Here are the words Lucie D’Alessandro uses to describe her healing journey, one year after being diagnosed with breast cancer:
Awakening. Amazing. Wild.
These words are not generally associated with cancer.
Lucie has taken a diagnosis and turned it into a permission slip. She’s proof of what it is to skip on surviving and head straight to thriving by taking responsibility for her wellness. Her journey goes way beyond the physical; she practices what she calls toes to soul healing : a dedicated regime of fierce self-love and scrupulous self-care. And she’s sharing what she’s learning, in beautiful posts and intimate interviews, to aid others in their own exploration of healing naturally.
Lucie is unfurling big time. If you squint you might see her in your minds’ eye, twirling and spiraling upward as she revels in the joy of living life on her own terms. She’s in right relationship with her unfurling : powered by courage and self-love, guided by what’s calling her, and willing to do the work that keeps her in motion.
It has been delightful and enlightening, getting to know Lucie over the past several months. I’m watching her step more powerfully into who she’s becoming as she opens her heart even wider. She contributes deep love and compassion to an evolving conversation about wellness and healing, and her words lift us up whatever we’re battling.
Lucie is an inspiration, a muse, and a mouthpiece for the divine. Lean in close, read her words and soak it in.
What’s unfurling in me right now?
Every last smidge of me. It’s exciting. And scary.
The past year has been a wild and amazing ride, although it started off as a seemingly scary journey – I was diagnosed with breast cancer a few weeks before my thirty second birthday [which came on the heels of over three years of infertility - that was incredibly difficult in itself]. Since the day of my diagnosis I’ve been in a constant state of transformation that’s opening up every aspect of my life for inspection, clarification and healing. I truly love my life now more than I ever have, but when I say it’s been wild, I mean WILD! Amazing + curious. Exhausting + saturated with serene happiness. Full of sadness, frustration + fluidity and sweet, sweet synchronicity. And sometimes it’s all of this on the same day. I need a lot of sleep…
Basically I realized how tired I was of playing out the same old limiting stories that kept me from living the creative, love-filled, fulfilled life of abundance that I knew, however distantly, could be my reality. So, with cancer as my catalyst, I decided to change. Actually, it was almost as if I didn’t have a choice; I was propelled upward and outward [with much hard work on my part].
:: In choosing to heal naturally from cancer, I learned to love my body first. Food was an easy in, a simple way to love and respect myself by loading up on fresh veggie juices and organic whole foods. Nourishing my body became a way of loving my body. Once I felt my physical well-being was being taken care of [I was and still am on an intense two-year natural cancer therapy], I had more head space to tackle other parts of healing.
:: I rewired my mind and replaced my ‘not enoughs’ and ‘cannots’ with ‘yes’ and ‘why not?’. I totally underestimated the power of affirmations prior to cancer: they are how I began to love and accept all of myself. Feeling that I was whole and complete, cancer and all, was a revelation. So beautiful.
:: Releasing fear about … everything … was key. Just understanding that fear is simply a projection of a future event that hasn’t happened has allowed me to focus in on how and what I’m doing right now, which is where change occurs. And living. My control freak tendencies are down 95%! It’s so nice.
:: Right now I’m quietly unfurling my calling… listening in to what it is, and how it’s going to take form. Something to do with writing, and speaking, and inspiring people to live deeply and fully. And there’s food, it’s always to do with food with me.
This constant state of unfurling is only now feeling like it’s slowing down – or just heading in a different direction, maybe?
Who or what are showing up as my allies in this unfurling?
My beautiful husband and family have been behind me all the way, ready to challenge me when I needed it, even if I didn’t want it, or to give me space, and always love. They’re amazing.
A big crew of wonderful women I’ve found online [like you Amy, wink wink!] have been vital in providing me with inspiration, guidance, roadmaps to living intentionally so I could figure out what worked for me, and their stories of how they live and love and be. Their vulnerability has allowed me to open myself up more. Their luminosity has allowed me to shine brighter.
My greatest ally is myself, although writing that I realize it sounds slightly more pompous than I mean it. After a lifetime of self doubt and procrastination, it’s beautiful to realize that my inner voice is infinitely stronger and wiser, more present and accessible than I ever realized, and I trust her now. I trust myself, or I try my hardest to.
How do I get out of my own way?
For me it’s about letting go of my basic fear that I’m not good enough – which is hard, especially as a chronic over-thinker and recovering perfectionist. The lovely bit is that the more I let go, the easier it gets, hallelujah.
I do a combination of things to shush my mind, because when that happens my life flows deliciously:
:: Go for long walks around our snaking shoreline, with a stop to sit at the end of a little weathered smooth-and-silver wooden pier, to swing my legs and watch the seagulls: total presence. Today I got completely lost in watching two dogs play fetch, with lots of glorious tale wagging and woofing.
:: Do yoga and qi gong, much less regularly than I’d like.
:: Do ‘it’ anyway – ignore doubt [and dread and hellish discomfort] and hit publish, or reach out to that person.
:: Feel my feelings. That might sound obvious, but I’ve spent the majority of my life squishing down my feelings so they keep revisiting me, and revisiting me, and revisiting me – and blocking me. Now, even if it seems scary, I just sit and breathe through the fear/frustration/loneliness/whatever. It’s amazing how powerful facing an emotion is, and how that can clear my path.
:: Love myself and trust that I might just be as great as I dream I am.
What’s the soundtrack?
Too often the whirring of my mind, but when that gets old, which happens pretty quickly, I crank up Scandinavian power metal as loud as my headphones can go. In more mellow moments, Incubus or Dave Matthews. [All of which are accompanied by the sound of my sweet pup, Rupert, snoring.]
Who am I becoming?
100% Lucie. Yikes! Yay!
Lucie is a wellness warrior, writer and founder of DelveSpot, an online gathering place for healing. She blogs and conducts weekly interviews, as well as offering workshops and retreats. Find out more or say hello to Lucie here.
Others in the Unfurling Series
- Abby Kerr
- Amy Kessel
- Samantha Reynolds
- Jennifer Verharen
- Jamie Ridler
- Lindsey Mead
- Bridget Pilloud
- Tara Gentile
- Lynn Baldwin-Rhoades
- Amy Oscar
- Anna Guest-Jelley
- Molly Mahar
- Tanya Geisler
- Rachel Cole
- Amanda Farough
- Dyana Valentine
- Andrea Olson
- Julie Daley
- Ronna Detrick
- Jennifer Louden
- Kate Courageous
Registration for September’s Unfurling : The Journey is now open!
Come in to my virtual living room and join the circle of women who have said Yes to wholeheartedly embracing what’s unfurling in them. In this small group program we’ll explore how to cultivate and nourish your relationship with what’s coming alive for you right now: whether in your creative realm, your career, your spirituality, your relationship or your wellness.
This circle is for you if you want the synergistic intimacy of a small group as you harness the power of your unfurling. We’ll deep dive into an exploration of who you’re becoming, via facilitated discussion, guided personal journeying, 1:1 coaching, group exercises and partner work.
Unfurling is NOT about self-improvement or initiating growth. It’s working with what happens naturally when we embrace what’s calling us and allow ourselves to step into the next chapter of our lives. The one on thriving.
Check out the details here. Early registration ends August 30!