In this series, I take you through my cancer journey step by step, and show you how creating SoulCollage® cards helped me to express my feelings, find my balance, and create a haven of inner peace where I was able to stay connected to Self, Others, and Spirit. As I share my journey with you, I hope that it brings you or those you love some measure of inner peace, and a movement towards acceptance and a possibility of joy.
When I was first diagnosed with breast cancer I was terrified, angry, surprised, worried, and felt betrayed by my body.
There is never a convenient time to receive a cancer diagnosis. Here's how it felt to me, metaphorically speaking.
As you can imagine, fear is one of the most heart-stopping feelings that accompanied each of my cancer diagnoses. Creating this SoulCollage® card and dialoging with it in my journal gave me a way to express this fiery, choking fear that I was feeling.
When I was diagnosed, one of the things that kept coming up was a prolonged feeling of helplessness. Part of the journaling work we do with our cards involves allowing them to tell us what gift or gifts they bring to us.
How I balanced the aching loneliness of a cancer diagnosis with a sense of connection to community. If you are in the midst of a journey with cancer, I invite you to pause for a moment now and enter into the space of gratitude.
Approaching my surgery was particularly terrifying. Engaging in the SoulCollage® process helped calm my fear in surgery.
The practice of SoulCollage® can guide us through absolutely anything. This card tenderly touched on exactly what I needed right then.
Finding and working with SoulCollage® images inspired hope. Journaling with this card was by no means the end of its message and meaning for me.
If I learned only one valuable lesson on my journey with cancer, it was to stay out of the future, out of the past, and to rest in the present moment.
After two lumpectomies and a lymph node dissection, my chest and left arm were never the same. But after discovering SoulCollage, an intuitive art process created by Seena Frost, I realized that I could honor this part of myself that was somewhat resentful about the physical wounds I had to bear.
In the practice of SoulCollage, we make cards for our inner personality parts, our shadow parts, archetypes and spirit guides, and animal companions as well. We also make cards for the people in our lives who have loved us, influenced us and touched our hearts in some way.
When I let my cards speak to me, I felt great peace in my heart because they spoke to me about the possibility of healing. They spoke to me about how I wouldn't always feel exhausted and world-weary.
Sometimes a SoulCollage® card comes together in a way that puzzles me, because I'm not sure what it could possibly mean. When I journaled with these images on my collage, they spoke to me as a unit. And the relief I experienced was enormous.
Anne Marie Bennett is a published author, self-taught artist, and SoulCollage® Facilitator/Trainer with a website dedicated to helping women with any kind of cancer stay connected to Self, Others, and Spirit. ...