Mindfulness Based Cancer Survivorship: A Women’s Journey toward Healing

Join us for a unique experience of healing and self discovery. This course will contain the core elements of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), which includes intensive instruction and practice in mindfulness meditation techniques, but will take place in a community of women who have been diagnosed with and are being transformed by cancer. Each class will also include facilitated discussions on how we can use mindfulness to relate to our cancer journey, how we intentionally reclaim our lives, how we are changed by cancer and its treatment and how we can be more fully our true selves than ever before. Cancer came into our lives unbidden, and yet we must engage with it directly. Our cancer journey changes everything. We are never the same. Perhaps this can be a call to wake up into our lives, into the only moment we have to be alive, this present moment.

Where: Open Way Mindfulness Center (702 Brooks street, Missoula, MT)

When: Sundays, October 8th-November 26th from 2-4:30 pm with a day long retreat on Saturday November 18th from 9 am-4pm

Cost: $300* includes 27 hours of guided mindfulness instruction, workbook, and access to my guided recordings.

Contact: Susan at susan@montanamindfulness.com or 406-529-4744. Telephone or in-person orientation is required to register

This eight week journey will include:

  • Comprehensive instruction and practice in mindfulness meditation comparable to a traditional MBSR program: body scanning and awareness, awareness of breath, sitting meditation, mindful movement in the form of gentle yoga and qigong, awareness of thoughts and emotions, working with habitual patterns of thought and behavior, and more.
  • Group discussion and reflection on topics related to wellbeing, recovery from the impacts of cancer and its treatment and what constitutes healing, vitality and wellness.
  • Acknowledging and working with the repercussions of cancer and its treatment: the physical, emotional, and spiritual impacts of what we have been through.
  • How we can use mindfulness to learn to take wise and compassionate care of ourselves, whether still in treatment or many years beyond it.
  • Mining for gold: what we have learned, what we have gained, and what we now have to give.
  • Focus on each of us whole people, not just people with a history of cancer. We are already whole and always have been. Cancer can not take that away from us.

Each class includes:

  • Guided meditation practice with instruction
  • Gentle mindful movement practices (Qigong, yoga or walking meditation)
  • Time for questions and answers regarding practices
  • Facilitated discussion in small and large groups
  • Supported home practices

Not only is there life after cancer, but we can live even better because of having this experience. 

About your instructor: Susan Curtis

I have been there… In 2014, at the age of 47, I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. I had two major surgeries followed by 12 weeks of chemotherapy. My world was completely shaken up, and I was quickly stripped of everything that had once seemed to define me. At the same time, I felt more alive than I had in years. Never have I felt more love, more joy, more fear, more powerless, more connected and more cracked open than during those months of surgery, chemotherapy and recovery. I made a vow to myself to really live the life that was given to me and not just go through the motions, to live not from a place of fear but from a place of wonder, to not just put the pieces of my life back together, but to let go of some pieces and add others in order to move toward vitality. Cancer changed me at a core level. Finishing chemotherapy was certainly not the end of the journey for me but the beginning of a new exploration into what healing really means.

As a practicing physician and a certified MBSR instructor, I am passionate about helping others make sense of their cancer journey and move from surviving into thriving. Whether you have been recently diagnosed or are many years out from your treatment, this course can help you find meaning in the chaos of the cancer experience and embrace a greater sense of healing and wellbeing.