This Place Is Like A Flower, by Debbie Beyer
“It’s like a flower to me.” That’s how Rosalyn Green describes Cancer Support Community. Rosalyn is a regular attendee at the Qigong, Tai Chi and Gentle Yoga classes, which she says bring her peace of mind and help give her a better understanding of her body. “It’s like I’m blossoming and growing. I’m learning who I am through these classes.”
Rosalyn had been feeling poorly over a prolonged period and her white blood count was rising, so her family doctor referred her to an oncologist. After numerous tests, Rosalyn was diagnosed in 2013 with Stage III multiple myeloma, the second most common blood cancer in the U.S.
A New Jersey native, Rosalyn moved to Columbus five years ago to raise her two grandchildren and to be close to other family members. “I came here for a better life,” she said, referring to the high rate of crime in the Camden neighborhood she left behind.
After her diagnosis, Rosalyn had two six-month rounds of chemotherapy, which helped her manage the pain she was experiencing. But 18 months later, she ended up back in the hospital; her lymph nodes had swollen to the point that she was having trouble breathing.
Rosalyn’s cancer journey has included periods of depression, where she would isolate herself from others. “There were times when I didn’t feel good and I was mad. Everything got on my nerves and I didn’t want to be around other people,” she explained. Because she was constantly feeling sick and fatigued, Rosalyn to have to quit her job as a Certified Nurse’s Aide. With two growing boys to look after, she was experiencing a lot of stress.
In October 2016, Rosalyn decided to look into Cancer Support Community. She had seen the sign in front of the building and stopped in one day to learn more. “It was one of the best things I could have done,” Rosalyn stated.
After attending the Newcomer Welcome program, Rosalyn began participating in Mindfulness Meditation and other classes to reduce her stress and anxiety. “I feel energized,” Rosalyn said about the Tai Chi, Qigong and Gentle Yoga classes. “It has helped me gain strength and mental clarity.”
“When I was sick all the time, I just wasn’t happy,” Rosalyn explained. “Feeling bad impacts how you look at everything, including yourself. It impacts your feeling of self-worth.”
“I look forward to coming here; I love this place,” Rosalyn said abut Cancer Support Community. She has started to understand what her body is going through, and she is paying a lot of attention to what she eats. Juicing is one of her daily routines now.
“I have knowledge now and I must keep moving forward. There’s no cure for multiple myeloma, but it can be managed, and that’s what I’m doing now. I’m very grateful for Cancer Support Community.”
Written By: Debbie Beyer