About This Trip

Martin and I in Yakima September 2013
Martin and I in Yakima September 2013

I, Iris, was diagnosed with Stage 3C breast cancer the first week of December 2013.  With the help and support of my family, friends, community and healthcare team I experienced what is known as a “cure.”  After my mastectomy pathology report came back with no residual cancer activity I was restaged in May 2014 as Stage 0.  This was pretty much a miracle. It is very uncommon to re-stage a cancer diagnosis designation. (Look here for my post about whether I really had cancer to begin with.)

To help me understand what is happening within my body, and to choose wisely as possible the best path to healing, I continue to look to myths and stories as well as science and medicine. Choosing to use art and dreams and the sweetness of plant medicine to light my journey as well.  Part of getting healthy is staying connected to my loved ones, recognizing that though this is happening in my body, the impact of this cancer-ing journey is bigger than me. This blog chronicles my journey of healing that continues.

May my healing bring healing to the world.


With Joe in the kitchen 2014
With Joe in the kitchen 2014


4 Comments Add yours

  1. Kathleen S. says:

    Love’s healing power is greater than we know. ks

  2. Laurie Strong says:

    Dear Iris: you don’t know me but we know someone in common. 4 years ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I am a 100 % got it taken care of poster-woman for survival. I have had various friends over the years who have been diagnosed, and, as a mental health professional have worked with many people with various illnesses, some mortal. I want you to know that the single most important thing you can do for yourself is to search out and acquire the very best top of the line most ‘with-it” (“it” being the leading edge in treatment) professionals in this field. I tell you this because I have, unfortunately, attended the funerals of several women who did not do this, and who, I feel strongly, would have survived had they pursued the best medical treatment available. In my work I have had occasion to teach innumerable people to meditate, to still their minds, to love themselves and others, etc. etc. etc. and feel that this ability can be an important adjunct to medical treatment: I have never thought of it as a replacement.

    The sad reality is that all providers (of medical services) are not created equal. And every patient has a personal responsibility to be a true ‘consumer’ in seeking and engaging in treatment. I know this as a long-standing health professional service provider, as well as a cancer survivor and an outspoken support for my closest friend who is in treatment for the second time in her life for breast cancer. Here in the Seattle area we are blessed with top of the line medical cancer treatment centers that are readily accessible with a bit of effort. I don’t know if that is possible where you are, but the search is important.

    The year before I was diagnosed, I happened to take on a part time interim job as a favor to a friend, doing outreach and providing social and intervention services for the customers of a known cancer treatment center. It was most informative, and has stood me (and my friend) in good stead in terms of accessing services.

    If I can be helpful to you in any way, please let me know. I have certainly been a supporter and involved in alternative and supportive treatments, and absolutely insist on love as my life-driver. But it was not love (of myself or others) that allowed me to survive breast cancer (although it certainly smoothed the edges), it was, rather, top of the line aggressive medical cancer treatment.

    My best wishes to you.

  3. shiborigirl says:

    well said, well done.

  4. Denise says:

    I just want you to know how much I have always loved you….let’s talk anti-trump gathering….

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