CNCHnet . . . The Textile Arts Webzine of the Conference of Northern California Handweavers

Ricochet Through Life

 How to Weave Your Way through a Brain Tumor

“So throw off the bow lines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the Trade Winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” Mark Twain

I have a brain tumor! A brain tumor? Really!?!?! How can this be?  These were my first thoughts as I read my diagnosis. The concept that some doctor was going to have to cut open my skull, move aside my brain and take out a tumor, was so huge I didn’t know how I would ever get a handle on it.
My brain tumor journey took me through the world of traditional medicine, which saved my life, and into the realm of alternative medicine, which gave me back my life. I learned not to “attack” or “beat” the tumor.  Instead, I made friends with the process and came out the other side stronger than I ever realized was possible.

My story within this story is the creativity I brought to the process.  I’m not sure how someone survives major medical events without creativity.  Think outside the box. I’ve always believed in the power of the brain and the use of visualization.

Visualize how the surgery will go. They told me the tumor was sticky and they’d have to pull it off nerves. I visualized it prior to surgery getting less and less sticky each day. I visualized the doctors smiling and talking about how much easier this surgery was than they thought it might be.

And I built a boat, in my mind.  You could be on my boat if you were positive, upbeat and sending good energy. I didn’t need to be holding hands and supporting people…energy vampires if you will.  I was going to need all my energy to survive this.  I did toss them life preservers but they weren’t allowed on my boat.

I came out of surgery and, in my hospital bed,  began designing hand woven rugs in my mind.  I was e-mailing the designs to myself from my phone 4 hours after getting settled in my hospital room.

Let the creative energy flow. I just wanted to know for sure that my brain could still design rugs.

One of the things I asked the universe for was please let me come out of my surgeries able to weave. I had only been weaving for 5 years at the time of my surgeries but it was my passion, my meditation.  I may be in a wheel chair for life, I may be this or that but, please, let me be able to weave.

Sure enough, 5 years later I’m still weaving.  I’m never without a design in my head. I can’t keep up with the designs I visualize.  I have monocular vision now so I weave with only one eye but I Weave, Every Day!Ricochet_Through_Lif_Cover_for_Kindle

Toni Seymour, a member of the Tamalpias Weaving Guild, not only has had a brain tumor, she has written a book about her journey through the experience of being diagnosed and her medical and surgical treatments AND how she managed to come through to the other side functional and stronger than she thought possible.  The book is available through Amazon.  See below. If you would like to contact Toni and/or see examples of her work, go to her web site.

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