Alternative and complementary therapies


One of the great things, when the Cancer Centre here really was moved all into the one campus and opened in a new building, was that, there’s a researcher who also specializes in breast cancer and she really felt that exercise that cancer patients should be able to exercise and she started it with breast cancer patients as a research study. It then got to be any cancer patient who was referred by their oncologist. I went there for 5 years and then it ran out of money and let me tell you, I’m in pretty good shape given my age, a lot of it because of that. When I, before I retired, I used to walk back and forth to work an hour each day. There are reasons for that, one it gets you ready for the day, walking is the best exercise you can do, and walking home kind of gets rid of you all the nuttiness of your day. I needed something after that so I tried a couple of local gyms. They’re very expensive these things. We could go to this gym free until the study ended, until they actually ran out of money and it was run by a kinesiologist. 

The other thing that did and it was the only one in Canada by the way. The other thing that did was to provide a sort of informal supportive group. We could talk to each other about fears or anxieties or "Oh I’m going for my mammogram tomorrow or I’m going for a colonoscopy tomorrow." "Okay well we’ll ask you when you come back" So the next time "How did it go?" You’d want to know. Funny things happened, we would, we laughed a lot in these things. I remember there was one… and some of these people I’m still, some of these women I’m still in touch with them. I remember one of them saying one day when the kinesiologist we were doing group. We could do our own exercise and then the group, if we wanted to and she said "Okay we have to get down on the floor now" And one of the girls on the other side said "If I get down on the floor it’s going to take a crane to get me up off here" Just that sort of thing. There was another girl whose hair was coming back, her chemo was over and her hair was not quite grown back and she was wearing a wig and we all had water bottles and she used to come in each day and she’d put the wig on top of the water bottle and just leave it sitting there. I still think of her like that and she’s doing well.


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