I was 4 days away from completing a 60 day challenge at my Bikram Yoga studio in Laguna Hills when I was diagnosed with breast cancer. The treatment protocol was amazing. Weird to say but I believe with all my heart that years of Bikram yoga practice prepared my body to withstand the toxic chemicals. I was not at all sick or nauseous, but was very careful to rest and remain in a stress-free environment. The good news is that two and a half years later, after a year of chemotherapy and four surgeries I was declared cancer free. Six months later, I underwent another surgery completely unrelated to the cancer. I did practice a few times in between surgeries though not enough to really make a difference. While the physical and emotional challenges battling the cancer were severe, the after effects were far more difficult. The interruption produced severe financial consequences.
I have 3 amazing children. Kyle, 25 is an architect in Los Angeles, Chloe, 24, just graduated from FIDM, is also in LA working within the fashion industry. Olivia 18, just graduated from high school and is registered at community college with a goal to obtain a degree from either UCLA or USC. Their love and support along with countless others during this time is something I deeply treasure and those experiences are “the good” that came out of a tragic circumstance.
Exactly a year ago, after my last surgery, my parents picked me up and took me to their home where they had prepared a room for me. No longer able sustain my own home and take care of my daughters I felt I hit rock bottom. No job, no home, no kids and 30 lbs. heavier; weighing more than my weight at nine months pregnant. After 6 weeks of recuperation time, I decided to re-start my life. While working part time for a retail establishment in Old Town Temecula, I joined the Bikram Yoga Temecula studio and made a personal goal of completing a 30 day challenge immediately from the start. That was the kick-start to the healing in my head.
I started up my jewelry business again and so thrilled to be in a creative capacity once again. The journey with God over the past 18 months has made my spiritual walk deep and strong. I’m half way to my weight loss goal but more importantly, my body is re-generating from the inside out. In all areas of my life, I’m not where I want to be yet, but happy to say, I’m not where I used to be! Bikram Yoga has been a huge contributor!
My favorite posture is Triangle, my most challenging and least favorite is Awkward pose. Curious to see what these postures will be a year from now!