I have recently been teaching a chair yoga class at a cancer center. I was wondering why I felt so at peace afterwards. You would think that I would be sad for these patients, their struggles, their fears, and their hopes.
Today I had someone new, she was having Chemo tomorrow, and clearly she was well into her treatment as she had a scarf wrapped around her head. She had never been to my class. Never done yoga. She took to it, the breathing, the positive visualization. I could see she was desperate for hope.
After the class she said, could I come Wednesday with my “Chemo”, as if it was her new friend. We discussed what that meant, her port would be accessed and she would have a bag (of poison) to deal with. I said of course, we would make sure to adapt anything you need. It seemed reassuring to her. My mantra, if you can breath you can do yoga.
When I left I felt energized and hopeful. Why? After I came home I realized this was coming home to me, I spent years in the hospital, off and on, with Natalie. They are like a safe place to me sometimes. How many days and nights did I spend, trying to find the best cafeteria food, and most comfortable niche to hang out in. Natalie didn’t die of cancer but that really doesn’t matter. they are not only a place of death, but a place of healing and hope. I am bringing hope.
I teach in the infusion room, the place where the poison happens, but we turn it into a place of hope and love, community and love.
Bring on the Chemo.