In January 2010, as a result of my annual mammogram, I was diagnosed with breast cancer in both breasts. It was a punch in the gut – no history of cancer in my family, I was not conducting a lifestyle that seemed to be cancer-inviting, why me? I was going to die – in hindsight, a normal initial reaction before knowing the extent of the cancer or the treatments and support that was available to me.

My depression – actually the depression of my husband and I – lasted for about a week. Our daughter, Sharyn, knew of Danielle’s program and suggested a consultation.  It was at that stage that my husband and I decided to “take the bull by the horns” and be proactive utilizing an integrative approach to fighting this disease – both western and eastern methodologies would be employed.  The final diagnosis revealed that two lumpectomies would be performed followed by both brachytherapy and conventional radiation with five years of hormonal treatment.

With Danielle’s guidance, we embarked on an immediate implementation of the dk-8 program ahead of any medical treatments or challenges, primarily to set up my body to be better able to handle the pain and stresses to come.

We first tackled the nutritional end:  Danielle showed us how being healthy can also be delicious and transformed our kitchen into the dk-8 kitchen that would ensure our success. My husband joined me in this change and the result was win-win for both of us – the weight rolled off of him and we both felt more energetic, thus helping reverse any initial depression. Although I regularly exercised, Danielle suggested that yoga would be a better stress reliever and identified a suitable yoga studio. Yoga helped immediately, I slept better and the anxiety left completely.  I continue with it 3 times a week.

I could still not fathom why cancer attacked me. Could it have been some long-held issues with other family members which unconsciously put my body into dis-ease? In fact, Danielle helped isolate this possible causality and resolved these 30-year hostilities immediately – what a feeling of relief!

The dk-8 program has helped immensely. I felt so good after each of the surgeries that I did not have to take any pain medication. There were none of the normal side effects during the radiation, we both feel great and the weekly coaching sessions kept us both on track.  Most importantly, we have an established infrastructure to ensure our new lifestyle.

This success is due to the following factors: proper nutrition; yoga; a positive attitude; an ongoing sense of humor; starting the program before surgery; and the instrumental team effort with dk-8 in facing down the enemy.

Thank you Danielle – we are very grateful.

Elaine and Harry Stuart

Judith after walk

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in June 2007.  My treatment included a lumpectomy on June 30th followed by 7 months of chemotherapy and then 38 rounds of IMRT Radiation Therapy over 3 months.  Eight weeks after treatment, while working full-time, I completed the Susan B. Komen 5K Race for the Cure in Central Park (NYC) and raised over $3,000 for breast cancer research.

While I was grateful for the treatment available, I had heard many horror stories and was terrified of the side effects.  The cumulative effects of chemotherapy, I was told, were going to be the toughest to get through physically, mentally, and emotionally.

Upon diagnosis, Danielle suggested an integrative approach to treatment.  She said that combining her three prong approach to my treatment schedule would keep side effects to a minimum, keep my energy stable, and create an easier path for me to endure the chemotherapy.  I didn’t listen.  I trusted my team of doctors and felt that as long as I followed their instructions exactly, I would be OK.

My oncologist and I worked through many challenges at the beginning of treatment: the type of chemo medication was switched because of my harsh reactions to the first administration.  Anti-nausea meds made me even more nauseous.  The pain-killers didn’t work fast enough or effective enough.  Anti-depressants were prescribed, but I was already taking valium for my nerves, and was reluctant to take both.  Chemotherapy brought me to a very dark place.  I was weakened on so many levels, I wondered if I’d ever get through this ordeal and if I did, would I ever have the energy I enjoyed prior to diagnosis….

Two months into treatment, after all the initial challenges, I agreed to start with Danielle’s program.  She explained that my dk-8 program would consist of nutritional guidelines, yoga therapy and Reconnective Healing sessions.  After one Reconnective Healing session, I experienced a relaxation so profound that I dropped the valium and never took it again.  I found immediate relief from the nausea with miso soup.  Yoga therapy sessions were three times per week – I experienced a gradual relief from the bone pain and renewed energy.  It was an amazing balancing act, but Danielle guided me through it, every step of the way, and worked beautifully with my team of doctors.

Within 30 days, I was a completely different person.  I had taken a leave from work to get through this ordeal.  Instead of crying and isolating myself out of pain and fear, Danielle insisted that I try new activities.  In the middle of chemotherapy, I started Italian lessons and dance lessons – two things I always wanted to do, but never had the time to fit into my schedule.  Danielle also prescribed one comedy film per night before bed – laughter’s the best medicine.  Yes, I still lost my hair.  Yes, I stayed out on leave.  Yes, there were times when things got challenging.  But there were also times when I actually forgot I was under chemotherapy!  I couldn’t believe it!

After chemotherapy was over, I had a break for a few weeks before radiation.  In those four weeks, I started feeling so much better that I returned to work full-time. Unfortunately, I was a little too ambitious and needed to scale back to a part-time schedule shortly after radiation started.  However, by the time radiation was complete, I was back at work full-time.

I will never forget my last appointment with my oncologist after completing radiation.  He went through everything with me, put my chart down, and asked how I was able to get through treatment without any periphery medications.  After all the initial challenges we faced, he was amazed at how I dropped all the other medications, almost overnight. I explained what Danielle had done for me and he simply smiled and congratulated me on being his first patient, in his 35 years of practice, to go through an entire treatment program without any medication.  When I told him I signed up for the 5K Race for The Cure and was looking forward to it in eight weeks, he smiled and assured me I wouldn’t have any challenges completing it.  And I didn’t!

Despite my initial reservations, I’m so grateful that I was able to take an integrative approach for my breast cancer treatment.  The doctors helped me fight the cancer, but the physical, emotional, and spiritual support I got with dk-8 helped me heal completely and not have any residual conditions like heart damage, which is so prevalent amongst survivors.

My prayer is that every person facing cancer treatment can have the support of dk-8 to ensure a complete and total healing.  The tools are so comprehensive.  Not only do I have a new lease on life, but I have a new lifestyle to ensure my wellness forever!

-Judith Kirk