I am an RN as well as a two-time survivor of breast cancer.
As a nurse, I knew what to expect physically when I had my mastectomy back in 1996. However, nobody prepared me for the ongoing emotional consequences. No referral to a therapist or support group was offered, nor did I have continuing support from my surgeon or oncologist. Nothing. You see, I was “cured.” That fact that I had no right breast, no sensation, and had lost all sense of my womanhood…none of that was addressed. I was on my own, adrift, with a husband who was much less than supportive.
How I wish Cancer Harbors had existed back then! What a difference it would have made in my life, in my deepest sense of who I was as a woman.
The affordability of the services Cancer Harbors offers means they will be widely available to all patients who have cancer. Alene Nitzky, Ph.D, RN, is offering comprehensive, on-going support and services for the issues all cancer survivors face. Her contribution to cancer survivorship care needs is not only rare, but unprecedented.
Thank you, Alene, on behalf of cancer survivors everywhere.Melissa Brown, RNPensacola, FL
A cancer patient has been assailed with so much, both physically and emotionally, now there is something you can do for them that will help them re-align their life and purpose… I have worked with Alene in the breast cancer and breast reconstruction community. She works with passion, knowledge of the subject and respect for the patient. I endorse her work and hope that you will consider the gift of her services because it is true, “Living is so much more than surviving”.Terri CouteeEducator, patient advocate, and survivor. Owner & Founder of DIEP C Journey.
- John J GarnandAuthor of Cancer Caregiver Roles: What You Need To Know
I am a competitive ultra-runner and was recently diagnosed with thyroid issues. I connected with Alene via phone/email and was instantly impressed. Unlike standard medicine that focuses on the numbers and not the individual, Alene has been a huge advocate of mine, understands my point of view, and my desire to return to my athletic endeavors and higher quality of life. She has educated and explained in further detail my medical issues (which the docs didn’t do) and has helped me navigate through the health care system, and encourages me to be persistent with my health care needs. It’s a huge benefit to have Alene working with me, and I am truly blessed to have someone that cares as much about my health as I do.A.M., Denver, CO
Alene’s expertise and caring are remarkable. She solved or greatly helped with major issues I experienced following thyroid cancer surgery, removal of 59 lymph nodes, and radiation, including:
- -Lymphedema of head, neck and shoulder which had one side of my face almost twice the size of the other. It’s now nearly normal.
- -Neuropathy of my head, neck and shoulder. Acupressure greatly helps.
- -Vitamin D deficiency causing debilitating joint pain. She researched this, and I followed up with my primary care doctor who diagnosed what Alene thought it could be.
I credit the great physicians for saving my life; I credit Alene for making life much more normal, livable, and far less painful.M.J.K., Fort Collins, CO
Once my cancer treatment was completed I expected to immediately return to normal only to find my health was at a low point as was my self- confidence. My medical team had successfully completed their work. I was ready to say good-by to them. Yet, I was anxious about my future. Everything seemed confusing and overwhelming.
I was relieved to have survived surgery, chemotherapy and radiation but scared and unsure about who I was in the wake of the treatment. I was ready to get on with my life but I had lingering questions about recovery. I had just faced a terrifying disease, but was unsure how much it may have changed my life. The one thing I knew was that I did not want to be forever defined by the illness.
Alene’s services meet my needs for addressing wellness and recovery. Alene specializes in teaching gentle, relaxing exercises that help heal and help reduce residual stress. She also brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to her work.
She offers current information on a variety of health-related topics that I have questions or concerns about. She has at her finger tips the names of other service providers and resources who are available to help as well. Alene reminds me to appreciate the joys in life, of walking, talking, stretching, and laughing. With her I do not dwell on the past but focus on getting better.
Alene gives me hope and strength. I never want to experience a cancer diagnosis again but there are no guarantees. It is reassuring for me to know that Alene is available to support me to meet any challenges I might face. She will be there to encourage me in living my life to its fullest.J.L., Fort Collins, CO
After a year of surgeries, chemo, and radiation treatments, I celebrated this accomplishment expecting to pop back into my healthy pre-cancer self! That was my expectation, but not my reality. During treatment, focus and energy was consumed on getting through each day. Following treatment, medication would continue at least five more years. I wasn’t prepared to deal with the ongoing fatigue, weight gain from steroids and meds, and excessive hot flashes, and muscle and joint aches. I remember feeling slight relief and validation from books or articles I read confirming the ongoing effects I was experiencing. These were overwhelming for me. I began searching for help. Months later, I read about Alene Nitzky and Sunspirit Wellness through the Business Profile in STYLE magazine. Since my initial consultation with Alene, I have been greatly supported and I am relieved that with her professional guidance, I am on the path to reclaiming my health and my life again.D. G., Loveland, CO
Alene was there for me when I needed motivation to really get moving. She has helped me along my path to health and fitness for the past three years and during that time I have made significant strides not only physically but mentally. When I need advice on advancements to my running routine Alene is the only person I trust for advice. When I encounter set-backs she is there to give me support and guidance. Without her help I know I would not be where I am today and I am forever grateful.S. A., Fort Collins
Alene helped with my immediate health needs in union with my physical, spiritual and emotional issues. Her approach is a unique blend of inspiration and compassion~combining her expertise as a oncology nurse, in the workings of the human body, as a coach and healer, enabled me to embark through a personal transformation after cancer.
I am deeply grateful for the way you shared your passion and purpose.K.B., Fort Collins, CO