The Nigerian storyteller Ben Okri once wrote, “a people are as healthy and confident as the stories they tell themselves. Sick storytellers can make nations sick. Without stories we would go mad. Life would lose its moorings or orientation…. Stories can conquer fear, you know. They can make the heart larger.” In sharing the stories of our patients, we at InspireHealth have indeed had our hearts made larger. We are honoured and blessed to be a part of their stories -your stories. They are of love, of compassion, of triumph, of loss, of our shared humanity, of connecting with our deeper truth and Grace. Our clients speak of hope and their stories testify to what is possible.
Over the years for example, many have spoken to the incredible power of being an InspireHealth member and of our two-day LIFE program….
“The patient story resonated with me and gave me much hope (when I thought I had none). Now I dream of what seemed impossible before. Thank you for existing.”
“This program truly inspires me at the deepest level to make changes in my life to have a better life with or without cancer. Thanks for teaching from the heart with sound, factual and profound research as well as inspirational stories.”
“Participating in this seminar was like taking a big breath of fresh air. I resonated with the storm analogy today (on the second day)… I think I have found calm in my own storm.”
“This has been a life-changing two days for me. I am so grateful for the experience and the tools I have gained. I only wish this type of program was available to all people for prevention. Thank you all so much!”
“The LIFE program was a great light for me. I was so scared upon receiving my diagnosis, I didn’t know who to turn to, what to do. But after attending the LIFE Program, I realized that healing begins within me. I feel empowered to take charge of my health and healing. I am hopeful about my situation and feel incredibly renewed. Thank you!”
It is of no small thing that nearly every community in the world has held rituals, customs, traditions, sacred moments in the day carved out and reserved for sharing stories. Still today, the tradition of storytelling lives on: many of us have for example been read fairytales as children, and then we move on to read them to our own. Stories have proven themselves, again and again, to be powerful and impactful and can inspire someone to change the course of their life.
We at InspireHealth look to stories to inspire, to build community, and to provide needed perspectives on cancer care. As we step into 2011, our wish is to establish our own storytelling tradition by creating space for you to share your story with us, the InspireHealth community, and beyond. You may recall reading parts of this article in our July 5th 2010 newsletter. We want to take story-sharing to a whole new level and would like to invite you, once again, to share your story with us. We want to hear from you, each and every one of you -patients, support people, partners, medical practitioners, volunteers, etc. You do not need to be a professional writer; we value and want to read your story in your words. If you feel called to share your insights and perspective on integrative cancer care and your InspireHealth experience, please take a few moments to email Jacs Spence at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will work to share as many stories as we can, as appropriate, and will contact you prior to making your story public. (Further details included in the above link)
Will you join in creating a meaningful storytelling tradition of inspiration, heart and spirit within InspireHealth’s ever-growing community?
We look forward to hearing from you.
David Adams, Director of Operations &
Christine Butler, Development Assistant