Winter 2013

Winter 2013

 

Yesterday is but a dream, and
tomorrow is only a vision.
But a today well-lived
makes every yesterday
a dream of happiness
and every tomorrow a vision of hope.
– Anonymous

 

Welcome to the Winter 2013 issue of Life to the Fullest, the newsletter the Swedish Cancer Institute dedicates to cancer survivors. The anonymous quote above is a fitting introduction to an article about a remarkable young woman, Rose Egge. Rose is a cancer survivor who turned her experience into a hope-filled vision. She is living her todays very well and is helping other young cancer survivors find hope through a new organization – Thrive Through Cancer. The quote also clearly describes a group of women cancer survivors – Team Survivor Northwest – who have teamed up with the Swedish Cancer Institute to offer a new class for patients and survivors. Their story, along with a description of the Active Women, Healthy Women class, is also included in this issue. The stories of Rose and Team Survivor Northwest epitomize the power of hope in overcoming adversity.

We hope you find this newsletter helpful. We encourage you to print a copy or forward this message to your family and friends who also might find it interesting and informative.

In the midst of winter,
I found there was
within me
an invincible summer.
– Albert Careb

 


Table of  Contents

Download the .pdf version of Life to the Fullest 2013


Thrive Through Cancer:

A personal goal is transformed into a new support resource for young adults with cancer

 

  
  On the first day of treatment, Rose Egge faced her future with a smile.

Rose is a beautiful young woman who loves dance, yoga and her job as a multimedia health writer for KOMOnews.com. Two years ago – at the age of 25 – Rose received the shock of her life. After several months, multiple visits to her doctor and an MRI to figure out why she had intermittent back pain, she received the news no one is ever ready to hear. She had cancer – specifically she had a form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma called acute lymphoblastic lymphoma.

“I had a great job, and a wonderfully supportive family and boyfriend – who is now my fiancé,” says Rose. “But I felt alone with my disease and wanted to connect with others in the same situation. As I progressed through chemotherapy, however, I discovered that support resources geared to my age group were very limited.”

 
 
As she approached the end of chemotherapy, Rose started thinking about how she could help others like her.  

As she began losing her hair, Rose visited a cancer resource store. Her visit reinforced her dilemma. All she could find were hats she considered better suited to her grandmother than her. Rose’s style hadn’t changed – she just had cancer. She still wanted to look and feel as much like the young woman she was – and she wanted to thrive despite her cancer.

That’s when Rose started thinking about other young people in the 18-to-39 age group who were living with cancer and probably experiencing the same thing. Rose first spoke with Christine Smith, founder of Northwest Hope and Healing, a non-profit organization that supports cancer patients at the Swedish Cancer Institute, and with the Swedish Foundation. As she neared the end of her treatment, her plan began to take shape. Rose was determined to create a new organization that would focus on young adults, like herself, who needed a support system as they traveled their own personal journeys from diagnosis to treatment to survivorship.

“I discovered that helping others was healing for me,” says Rose. “I think that’s true for a lot of cancer patients and survivors, as well as for their parents and friends. For a lot of people who are constantly dealing with their own issues, it is a nice respite to think outside themselves.”

  
Rose’s dream of an organization to help young adults through their cancer journeys is now a reality thanks to many volunteers and the generosity of individuals, companies and organizations.  

Rose has been cancer free for one year now and her new organization – Thrive Through Cancer – recently celebrated its first birthday, too. In its first year, while still navigating the red tape of becoming a non-profit organization, it raised funds through movie nights, a wine tasting event and social media. Funds are actually donated to the Swedish Foundation and earmarked for Thrive Through Cancer, which has not yet received its non-profit status, as a way to provide a tax deduction for the generous individuals this fledgling organization depends on.

  
   Hope Totes ready for distribution to young-adult cancer patients at the Swedish Cancer Institute.

Rose and her group of volunteers have used the donations to make and deliver “Hope Totes” gift bags to more than 100 young adult cancer patients at the Swedish Cancer Institute. The Hope Totes contain age-appropriate items that have been purchased with donated funds or donated by generous companies, like Aveda and Trader Joes. The ultimate goal for this second year is to raise enough money to fund the totes and provide cancer patients some non-medical financial aid for such things as child care and transportation.

For more information about Thrive Through Cancer and its coming events, or to connect with other cancer patients, volunteer or make a donation, go to www.ThriveThroughCancer.org or send an email to ThrivingWithCancer@gmail.com.


Team Survivor Northwest: You Can Do It Too!

By Trinette Baer-Kowalski, Development Director, Team Survivor Northwest

In 1995, a group of women cancer survivors in Seattle decided to train for a triathlon. The group asked Dr. Julie Gralow, a local medical oncologist, to serve as their team physician. During the training process, Dr. Gralow was inspired by the tenacity and strength of these women and amazed at the physical and psychological benefits the women gained through training.

Dr. Gralow continued to meet women cancer survivors who wanted to exercise and improve their overall fitness, but needed additional support if she was going to attempt to meet this need. She partnered with Lisa Talbott, a fitness and therapeutic exercise specialist, to found Team Survivor Northwest (TSNW) – an organization dedicated to teaching women cancer survivors how to use exercise for physical and emotional recovery. Today, TSNW is a national organization with affiliates around the country, offering year-round fitness opportunities for women cancer survivors.

Thousands of women have participated in TSNW fitness and health education programs. Team Survivor Northwest programs are open to any woman who has a past or present diagnosis of cancer. Members range in age from 20 to 80 years old. Participants are as varied as the activities they enjoy, but they all are bound by the common desire to take an active role in their physical and emotional well-being.

Medical research shows that post-diagnosis fitness is vital to survivorship. Exercise has been shown to improve sleep, appetite and mood of cancer patients, to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy, and to significantly reduce the risk of cancer reoccurrence in women.

  • According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, physical activity after a breast cancer diagnosis may reduce the risk of death from the disease
  • Another study, conducted by the American Association for Cancer Research, confirms that regular exercise increases the survival rate of cancer survivors
  • In a report published in 2006, researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center found that exercise decreases pain, helps cancer survivors feel healthier and increases participation in daily activities
  • In a study published in the Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, researchers similarly found that exercise led to decreased fatigue, pain, neuropathy, thrombosis and emotional stress, and improved quality of life, sleep patterns and cognition for cancer survivors

We are happy to announce that Team Survivor Northwest and the Swedish Cancer Institute are teaming up to offer the class, Active Women, Healthy Women. Women cancer patients and survivors of all fitness levels are encouraged to join this certified-instructor-led class. Regardless of where you are in your journey from cancer patient to survivor, there is an exercise activity appropriate for you. Instructors will assist you in assessing your health and fitness levels to help you reap the benefits of exercise. The focus of Active Women, Healthy Women is on stretching, strength training and cardio workouts. Enjoy the camaraderie of other women in this safe and supportive environment. To register, please call 206-386-2502 or visit www.swedish.org/classes. For more information on Team Survivor Northwest, please call 206-732-8350.

Active Women, Healthy Women Class Schedule

Swedish Issaquah

Dates: Wednesday, April 3 through May 8 (six consecutive weeks)
Time: 6-7 p.m.
Location: Swedish Issaquah, Room “Leadership,” 2nd floor of the Conference Center

Swedish First Hill

Dates: Thursday, April 18 through May 23 (six consecutive weeks)
Time: 10-11 a.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill, A-Floor West, Donald A. Tesh, M.D., Conference Rooms A and B


Cancer Support Groups

The Swedish Cancer Institute offers a variety of support groups. The groups provide an opportunity to meet with others having experiences similar to your own. All groups are led by experienced support group facilitators from the Swedish Cancer Institute and are open to everyone in the community. Please call 206-540-0477 for more information.

Living with Cancer Support Group

For individuals living with any type of cancer
Meets weekly on Thursdays, 1:30-3 p.m., Swedish First Hill

Caregivers Support Group

A drop-in group for caregivers
Meets weekly on Thursdays, 1:30-3 p.m., Swedish First Hill

Gynecological Cancers Support Group

For women with gynecological cancers
Meets weekly on Tuesdays, 10:30 a.m.-noon, Swedish First Hill

Prostate Cancer Educational Support Group

Meets the third Thursday of the month, 8:30-9:30 a.m., Swedish First Hill
For more information, call Leo Ward at 425-957-7440.

Oral and Head & Neck Cancer Support

Meets the third Thursday of the month, 6-7:30 p.m., Swedish First Hill
For more information, call Joanne Fenn at 206-215-1770.


Patient Education Classes
Winter 2013

The Swedish Cancer Institute offers programs to assist you, and your family, friends and caregivers in making treatment decisions, managing your symptoms and accessing complementary programs to help heal mind, body and spirit. Registration is required for all classes unless otherwise indicated. To register, call 206-386-2502 or go to www.swedish.org/classes.

Class Locations

Please see each class listing for specific location details (room, floor, etc.). Some classes are offered at multiple locations, so please select the location that is most convenient for you.

Swedish First Hill - Arnold Pavilion, 1221 Madison St., Seattle, Wash.

Swedish Edmonds - 21601 76th Ave. W., Edmonds, Wash.

Swedish Issaquah - 751 N.E. Blakely Dr., Issaquah, Wash.

Issaquah Library - 10 W. Sunset Way, Issaquah Wash.

Lake Hills Library - 15590 Lake Hills Blvd.Bellevue, Wash.

Classes

Unless otherwise indicated, registration is required to attend complementary classes hosted by the Swedish Cancer Institute. Please go to www.swedish.org/classes or call 206-386-2502 to register.

After Breast Cancer: What’s Next?

An eight-week group for women who are preparing to live life after breast cancer treatment.
Date: Wednesdays, March 20 through May 8
Time: 4:30-6 p.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill campus – True Family Women’s Cancer Center, Healing Forum, 5th Floor
or
Date: Thursdays, March 21 through May 9
Time: 4:30-6 p.m.
Location: Swedish Edmonds – Auditorium A

After Cancer Treatment: What’s Next?

An eight-week group for all patients who are preparing to live life after cancer treatment.
Date: Tuesdays, March 19 through May 7
Time: 4:30-6 p.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill – True Family Women’s Cancer Center, Healing Forum, 5th Floor

The Anticancer Lifestyle

Explore recent findings on ways to increase your resistance to cancer with health educator Carol Robl. Learn how to create an anticancer lifestyle by eating beneficial foods, protecting yourself from environmental threats and enhancing your physical and emotional wellbeing.
Date: Wednesday, Feb. 20
Time: 6-7:30 p.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill – A-Floor West, Donald A. Tesh, M.D., Conference Rooms A and B

Breathing for Stress Reduction

Learn different breathing techniques and explore physical relaxation and meditation exercises that help reduce stress. This class focuses on calming the body and mind while reducing side effects from cancer treatment and medications.
Date: Wednesday, Feb. 13
Time: 2-3 p.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill – A-Floor West, Donald A. Tesh, M.D., Conference Rooms A and B

Card-Making Workshop

Come join us to make special notes for those you love and appreciate, just in time for Valentine’s Day! No previous art experience necessary. All materials provided.
Date: Monday, Feb. 11
Time: 10 a.m.-noon
Location: Swedish First Hill – A-Floor West, Donald A. Tesh, M.D., Conference Rooms A and B

Don’t Keep Putting It Off: A class to discuss living wills, medical and financial POA and hospice

Oncology social worker, Sylvia Farias, MSW, teaches a class for cancer patients and their loved ones to answer questions about end-of-life issues and available resources.
Date: Friday, March 15
Time: 1:30-3:30 p.m.
Location: Lake Hills Library

Eating Well When Dealing With Cancer

Join Brian Higginson, R.D., as he explains healthy eating, side effect management, and maximizing nutritional intake. Recipe, demonstration and sampling provided.
Date: Wednesday, March 6
Time: 3-4 p.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill – A-Floor West, Donald A. Tesh, M.D., Conference Rooms A and B

Fighting Cancer with Naturopathic Nutrition Strategies

Join naturopathic physician Lisa Price to learn how food and nutrition can affect cancer – what works and what to avoid. Co-sponsored by Northwest Natural Health.
Date: Tuesday, Feb. 12
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Location: Lake Hills Library
or
Date: Wednesday, Feb. 27
Time: 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Location: Swedish Issaquah – Room “Knowledge,” 2nd Floor Conference Center

Hair Alternatives

Come join appearance consultant Janet Bowman for a drop-in session that addresses issues experienced with chemotherapy. Find new ways to address eyebrows, eye lashes and hair loss, and learn how to create hair alternatives with scarves, hats and accessories.
Date: Wednesday, Feb. 13 or Wednesday, March 13
Time: 10 a.m.-noon
Location: Swedish First Hill – True Family Women’s Cancer Center, Healing Forum, 5th Floor

Healing the Whole Person: Body, Mind and Spirit

Join health educator Carol Robl as she explores guidelines that can enhance the lives of those with cancer, those who have completed treatment, and their family members. Concepts based on Dr. Jeremy Geffen’s Seven Levels of Healing.
Date: Tuesday, Feb. 5
Time: 10-11:30 a.m.
or
Date: Tuesday, March 12
Time: 3-4:30 p.m.
Location for both classes: Swedish First Hill – True Family Women’s Cancer Center, Healing Forum, 5th Floor

Look Good, Feel Better

This American Cancer Society class focuses on skin care, cosmetics, and hair care and hair loss. It is designed for women undergoing cancer treatment.

Swedish First Hill

Date: Monday, Feb. 11

Time: 1-3 p.m.
or
Date: Monday, March 11
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Location for both classes: Swedish First Hill – True Family Women’s Cancer Center, Healing Forum, 5th Floor

 

Swedish Edmonds

Date: Monday, Feb. 25
Time: 6-8 p.m.
or
Date: Monday, March 18
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Location for both classes: Swedish Edmonds – 3rd Floor Conference Room

Swedish Issaquah

Date: Monday, March 18
Time: 1-3 p.m.
Location: Swedish Issaquah – Room “Knowledge,” 2nd Floor Conference Center

Meditation for People with Cancer

Join Swedish physical therapist Carolyn McManus for a two-part class that teaches mindfulness meditation.
Date: Tuesdays, Feb. 19 and 26
Time: 3:30-5 p.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill – A-Floor West, Donald A. Tesh, M.D., Conference Rooms A and B

Screening for Lung Cancer: The Time Has Come!

Catch your breath after the holidays and join thoracic surgeon Ralph Aye, M.D., as he discusses the latest in lung cancer screening and current recommendations. Hear about state-of-the-art detection strategies and practical tips to determine whether screening is right for you or a loved one.
Date: Thursday, Feb. 21
Time: 6:30-8 p.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill – A-Floor West, Donald A. Tesh, M.D., Conference Rooms A and B

Transition to Recovery – Reclaiming Your Life

How do you transition to recovery? How do you move from active cancer treatment to redefining the rest of your life? Join psychiatrist Dorcas Dobie, M.D., for a discussion about moving forward with meaning and purpose.
Date: Tuesday, March 5
Time: 7-8:30 p.m.
Location: Issaquah Library

Women’s Health and Cancer

Join naturopathic physician Kathleen Pratt to learn strategies for maintaining good health. Co-sponsored by Northwest Natural Health.
Date: Tuesday, Feb. 26
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Location: Lake Hills Library

Writes of Passage – Poetry for Revealing Depth, Truth and Meaning

Join Seattle poet Vicky Edmonds to learn simple ways to use poetic elements to access the deepest parts of ourselves, and find relief and inspiration in the most genuine places in our human lives. No previous writing experience necessary.
Date: Wednesday, Feb. 6
Time: 10 a.m.-noon
Location: Swedish First Hill – True Family Women’s Cancer Center, Healing Forum, 5th Floor

Yoga for Relaxation and Stress Relief

Learn gentle yoga poses and breathing techniques that will help relax the body and nervous system during cancer treatment. No previous yoga experience necessary. Bring a large beach towel and dress comfortably. Chairs and other modifications are available.
Date: Wednesday, Feb. 20
Time: 2-3 p.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill – A-Floor West, Donald A. Tesh, M.D., Conference Rooms A and B

 


Creative Expression

Art Therapy: An Approach for Healing

Art therapy is a confidential, supportive and individualized experience for visually and verbally examining health issues through self-exploration. No experience or confidence in art-making is necessary. All materials are provided. Ongoing weekly sessions are available by appointment only. Please call 206-215-6178 to make an appointment.
Location: Swedish First Hill – A-Floor West, Cancer Education Center

Healing Arts Group

Experience the healing benefits of art-making in a supportive setting. This drop-in art therapy group is open to cancer patients, their family members and caregivers. No experience or confidence in art-making is necessary. All materials provided. Questions? Please call 206-215-6178.
Date: Thursdays (ongoing)
Time: 10 a.m.-noon
Location: Swedish First Hill – True Family Women’s Cancer Center, Healing Forum, 5th Floor

Knit for Life™

This network of volunteers uses knitting as a healing experience to enhance the lives of cancer patients, their families and caregivers during treatment and recovery. It provides a supportive environment for beginners and experienced knitters. All materials are provided. For more information, call 206-386-3200.

Swedish First Hill
Date: Thursdays (ongoing)
Time: 1-3 p.m.
Location: Swedish First Hill – Swedish Cancer Institute, First-floor Lobby

Swedish Issaquah
Date: Mondays (ongoing)
Time: 1-3 p.m.
Location: Swedish Issaquah – Medical Office Building, Main Lobby, in front of fireplace

 


 

One kind word can warm three winter months.
 – Japanese Proverb

 

 

 

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