment. And, ultimately after the temporary high or boost is over we are left even more drained. Now let’s add on the fact that when you have an illness like breast cancer these ways of raising our energy is truly unproductive.

Let’s look at how we can get a natural boost of energy that supports health: one that instantly provides a renewed vitality and clarity of mind. It is as simple as learning to breath properly and consciously.

Our breath is our key to life. It is known that a person can live days without water, and longer without food. However, the moment we become oxygen deprived, our bodies immediately begin to die. Stating the obvious, breathing is by far the most immediate and important essential element to life.

“Take a deep breath” is a statement that is often heard when someone becomes upset or over excited. Heart palpitations, and high blood pressure are the symptoms of this agitation. Combating the treatments that come with strains, stresses and discomfort; one can learn how to breath to reduce theses problems and replace them with renewed energy. Now THIS would be productive. When we consciously approach this stress and strain with our breath it allows us to refocus and quiet down. All that is needed is the understanding and development of simple breathing techniques. Breathing techniques are highly sought after and recommended for just these reasons alone. The overall effect of many breathing practices help the body and mind create a calming down effect called a “relaxation response”. This again will allow for the mind to become clearer, and more reflective. When recovering from cancer breathing is instrumental to support our health and well-being. Breath in, breath out and rest is the goal.
By Diana Ross, E-RYT 500
June 5, 2011

The Pink Ladies, Breast Cancer Survivors & supporters

Diana Ross Welcomes You to Breast Cancer Yoga

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Welcome to Breast Cancer Yoga
Diana Ross
Founder of Breast Cancer Yoga

Breast Cancer Yoga Contributor Dawn Bradford

Breast Cancer Yoga Pose: "Half Happy Baby"

FREE Breast Cancer Yoga Videos
Breast Cancer Yoga YouTube Channel

Breast Cancer Yoga Contributor Dawn Bradford

Breast Cancer Yoga Pose "Easy Twist"

Breast Cancer Yoga Pose "Easy Twist"