This is Anne Crook’s second time as a guest on the podcast, she was my first ever guest, back in episode 2, where she shared her story with breast cancer. This time she is sharing her story with melanoma that happened in 2022, and how with her second cancer diagnosis, she was able to use all that she learned going from her first bout with cancer to really keep her grounded, and out of the fear state this time around, resulting in a full recovery from her stage 1b melanoma. This is a story of hope and inspiration, letting you know that you too can be a two-time cancer thriver when you tap into community, spirituality, in order to keep yourself out of the fear state.
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About the Guest:
Anne Ferrier Crook is a Certified Integrative Health Coach, AADP, Holding Space Consultant, and Certified Medical Interpreter, CMI-Spanish. She has worked in many facets of healthcare for the past 23 years with regard to holding space for life’s sacred thresholds. Anne is passionate about supporting others to heal and transform their body-mind-spirit through an integrative approach so they can shift from “surviving” to fully thriving. She brings a compassionate presence and empowers clients to re-ignite their inner healer for greater joy and vitality. Anne is one of 4 Co-Founders of “The Breast Connection: Prevention + Healing Community” – a global wellness community that offers free Zoom events to connect others around breast health, self-care, empowerment, and support. She has been featured in online summits, retreats, podcasts, a global docuseries, and 2 best-seller books called “The Global Resilience Project” and “Thresholds: 75 Stories of How Changing Your Perspective Can Change Your Life.” Her motto in life is to live and love fully!
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About the Host:
Melissa is an Integrative Health Practitioner and Master Practitioner in NLP and Timeline Therapy and a Board Designated Hypnotherapy Teacher Trainer, helping people get to the root cause of their health issues and then get lasting results. Melissa neither diagnoses nor cures but helps bring your body back into balance by helping discover your “toxic load” and then removing the toxins. Melissa offers functional medicine lab testing that helps you “see inside” to know exactly what is going on, and then provides a personalized wellness protocol using natural herbs and supplements. Melissa’s business is 100% virtual – the lab tests are mailed directly to your home and she specializes in holding your hand and guiding the way to healing so that you don’t have to figure it all out on your own.
Melissa is the winner of the 2021 & 2022 Quality Care Award by Business From The Heart and is also the recipient of the Alignable “Local Business Person of the Year “Award 2022 for Whistler.
Melissa has been featured at a number of Health & Wellness Summits, such as the Health, Wealth & Wisdom Summit, The Power To Profit Summit, The Feel Fan-freaking-tas-tic Summit, the Aim Higher Summit and many more! She has also guested on over 60 different podcasts teaching people about the importance of prioritizing our health and how to get get started.
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Imagine getting up every day full of energy is if you were in your 20s. Again, what would that be like?What would that be worth toMelissa Deally:
you? What is your health worth to you? Think about it. Your health isn't everything. But without it, everything else is nothing. And yet too many of us are taking it for granted until something goes wrong. No one wakes up hoping to be diagnosed with a disease or chronic illness. And yet, we've never been taught how to be proactive in our health through our school system, or public health. As a registered health coach and integrative health practitioner, I believe it is time this information is made available to everyone. Combining new knowledge around your health and the ability to do my functional medicine lab tests in the comfort of your own home will allow you to optimize your health for today and all your tomorrow's don't wait for your wake up call welcome back to another episode of The don't wait for your wake up call podcast. I am Melissa Deally, your host and today I am here with Anne Crook. Welcome back to the show. AndAnne Ferrier Crook:
Thanks Melissa. It's great to be here.Melissa Deally:
I'm so excited to have you back because of course you were my first guest on the show way back in episode two. And so for anybody that wants to hear your whole story, I invite you to go back and listen to episode two of the don't wait for your Wake Up Calls podcast because Anna and I are going to be picking up where we left off at that point. However, I do want to introduce you again to the audience just so people know who you are and all that you do, and is a certified integrative health coach, holding space consultant and certified medical interpreter with Spanish and English. She has worked in many facets of health care for the past 23 years with regard to holding space for life sacred thresholds and is passionate about supporting others to heal and transform their mind body spirit through an integrative approach so they can shift from surviving to fully thriving. She brings a compassionate presence and empowers clients to reignite their inner healer for greater joy and vitality, and is one of the four co founders of the breast connection prevention and healing community, a global wellness community that offers free zoom events to connect others around breast health, self care, empowerment and support. She has been featured in online summits, retreats, podcasts and global Docu series and two best seller books called the Global Resilience Project and thresholds 75 stories of how changing your perspective can change your life. Her motto is to live and love fully. So I absolutely love that and and we're going to be talking about how changing your perspective can change your life as well as how you have continued to move from surviving to thriving. So let's pick up from where we left off last time. Last time you shared your story of getting a diagnosis of breast cancer and then your story all the way through overcoming that and becoming a cancer survivor. But since that time, you have had a another bout with cancer. And that's what I want to talk about today. I would love you to share that story.Anne Ferrier Crook:
Well, first off, thank you for inviting me to come back on your podcast Melissa. It's just great to be here. AndMelissa Deally:
it's my pleasure to have you back because of course this episode is airing during June 2023. And June is National Cancer Survivor month. And I love to share stories of inspiration and hope. And so there are other people that may be battling with news of cancer a second time and your story can give them hope.Anne Ferrier Crook:
Absolutely. And I also love sharing a message of hope and healing. So that is my intention today who's ever listening to this? May it shed a light of hope and healing for you if you're going through a second bout with cancer or even a first bout or third bout. So I'd love to just start by answering your question about you know, picking up with my second journey. So just so listeners know my my first experience with stage one breast cancer was back in April of 2018. So I just celebrated my five year anniversary. And it was amazing to reach that milestone. That's a big milestone for anyone who's gone through cancer. But let's go back to July of 2022. I had really come to a place of surviving to thriving from the breast cancer and I've been just really enjoying you know working as an integrative health coach and supporting women who have gone through breast cancer and working with private clients and collaborating with other great like minded spirits like Melissa and just really doing great in my life and And really in a happy place and feeling relaxed and calm and, and, and, you know, sure enough, I come into this moment back in July of 2022, where I found this mole. And I was scratching it because I get a lot of freckles, I had some sunburns as a kid growing up. And I thought how well that that's a little dark and raised, but I'm not too concerned, I think I'll just go check it out. I haven't had a dermatologist, check me out for a number of years. So you know, found a good dermatologist here in town. And she looked at it and she's like, you know, I'm not too concerned, I think it's normal. But just to be safe, let's just send it off and get a pathology report. So she removed it. Well, it takes about two to three weeks to get the results back. And I'm not too concerned, I'm pretty confident it's all good. And then I'm walking into the clinic. I'm a certified Spanish medical interpreter, and I spend a lot of time in the oncology clinic, doing Spanish interpreting for oncology patients. So I'm walking into work with a patient and I get a call and they said, Hey, we're calling from the dermatologist. And are you sitting down? And I said, Do I need to be and they said, Yes, you need to be sitting down, we hope you've had some breakfast. Let's just take a pause here to give you some news. Well, I have another deer in the headlights moment. Here I am four years past the breast cancer diagnosis. And lo and behold, I'm facing an invasive melanoma. But what changed what was different this time around is that I was in my happy place, I stayed calm, I did not let my fear paralyze me as it had back in April of 2018. And I was able to literally embody and walk my talk of what I talked to my clients about the importance of, of just being in what we call a healing state or in the parasympathetic, rest and digest healing state and not being an anxious, you know, sympathetic, which is the state of arousal state of stress. So I really took a deep breath, and I went through that ordeal. And I wound up having surgery about probably 10 days later. And the irony is that the dermatologist sent me back to my original surgeon having no idea that this doctor had operated on me in 2018. So I love the synchronicity. The good news is that the melanoma was not in my lymph nodes, my doctor got a clear margin. And it wound up being a stage one B. And all it required was surgery and some physical therapy, because they did remove more lymph nodes, and I have some numbness under my left arm. But wow, there were so many powerful takeaways from that experience. So I'll stop there. But it really kind of solidified everything I had learned from breast cancer. And it gave me an opportunity to go through that experience in a completely different state.Melissa Deally:
And I love that you had that learning from your first experience in order to be able to go through this one in a completely different state. And you knew that the fear if you allow yourself to crumble to the fear that that leaves you in a stress state. And in this stress state, our immune system isn't functioning, as well as it is when we're in the rest and digest state. And that the body doesn't heal in a stressed out state as a result. And so you have the tools to be able to recognize what was going on and choose to stay in your parasympathetic, rest and digest system state and stay out of the fear state in order to allow your body the best chance to heal from this and get through this.Anne Ferrier Crook:
Yes, yes. And another powerful. I just had so many powerful takeaways. But one of the biggest is that in the past four years since breast cancer, I've been building community. And as we all know, you know, we were all building community online during the pandemic. And you Melissa have been one of the most significant people in my life, during this time of building community and supporting each other. And through our connection and amplifying and expanding those connections we keep making, I've met all these wonderful cancer thrivers we like to call ourselves and I've built partnerships with these people. And we're now you know, paying it forward with what we've learned from cancer. And so when I was going through that scary second bout with cancer, I was able to not only draw from my faith over fear and my trust that a higher power really has my back and notice the synchronicity and all of these events. But I was also able to draw from the community that I've been building in Research shows that people who have support during a cancer scare are so much more likely to experience a good outcome just from the power of healing support. And so it gave me an opportunity to be the person going through the cancer, scared to feel the power community, and then take that wisdom and that knowledge back into the community that I'm building. SoMelissa Deally:
I love that you share that because we humans are not supposed to go through life alone, and certainly not heal alone. And community is such a powerful piece of that. And it was actually at one of your breast connection meetings where we heard that information and 75% increase benefit and survival rate when you lower your stress, and healing community. So love that you had that community this time around. We'll keep going. I love these takeaways. So keep sharing your takeaways?Anne Ferrier Crook:
Well, it was just really cool. And just an amazing experience that I had been building community over the past four years. But then all of a sudden, here I was the cancer patient again. And here I was finding myself in these shoes that I had been in, you know, four and a half years ago at the time. But instead of breast cancer, I was facing an invasive melanoma. And I got to be on the receiving end of what the healing power of community actually feels like when you're going through a cancer scare. So when I felt the power of the community that I had been building, it gave me a chance to go back into that community that I've created with the breast connection and with you and with other like minded spirits, and know the impact the positive impact it has on people going through a health crisis. So it really gave me a first hand experience of what it feels like.Melissa Deally:
I love that. Because then of course in your coaching with others, when you're helping them through their cancer journey, you can really relate to them the importance of that they can tap into whatever community options they have, and or the breast connection because you now have a community to offer your clients as well.Anne Ferrier Crook:
Yes, yes, and, and what we've also, what we're going to be talking about, actually in June at the breast connection is the power of storytelling, we're going to bring on the editor of wildfire magazine, which is a fabulous magazine for breast cancer survivors all over the world. And just through the power of sharing stories, it it's very calming to the nervous system, when you're going through a health crisis, to hear other people's stories and just to know that you're not alone. And so that's the other piece, I want to say, you know, and just to piggyback on what you said about why communities important is that we're not meant to heal alone. We're meant to heal and thrive together. And that's what we say the breast connection, we believe that we heal and thrive together.Melissa Deally:
And I love that and you're 100% right about the sharing of the stories, which is why I love sharing the stories on the podcast, right? In that moment of getting a diagnosis, we can feel so alone. Even if we have loving family members around us that are supporting us to the best of their ability. If they haven't been through it, we still feel like they don't really know what's going on. And therefore, it feels lonely. And that can be scary. However, when we can tap into the community of others who have been through it, that's where we can feel comfortable, learn from other people's stories, what they tried, what worked, what didn't work, etc, and learn about, you know, maybe a broader array of options as well. And research, you know, books that other people are reading, you know, information that other people have access to, so that we can feel like we have more power in our journey. And that's really what it's all about is taking our power back. Too often. Doctors will take our power away because we basically give it away. It's not them taking it away. It's just the way we were raised the belief that we get sick, we go to the doctor and they fix us. Well that is giving our power away. And doctors are doing their best and they mean well but sometimes when they tell you the stats, that can be really scary for you. But if you hear the story of just one person who has overcome the type of cancer that you have, you can then focus on if they did it, I can do itAnne Ferrier Crook:
too. Exactly. Exactly. And I love that you mentioned taking your power back because I can honestly say I've having gone through Answer twice. Now, that's a big part of the healing is feeling empowered feeling like I am the one that is on top of this, and I'm the one that's, you know, I have agency over my health moving forward, that I have a sense of say, in what's going on. And I think that, you know, when you get rushed down the rabbit hole, and there's all this fear. And I think the hardest part about any cancer journey is the uncertain period where you don't know what you're facing yet, you have to wait weeks to find out your pathology reports sometimes, and your pins on needles, you know, just waiting to find out those results. And it can be quite scary and overwhelming. And there's really a feeling of losing control during that time. And so anything you can do to take back your power and to feel like you have agency over your health can be really calming for the nervous system. And I think what you were just saying is, you know, hearing other people's stories that have also gone through the fear of a cancer diagnosis and seeing that they did come out well on the other side. And just to have that sense of hope can be very calming, very calming for the body. And when we're in that place of parasympathetic, which is the healing state, our body heals, we sleep better, we have less stress, and we're more likely to have a good outcome. So yeah, I just want to piggyback on what you said, Melissa, about the importance of being around people that understand what you're going through, and can lift you up in that process. So important.Melissa Deally:
Absolutely. And I think back to my own cancer experience, which I've talked a little about a little bit about here and other episodes that when I was actually told that I had the melanoma, something inside me told me, Don't worry. And that allowed me not to get caught up in the stress of the medical system. And then I didn't have to be immediately rushed into surgery, et cetera, et cetera. And I innately trusted my body. And that allowed me this was before I was in the health industry at all. So I didn't even know about the parasympathetic nervous system at that point, literally. But it allowed me to stay in a place of calm and stay out of a place of fear. And I'm so grateful that I had the awareness to listen to my body, because my body innately knows. Yes, when we're too busy and more stressed out, we don't slow down enough to listen. But our body does innately know, it does. And so that was how I stayed out of that fear stage in my journey,Anne Ferrier Crook:
and that makes me think about how very personal Our choices are when it comes to how we're going to move through a cancer diagnosis. And, and I would say the most important thing I would share with listeners is that whatever healing journey you choose, that it feels in alignment for you, because not every cancer survivor is going to share the same healing journey and we have, you know, the treatment plan, which is get the fire out, let's get rid of the crisis. But that's not the same thing as a healing plan. Right? You know, after the fire has calmed down, we get through surgery, chemo, radiation, whatever treatment, a patient's gone through, well, then it's like now what? Now I've got to heal and prevent recurrence. And so, and that's where you and I step in is, you know, integrative health coaches is helping people with a healing plan. And so what was so important and empowering for me is, knowing that the choices I was making was in alignment with what's right for an and that might be different than what's right for Melissa, or the next person. But when your body feels in alignment with your plan, then your body's going to heal. But if you're getting a huge like no and your body's shouting, don't do that, then my my recommendation is listen to your body, your body knows what's right for you.Melissa Deally:
100%, I totally agree with you. And I've heard other cancer survivors say the same thing, in terms of them having chosen to be empowered in their journey and make their decisions as to how they approached it based on what their body was telling them. And they're here today sharing their stories and very grateful for that. And so, with that, I think comes the message to let people know that you can take a moment to breathe. When you get that diagnosis, you get a flood of information is so this is what you have to do this, this, this, this this this and it feels very overwhelming and very scary. And there's a lot of pressure to do it very, very quickly. And I understand that the medical industry wants to obviously help you survive. And you don't want to wait eight months to start implementing their plan. However, you do have time to take a moment and breathe and a get second opinions. Be just sit with it and ask your body what is right for me, as opposed to just being pushed right down that rabbit hole, which is literally what they were trying to do to me was diagnosis on Thursday surgery on Monday morning. Right? Yeah, that's almost no time to think or brief, right. And so I didn't make the appointment for the surgery on Monday morning, I took the time to think brief contact my skin cancer specialist, because it was my family GP giving me the news to get a second opinion.Anne Ferrier Crook:
Well, I love that you mentioned the breath, because that's the first resource we have to get into that parasympathetic healing state. And many of us are conditioned to breathe from our neck up. And we're not actually doing you know, the deep breathing that calms the nervous system down. And so I love that you brought up the breath, because it's so important, when we're in that fear state, to just take a breath, and start to focus on really deep breathing, and that slows everything down. And when we're in a place of relaxation, we can actually make better choices that feel more connected to our intuition and some of the things that you were just saying,Melissa Deally:
I love that. And our breath is free. And we always have it with us. So there's no excuses, that is not available to you. Because it's always available to you. Even if you have to step into the washroom to be able to just have some privacy while you breathe, you can do that. If you're enjoying my content, and someone that wants to step into being proactive in your health and learning more, I would love to invite you to join my membership community.Melissa Deally:
There's a link in the show notes for only 1999 a month, you get access to all of my content. And there's a lot as well as weekly calls that you can come and get your health questions answered.Melissa Deally:
It's truly priceless. I'd love to see you join the community, check out the link in the show notes.Melissa Deally:
So tell me and what's what have you noticed that's, you know, different in terms of how you approach life. Now, having gone through this a second time, maybe it's how you approach life, how you work with your clients, what's changed for you, since going through this,Anne Ferrier Crook:
oh, my gosh, I recall sending out an email to my community. And you being part of that with all these takeaways I had that were so powerful for me. And I'm just going to share several that I remember, one, life is precious, don't take it for granted and make it count. And for me, I had a bucket list that I created back in 2020, during COVID. And I like to call it my limit list, which a friend that I met in British Columbia said, Hey, let's call this a limit list. And I don't wait for that limit list to happen anymore. I make it happen. I do join now. You know we we have a choice in every moment in how are we going to look at things in life? Are we going to see the you know, doom and gloom from a victim mindset? Or are we going to see it as an opportunity to grow? And so I think another thing that has served me well, that's helped me get from surviving to thriving and is having a growth mindset about every difficult experience I go through and positive experiences. But especially since we're talking about a cancer diagnosis that can feel like a scary event is seeing it as a growth opportunity. And I think for me personally, when I take on that mindset, it helps me to feel empowered, going through that experience. And it's not just going through a health scare, but it's applying that to anything in life, any setback. So I would say that's a huge takeaway is having a growth mindset through life, and then living and loving fully. And what does that mean to me, it means taking healthy risks. living fully let's talk about like in relationships, sometimes relationships can wound us, sometimes they can heal us. But what I do know is that we heal through relationship. And so it's learning to open your heart again, even if your hearts been broken. Having courage and faith that, you know, love is greater than fear, I like to say and I think another huge takeaway for me is knowing that a higher power has my back and I know that people listening to this have different belief systems. But I do believe in a higher power and I think there were just too many synchronistic events in my melanoma scare to not know that a higher power is already Straight in this and has my back. I mean, the fact that I was sent back to my same surgeon who did my lumpectomy in 2018, and my dermatologist had no idea we even knew each other. To me, that's just like, wow, okay, higher power is got my back here. And I think that helps my adrenals to be in a good place when I'm in that trusting place that helps my nervous system to calm down. Because quite frankly, a cancer diagnosis can be traumatic. And when we have trauma in the body, that's another thing I've learned is the importance of healing unaddressed trauma. I think trauma plays a big role in in a lot of cancer. I'm not saying it's the only factor, but it's one of many. And I like to say it's the number one toxin in the room. And so when we can go back and figure out what is that trauma that's stored in my body? And how can I turn towards it with loving compassion, and really integrate it moving forward. So I heal it. I think that's a huge takeaway as well, that can really keep us in a place of thriving,Melissa Deally:
and absolutely true, you know, our body stores, all of our experiences, The Good, the Bad, and the ugly. And we've been raised in many cases, not to show our emotions, you know, boys don't cry, and you're a big girl now, and don't bring your emotions to work and all these things. And so we haven't been taught how to process them and allow them to move through our body and be released, all we've been taught to do is stuffed them down. And over time, those stuffed down emotions do create toxicity. Absolutely. And toxicity is another factor, not only emotional toxicity, but actual chemical metal toxicities is another huge factor in cancers in particular, because of the inflammation it creates in the body. And because in the toxic world we live in now, our liver is getting overburdened, and can't necessarily get all of the toxins out of our body because there's just too many, and it's undernourished. And it's not even getting the right nutrients to be able to do that well. And so what it then does, because it's so smart, it doesn't want it to get into our bloodstream, and then have those toxins running all around our body. It stores them in our fat closets. And where our fat closets, our brain, our breasts in women, and then anywhere where we're carrying excess fat in our body, right. So think about that for a moment. Look at all the Alzheimer's and dementia we have.Melissa Deally:
Look at all the breast cancer we have, right? And just if toxins are being stored near other organs in your body, because you have extra weight, that can be a trigger for the cancer. So something else that you did between your two cancer episodes. Was you started detoxing. Yes.Anne Ferrier Crook:
And I'm so glad you brought this up, Melissa, because this detoxing, and we're not talking about a fad that you see on the internet where you drink a powder. And that's you know, we're talking about a real functional medicine detox, where it goes through the two stage or stages in the liver. And something that I took on and incorporated into my healing protocol, thanks to Melissa is doing this detoxing, and it has honestly been life changing for me. Because after breast cancer, I found out I had leaky gut and I had a bad case of Candida that had been in my gut for years. And you know, it was a huge blind spot. And it really just rebalancing my gut helped me clear up so many health issues in my life. But it's something that I do quarterly I would say about three times a year, just for maintenance. And it really helps me feel empowered and in charge that I'm keeping myself cancer free. Well, I can't say we're really ever cancer free, because we all have cancer in our body. But it's a matter of having an immune system that can take care of it. Right, exactly. So But what this does is it helps me keep a strong healthy immune system. And so that's been a really big piece of my healing as well.Melissa Deally:
And ensuring that the toxins aren't in your body festering and growing into cancer causing inflammation that triggers the cancer cells to grow. And with the strong immune system, your cancer killer cells, which we all have get to win that battle. So we'll never know the answer to this. But had you not been detoxing? Perhaps your melanoma scenario could have been a whole lot worse.Anne Ferrier Crook:
We never know but absolutely. And it just, you know, just the fact that I'd gone back and rebalance my gut with your support. I was probably able to ward off a much scarier situation. You know, I think that everything I've been doing For the past five years, prepared me to get the best outcome from that situation.Melissa Deally:
I love it. I love how you choose to be so proactive in your health. And of course, you teach it to others. So you walk your talk, but not everybody does that some people teach it and they don't walk the talk, but I love how you walk the talk. And also the fact that, you know, you saw them all, you scratched it a bit, and you went, you know, I better get it checked out. Again, you had a symptom from your body. And you then had it looked at you didn't wait eight months to go have it looked at, you saw it, and then you went and dealt with it right away. And that's the other thing that I think is really important in this kind of a diagnosis is that you do get checked out?Anne Ferrier Crook:
Well, that was another takeaway that I recall, sharing with my friends and family is the importance of being vigilant with your body. And when we are proactive about self care, we take good care of ourselves, it's a lot easier to catch something that feels a little off. And I would say a lot easier to trust your intuition. And I actually found both of my cancers. I found a lump when I had the stage one breast cancer, I also found the melanoma, which was a funny looking mold. And both times I thought, you know, I'm gonna get this checked out. And so I would just say if there's something off, trust your intuition, get it checked out. It's better to be safe than sorry. And it's amazing what a difference like six months can make, right? Absolutely. Yeah,Melissa Deally:
absolutely. And I know that from my own father, because he died when he was only 40, back in 1981. And his mother noticed a strange mole behind his ear in April of 1981. And he didn't get it checked out until November. And it was melanoma. Wow. And that was too long. Especially back in 1981. Right. And so when I called my skin cancer specialist, after my GP was trying to get me in for three, you know, for surgery and three days, and I appreciate she was trying to help, you know, get it out of my body and make sure I had a positive outcome. I just wasn't ready to be rushed into it that quickly. But I did ask him, How much time do I have? Because I know I don't have eight months. Do I have a week? Or do I need to do this on Monday morning, right? And his response was that, yes, I have a week. And in fact, the surgery needed to be done by a plastic surgeon because it was a large surgery, and he didn't recommend having it done by my family GP. And that because it was melanoma, I would be at the top of the list, but I wasn't gonna get in to see a plastic surgeon in the next week. Right? He said it would probably be about a month, and that would be fine. Okay. And so he didn't have a clear answer on what is the perfect amount of time, which I totally understand now, because every single one of us is different. And so there's no way any doctor could tell you that. You don't want to stuff around and wait eight months out of the fear of not wanting to know, which I believe is what my father did. Right. However, you also do have time to step back, breathe and get that secondAnne Ferrier Crook:
opinion. Yes, I'm so glad you mentioned that. And also, just the fact that you mentioned the family component made me think of epigenetics because I actually have a brother who had a stage one melanoma as well, about eight years ago. And you know, and so that does increase your risk factors. But it doesn't mean you're going to get a melanoma or because we are genes is just one factor. But we have power over our diet lifestyle, which is epigenetics, whether we turn on those genes or turn them off. So you just talking about your father made me think about the fact that I have a brother in my family and also the whole epigenetics conversation.Melissa Deally:
And that is such an empowering conversation. So I love that you brought that up. And I love to share that. Because how many of us have been told by a doctor, oh, you're gonna get breast cancer because your mother had it or your sister had it or your grandmother had. And even when I was in the corporate world, I didn't buy into that.Melissa Deally:
And something just kind of made me ask, well, it also has to start somewhere. There's something else. It's not just genetics. Because at the time, I was, you know, my doctor said, Well, you're over 40 You need to have your mammograms every year, then all of a sudden it was oh, there's not enough funding for that. Now you're having it every two years. And so now you're having it every three years, right. So it wasn't anything about actually looking after my health. It was all about lowering the costs because I'm in Canada and it's a publicly funded system and they were running out of money. So now they were running the lab tests less often to save money, right? And so my question was, but it has to start somewhere. There's something else that's also triggering this right? And then I went off, and I found thermography, and started doing that for myself.Melissa Deally:
And I've always just questioned some of these things that we get told. To just see, does it make sense for you? Right. And that's where epigenetics comes in, is that just because somebody else in your family had a disease doesn't mean you're going to get it. Because you can choose to live a different lifestyle, and choose to keep your inflammation at healthy levels in your body and not at a chronically inflamed state, so that your genes that predispose you to disease never have to get turned off?Anne Ferrier Crook:
Absolutely. And a big part of that is starting with your gut health, right?Melissa Deally:
It is, and it still blows my mind that Hippocrates said that 2000 plus years ago,Melissa Deally:
how did you know that? How did he know that? Then, when, you know, modern day science is only coming to prove that to be true now. Yet, he said, all health starts in the gut. He also said, all disease starts in the gut, right? So in other words, the health or disease in your gut is what is impacting your health outcomes.Anne Ferrier Crook:
And then 70% of our immune system is in the gut.Melissa Deally:
Exactly. And you can control the health of your gut. And that's why you're so proactive and take such powerful steps each and every day in your health, your physical health, your mental health, your your mindset, as well, that growth mindset that you talked about, because it is such an important piece of all of this. First of all, if you don't believe you can heal you, won't you? Why do you have to first believe it?Anne Ferrier Crook:
Absolutely. And one thing I'd like to add to that, and something that you and I love to do together is spend time outdoors. Yes, and just how important that is not only for your mindset and for your health, your emotional well being, but also for your gut health. Yeah, I was just featured on a nature summit where we were talking about the connection between nature and well being. And just spending time in the forest actually floods your gut microbiome with healthy bacteria. So spending time in nature is an amazing way to be proactive about your health.Melissa Deally:
It absolutely is all aspects of your health. So I absolutely love all of that. And thank you so much for coming back onto the show and sharing your positive experience through a second cancer journey, giving other people hope, so that they know they too, can do that as well. And I'm going to ask you again, because I do ask everybody this and maybe your answers changed. But what does don't wait for your wake up call mean to you.Anne Ferrier Crook:
It means to be proactive with your health. And it means to be vigilant with your body. If you see something that looks unusable. Trust your intuition. Take action. It also means to be grateful and to be in a healing states. So when we're in that, like I talked about before the rest and digest the healing state our body is healing. But when we're in fight flight, and we're in chronic stress that creates inflammation in the body, which leads to disease. So it's really just being aware of where's your setpoint day to day? And then knowing what are the things that you can draw on if you are stressed because we're all going to have stress, right? But what are the go to things that you can draw from for example, your community or going outside and spending time outdoors, or being mindful of your breath, or making sure you're sleeping. So these are things that I just really set the intention to incorporate into my life. So it's not just getting over the diagnosis, but it's actually a lifestyle moving forward. So that's what I would say,Melissa Deally:
I love that and so true. Let it become a lifestyle and you don't have to change everything at once. You can just do a little bit step by step towards improving that lifestyle. So how can people get ahold of you if they want to learn more work with you connect with you.Anne Ferrier Crook:
I'd love people to reach out so my website is the best place to reach me and that's integrativeradiance.com That's I V E radiance. R A D I A N C E . And on my website, there are different tabs at the top where they can, you know, see podcasts I've been featured on and listen to that they can learn about the breast connection, which is a community that I co founded with three other lovely women, my email addresses on there, they can read about my coaching packages. So there's a lot of great information on my website.Melissa Deally:
Fabulous and I've put that in the show notes as well. And the other thing you very kindly offered is a free gift to The audience and ebook if you want to share about that,Anne Ferrier Crook:
yes, so my ebook is a labor of love. It's called surviving to thriving after breast cancer a transformational roadmap. It's 24 pages chock full of knowledge and healing wisdom, it applies to most any health issue, if you haven't had breast cancer, it can absolutely apply to your life. It has about six different chapters, I'll just mention a few. There's health care, self care, which I like to say, there's the chapter about inflammation, what leads to a pro inflammatory lifestyle versus an anti inflammatory lifestyle. There's a whole section on emotional healing and self love. There's a section on the gut, my microbiome and the importance of gut health. There is a whole section on healing foods that are anti cancer. So it's just got a lot of great information, and it is my gift to you.Melissa Deally:
Thank you so much for sharing that with the audience. I really appreciate it. And as we wrap up here, is there any last message that you would like to leave with the audience,Anne Ferrier Crook:
I would like to just share a message of hope that if you're in the middle of a cancer crisis, you're feeling really down, you're feeling really overwhelmed, to know that there is support and know that there is you are going to overcome and transform this, it might feel really, I know, for me, I was in a place of overwhelm, especially the first time and it's very hard to see the light from the darkness. But to trust that this too shall pass. And so whatever you can do to find that support to lift up your spirits, to help you get through that crisis is the best thing to do at that time. Because sometimes we need a helping hand, right, we need other people to help lift us out of that darkness. But when you can find a community of people that understand what you're facing, because family and friends are great, but if they haven't been through a cancer scare, they might not understand the you know, just how complex going through such a diagnosis is. So find those people in your life that get you that can support you and help you become in that healing state. Because that's what's going to help you move forward. And know that you also have, you also have the power to take back control of your body and to be a part of that decision making process. So find your own advocate and yourself, but also find other people that can advocate for you.Melissa Deally:
And love that very, very good information, especially about advocating for yourself and finding others who can advocate for you. Thank you so much for coming on the show again today and sharing your wisdom, your story to give others hope. And I want to say thank you to the audience for tuning in each and every week and continuing to learn about your health choose to take proactive action in your health, and sharing these episodes with others in your life that can benefit from listening to them.Anne Ferrier Crook:
And Melissa, I want to thank you for the work you're doing with your podcasts. Don't wait for your wake up call and just the hope that you're sharing with listeners, and the knowledge and the wisdom that you're spreading is just so valuable to our community. So thank you for this podcast.Melissa Deally:
Thank you is absolutely my pleasure to do this and to share this because I just want the world to know that they can be empowered in their health. So thank you Anne