Melanie and I connected over my podcast DJ Breast Cancer. One morning, I awoke to a video message from half way around the world. Melanie went on to describe that she was a breast cancer survivor and she found my podcast DJ Breast Cancer as a source of information and community. It brought tears to my eyes to see and hear a video of such a young beautiful survivor, facing a scary diagnosis while working halfway across the world. It is also very amazing the impact as humans we can have on others and with technology, that impact has no geographical limits.
Melanie explains importance of yoga in the midst of a Breast Cancer Diagnosis. Melanie took her love of yoga and deep breathing to help her through difficult times with her cancer diagnosis. Afraid of needles, Melanie used her deep breathing exercises to help her relax and manage her way through the fear. I was so fortunate to meet Melanie in person while on a work trip in NYC. Melanie actually led me in yoga at 6am before my work day started. What an amazing instructor she is!!! We started with deep breathing exercises and ended with deep breathing, and I was so relaxed even with a crazy busy New York day full of appointments. She is an amazing instructor, she gave me gentle tips on how to maximize my stretch. I truly enjoyed every minute together!! Melanie also discusses her journey to Bali to explore yoga and eat the amazing food!
Melanie also discusses the benefits for a pap flap reconstruction option that many breast cancer survivors are not aware of. Pap flap uses tissue from the inner thigh to reconstruct breasts, an alternative to breast implants. As a thin woman, the diep flap (more widely common) was not an option for Melanie. Melanie did not have any other survivors to talk to about the procedure. She has since talked to another survivor about getting this procedure and they met up together. That’s one thing about the breast cancer community that I love, women helping women… whether it is leading others in yoga, starting a podcast, mentoring someone going through the journey, support groups, it holds a special place in my heart.
Melanie talks about her word for 2020: Thrive! She discussed how instead of resolutions, she prefers to live by words that inspire her. Gratitude was a previous word, but this year is all about thriving! Melanie doesn’t just want to live after cancer, she wants to thrive!