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Deborah’s Story

I've created this website to keep friends and family updated during this breast cancer journey. I greatly appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Many people have asked how to help support me during this journey.

Please join me on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DeborahCohansHealingJourney

1. Download Transform Your Life: a year of awareness practice by Cheri Huber. Set the alarm for 9am pacific time. We will then be reading the same Buddhist quote at the same time every day. A lovely way to connect with each other.

2. Dance! 

3. Donate to a charity.

***Bay Area Perinatal AIDS Center: http://hiv.ucsf.edu/care/perinatal.html
Please consider donating to this organization of which I am Medical Director. 

*** San Francisco General Hospital Healing Through Movement Fund:
This newly-created project will bring movement and dance to both patients and medical providers. The goals of the program include to help patients learn about their bodies and use movement and dance to both promote wellness as well as cope with illness and dis-ease. This project will also include developing and disseminating a movement/dance curriculum for medical providers in order to cultivate the lost art of healing touch and physical listening, enhance surgical skills, and build community.

Blessings to all of you,

Latest Journal Update

Entering the subtle realms...

My body is ushering me into the subtle realms of movement and being. On the cusp of my cancer diagnosis anniversary and in the midst of returning to work– thinking I may have multiple sclerosis but instead… “fucked up good news” to quote dear friend Nancy. Herniated discs with some impingement of my spinal cord. My 4 new teachers – 3 in my neck, 1 in my thoracic spine. Many possible etiologies: unergonomic movement while playing the violin, delivering babies, doing surgery, working at the computer, dancing ferociously. But really, it relates to my busy mind. Too much swimming in that brain, all of those thoughts -- reworking the past, wondering about the future -- needed a release and found a path of least resistance between the discs of my spinal column. These protrusions teaching me to explore grace, fluidity, subtle connection and specificity of movement using a body that is slightly clumsy and off-balance. These protrusions cultivating empathy so that I can teach movement to “non-dancers” with a deeper appreciation of vulnerability. A hard few weeks, waves of disappointment with my body, envy as I watched fellow dancers engage in the acrobatic lifts and full-on contact improvisation that I love so deeply, worry that I wouldn’t be able to dance again in a way that feeds my soul. I noticed these thoughts and, finally yesterday, let them drift off into the clouds. Honoring my body as the solution, not the source of my problems. My body is not betraying me, it is communicating profound lessons if I’m willing to listen.

ps. Profound gratitude to Rick Couglin and Michelle Harui at ODC's Healthy Dancer's Clinic, a gift to the dance community those two... Thrilled that I got a green light to (carefully and gently) dance...

10 people hearted this



Sandi Fohl
By Sandi Fohl
Your positivity radiates throughout your journal entries....believing and knowing that you will dance again.
1 person hearted this
karen beckerman
By Karen Beckerman
I am so sorry to hear of these new "teachers", but so grateful to you for sharing your inspiring thoughts. Love and gentle hugs, Karen
1 person hearted this
Dawn Jester
By dawn hurley
Beautifully said!
1 person hearted this
Mary Winston
By Mary
Deborah, First of all a sweet and happy New Year secondly a good friend of mine always tells me about my anxieties...tie a string on them, take them outside and let them go...

Sending you positive energy,
2 people hearted this
Pam Kazlauskas
You will move through this too, Deborah. Hope you are feeling better soon!
1 person hearted this
Brenda Richterkessing
By Brenda Richterkessing
Thanks for this post. As someone who has experienced a herniated disc resting on my sciatic nerve....which led to many treatments and then finally to surgery to relieve the pain, I appreciate your fresh perspective. ("...needed a release and found a path of least resistance between the discs of my spinal column"). Based on the way you express yourself, I am assuming you are already familiar with Louise Hay's excellent book, "You Can Heal Your Life." Revisit it. Back problems - represents the support of life (lower....fear of money, middle...guilt, upper...lack of emotional support. Hernia - ruptured relationships. Strain, burdens, incorrect creative expression). Sending healing thoughts.
1 person hearted this
Carol Carter
By Carol Carter
I was moved earlier today as I read this and again tonight. You teach us with every breath. Amazing. Blessings.
1 person hearted this
Andy Blank
By Andy Blank
Your attitude is inspiring...what a gift for your children :)
1 person hearted this
Megan Beardsley
By Megan
Phew! Let your mind dance a little less, not your body. xoxo
1 person hearted this
Debbie Spriggs
By Debbie Spriggs
When we hear the 'thundering hooves' coming our way, it's easy to think zebras , rather than horses! So glad it's not MS, but rather, a grouchy back. But it is not surprising that your back is stressed, since most of our emotions are tied there. Youve had quite a stressful year. And your back is trying to teach you it's turn for some attention and working those stressors out of your life and out of your spine(: Then it will let you dance .
1 person hearted this