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Easing the Effects of Colon Cancer Through Yoga, With Jean DiCarlo-Wagner

unnamedJean DiCarlo-Wagner faced Stage IIIC colon cancer in 2003, with her doctors giving her a 50/50 chance for five-year survival. Fortunately, her surgery and chemotherapy were successful, but her journey from diagnosis to recovery was challenging. After a 20-year career as an education resource specialist, her diagnosis and poor prognosis forced her to retire. However, she found a new career in teaching yoga for cancer survivors. Jean and her husband, Chris, have one grown daughter and are active Airbnb.com hosts. They keep busy with an art studio built on their property and rescuing golden retrievers.

Jean DiCarlo Wagner demonstrates her gentle yoga while lying in bed:

Yoga3Yoga2Yoga1

Visit Jean’s Website, Yoga Being.net

 

Watch Jean demonstrate gentle yoga:

Riding His Motorcycle To Raise Awareness About FAP and Colon Cancer, With Todd Spurrier

Todd SpurrierTodd Spurrier has spent 19 months riding his Ducati motorcycle over 57, 000 miles all over America to raise awareness for FAP (Familial Adenomatous Polyposis) and Colorectal Cancer.

As he states on his website, Destinationxride.org:

The mission of DESTINATION X RIDE (DXR) is to save lives by unleashing awareness on the masses about three related conditions impacting thousands of people, including me and my family: colorectal cancer, familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) and desmoid tumors by broadcasting the message as widely and as loudly as possible that early screenings can prevent much more serious stages of these diseases.

Here are some of the organizations that have been important to Todd and his mission:

The Colon Cancer Alliance

Ducati

Chris4Life

Reel Recovery

 

Pregnant and on Chemotherapy, With Betsy Henson

Betsy Henson and her baby, Ellie

Pregnant and on chemotherapy, with Betsy Henson

Can you imagine being 20 weeks pregnant and being told you must start chemotherapy immediately? This happened to Betsy Henson. Betsy began feeling extremely weak. After several visits to the emergency room, for what she thought were severe hemorrhoids, her doctor ordered a colonoscopy.

Her worst fears were realized when it was discovered she had colon cancer that had metastasized  to her liver. Her team of doctors at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) got right to work putting together a treatment plan to treat Betsy’s cancer as well as safeguard her baby.

Click here to see Betsy share her story, and meet her daughter, Ellie.

 

 

The Cancer Olympics, With Dr. Robin McGee

Robin McGee

The Cancer Olympics – Dr. Robin McGee

Robin McGee was diagnosed with stage 3C rectal cancer after years of bungled and inadequate medical attention. Later on, she discovered that the best-practice chemotherapy was not available in Nova Scotia, Canada, where she lives.  After her very delayed diagnosis, she reached out to her community using a blog entitled “Robin‘s Cancer Olympics.”  The uplifting and humorous posts and responses followed her through the harsh landscape of cancer treatment and provincial politics.  She and her community were ultimately successful in lobbying the government for the chemotherapy to be approved, but too late for her to receive it.  She also sought medical justice, and the doctors who disregarded her were investigated and disciplined by their College. Since entering remission, she has been extremely active in patient advocacy, serving as a patient representative on several provincial, national, and international initiatives aimed at improving cancer care. Her book, The Cancer Olympics
relates her story.  It is an International Book Award 2015 Finalist, and has received 5-star reviews from Kirkus IndieReader and Reader’s Favorite.  In 2015, the Canadian Cancer Society awarded Robin their highest honor, the National Medal of Courage.

Purchase The Cancer Olympics:

You’re Never Too Young for Colorectal Cancer, with Kimberly Bishop

Kimberly Bishop

You’re Never Too Young for Colorectal Cancer, With Kimberly Bishop

For several years, Kimberly Bishop was told by her doctor, despite obvious symptoms,  that she was too young to have colorectal cancer. As her symptoms worsened, her doctor finally sent her for a colonoscopy where a 13cm cancerous polyp was discovered at the recto-sigmoid junction. Kimberly was just 34 when she was diagnosed with rectal cancer. After surgery and six months of FOLFOX chemotherapy, Kimberly remains NED, 8 years after her initial diagnosis.

What I Learned From Kimberly Bishop

  • Don’t ignore the symptoms of colorectal cancer.

    • You know what is, and is not normal for your body. Talk to your doctor. If you have persistent symptoms, insist on a colonoscopy.

  • Support can come from many places.

    • If a spouse or partner is unable to provide the support you need, turn to friends or other family members.

 

 

Choosing to Lead a Positive Life With AFAP, With Daniel Shockley

Daniel Shockley

Choosing a Positive Life With AFAP, With Daniel Shockley

Daniel Shockley is a veteran of the U.S. Navy. At the age of 50 he was diagnosed with AFAP, Attenuated Familial Adenomatous Polyposis. AFAP is a subtype of a condition known as Familial Adenomatous Polyposis (FAP), which causes an increased number of colon polyps, and therefore, an increased risk of colon cancer in the people who have it.

Though faced with life saving and life-altering surgery, Daniel has chosen to live a positive life.

My mindset from the onset can best be described as: I tend not to think about things I am unable to control; medical issues I am unable to control. What I can control is my positive attitude – Daniel Shockley

What I Learned From Daniel Shockley

  •  Understand as much as you can about your condition

    • Understanding your condition will help you adapt and will allow you to press on with your life.

  • Worrying doesn’t help.

    • In Daniel’s words “worrying didn’t cause my condition;  therefore,worrying will not make it go away.”

Daniel has made advocacy his life’s work. Here are the organizations that Daniel is working with:

The Colon Cancer Alliance

Fight Colorectal Cancer

Hereditary Colon Cancer Foundation

National Organization of Rare Disorders

Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurse Society

United Ostomy Associations of America, Inc.

Chris4Life

Michael’s Mission

Chris4LIfe Founder and President, Michael Sapienza

, Christine

The inspiration for Chris4Life, Christine Sapienza

Michael Sapienza founded Chris4Life in honor of his mother, Christine Sapienza, who lost her battle with colon cancer in 2009.

The mission of Chris4Life is:

To find a cure for colon cancer by funding and facilitating cutting edge research programs across the nation. To improve the lives of patients diagnosed with colon cancer by funding and developing programs to support patients and their caregivers. To increase awareness of the life-saving importance of early screening for colon cancer by using innovative strategies.

What I Learned from Michael Sapienza

  • One person can make an impact.

    • Chris4Life has grown and now sponsors major events across the country to raise money to support colon cancer research.

  • Within a few years, we will see colon cancer receive the national spotlight like other forms of cancer currently have.

Important Links Mentioned on the Show:

Colon Cancer Alliance Webinar: Dehydration: Causes, Impact On Your Treatment and What You Can Do – May, 20, 2015 7PM EST

 

UndyChicago Undy

 

 

 

 

Never too Young

The Chrs4Life Fabulous Event

 

From Homelessness to Colon Cancer Advocate, With Candace Henley

Candace Henley

From Homelessness to Colon Cancer Advocate, With Candace Henley

Candace Henley says she was “Superwoman” prior to her colon cancer diagnosis. The mother of five children, she worked out at the gym, drove a bus for the Chicago Transit Authority and was involved in her church.

When she was diagnosed with stage IIB colon cancer the effects were devastating; not just physically, but also emotionally and financially. Her husband left her, she lost her job, her car and her home. Inspired by the care and support of many, particularly her children, she fought her way back.

In an effort to raise awareness about colon cancer in the African-American community, Candace created Blue Hat BowTie Sunday. In March of 2015, she was  recognized by the Zeta Phi Beta sorority as their Woman of the Year. Candace was also one of four women whose story was profiled in Women’sHealth Magazine.

What Candace Henley Learned From Surviving Colon Cancer

  • I learned there is no room for self-pity- (“Why should I fight it, I’m going to die anyway”). Who really knows when they are going to die? Those that love you want you to fight and if they could they would fight for you but, truth is “Your survivorship should not be more important to everyone but you!”

  • I learned that you will lose friends as result of fear and ignorance about what cancer is and no matter how many times you tell them they can’t get it if they touch you.

  • I learned that I am happier than I was before cancer. When you survive cancer, you see life in HD. Things seem brighter, smell better and feel better. The things you use to take advantage of somehow become more exciting and make you want to slow down and savor moments as long as you can.

  • I learned that laughter is healing and good medicine. I remember reading that laughter had healing properties and I was desperate to feel something other than pain and anger so, I started watching America’s funniest home videos and spending more time with family and friends.

  • I learned that LIVESTRONG is not as easy as it sounds.

  • I learned that I would have missed being a grandmother.

  • I learned I would become an advocate for others like me.

  • I learned that I would encourage others not only about making it day by day but, making it through life.

  • I learned that you will not be the person you use to be and you have to find your “New Normal”.

  • I learned that God does answer prayers.

  • I learned that cancer is not a punishment from God.

  • I learned to forgive myself for being angry and forgive others who hurt or left me when I needed them most.

  • I learned that cancer is an exclusive club that does not discriminate. People you might not otherwise meet from all walks of life become lifelong friends as a result of a cancer diagnosis.

  • I learned my purpose in life.

  • I learned to live my best life now

 

Lynch Syndrome, and Genetic Testing and Counseling, With Georgia Hurst and Ellen Matloff

Georgia Hurst1

I Have Lynch Syndrome, Inc founder, Georgia Hurst

Georgia Hurst is the founder of I Have Lynch Syndrome, Inc. As stated on her website

The mission of I Have Lynch Syndrome, Inc., is to save lives through education and awareness raising about Lynch among the global medical community and the general public.

Ellen Matloff is the President and CEO of My Gene Counsel.   “My Gene Counsel will translate the jargon behind the latest breakthrough on the evening news and tell you what it really means for you and your family.”

During this podcast, Georgia and Ellen discuss the impact that Lynch syndrome can have on those affected by it and the importance of knowing your family medical history. The also educate us on the world of genetic testing and counseling.

What I Learned From Georgia Hurst and Ellen Matloff

  • Know your family medical history!

    • Speak with the older members of your family and create a family tree that lists as many family members as possible. List their age, any serious medical condition, and their age when they passed away, if applicable. Keep this document with other important documents.

  • If you have a tumor surgically removed, ask your doctor to order M.S.I. (Micro Satellite Instability) or immunohistochemistry testing on the tumor to determine if there are any genetic mutations.

  • Though not right for all cases, genetic testing should always be discussed with your oncologist. If you need assistance, or more information, visit the National Society of Genetic Counselors website, or contact My Gene Counsel.

Important Links:

IHaveLynchSyndrome.com:

IHLS

Find Georgia Hurst on Twitter: @SheWithLynch

My Gene Counsel

Find Ellen Hurst on Twitter: @MyGeneCounsel

Conquering the Psychological Effects of Colon Cancer, with Ed Yakacki III

Ed Yakacki III

Conquering the Psychological Effects of Colon Cancer, With Ed Yakacki III

Ed Yakacki III was diagnosed with colon cancer at the young age of 30. Ed faced two battles; conquering the physical effects of colon cancer, and conquering the psychological effects of colon cancer after treatment. Trying to go back to a “normal” life after treatment is a serious issue for many cancer survivors. Like many survivors, Ed struggled to find meaning to his life after completing his colon cancer treatment. Ed battled several issues including depression. Participating in the Philadelphia Undy 5K run was the impetus for his transition from survivor to “thrivor.”

What I Learned from Ed Yakacki III

  • It will take time to find your “new” normal after your colon cancer treatment is over.

    • Be gentle with yourself. You’ve been through a traumatic experience. The things that were important to you before treatment may no longer matter to you now. Your values will likely change as a result of your experience.

  • When you struggle to pick yourself up, let others lift you up.

    • Ed credits the wonderful people he met at the Philadelphia Undy, with helping him to find meaning in his post-treatment life.

  • One person can make their voice heard.

Check out Ed’s Facebook page, Fightin4Blue

Visit Ed’s Fightin4Blue website

Check out Ed’s TV appearance:

 

 

 

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