Ahh! Oncology massage!

Recently massage therapists from Cancer Family Care shared free chair massages to an event at the Cancer Support Community. That's me getting the kinks out of my neck!

I have always loved a good massage. When I was single, I’d get one every month. Once I got married and had my daughter, they became a luxury I’d receive as birthday and holiday presents.

Since I was diagnosed with cancer, I’ve been a bit nervous about a well-meaning practitioner “rubbing me the wrong way,” (excuse the pun). I have some lymphedema and have always been afraid of making that worse, and I still have a port, which can be tender.

There is a wonderful organization here in Cincinnati, Cancer Family Care, that offers half-priced massage, as well as healing touch, for cancer survivors. I have been incredibly blessed to get regular massages by my wonderful massage therapist Cheryl Smith, LMT, who is certified in oncology massage. A survivor herself, she gives me more than a massage; I consider her a friend who I can share my feelings with, as well as my aches and pains. She knew her stuff and showed interest in me as a whole person, not just client.

I considered it more than a treat; it was a treatment … something that will contribute to my survival. According to Cheryl’s brochure, some of the benefits of oncology massage include:

  • Reduced stress
  • Pain relief
  • Minimized side effects of chemotherapy and radiation
  • Restored energy/reduced fatigue
  • Boosted immune system
  • Enhanced circulation and oxygen
  • Removal of toxins from body
  • Feeling of peace and well-being
  • Reconnection of body, mind and spirit

I am extremely grateful for Cancer Family Care for providing this service. They also hold a day every year for cancer surivors’ children called Camp Courage. Chrissy went when I was first diagnosed had a wonderful time, doing nature hikes, crafts and throwing eggs against a wall to release anger. I could use that myself some days! As you can see by this photo, they even had a face painting artist on hand.

I encourage surviors and family members who lives in the Cincinnati area to take advantage of Cancer Family Care’s services. And better yet, support them with a donation and check out their website. If you don’t live in the area, go to the Society for Oncology Massage’s website to find an oncology massage therapist near you.






  1. diane orner
    Apr 10, 2014

    she is a God send indeed!

  2. Facing Cancer
    Apr 10, 2014

    Sounds quite lovley. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy :) ~Catherine

  3. tamilb
    Apr 10, 2014

    So glad you are benefiting from it Carole!

  4. Carole
    Apr 10, 2014

    I want to thank you for telling me about the massage through Cancer Family Care. I did not know this program existed and I loved it! They also sponsor Healing Touch sessions which is also a wonderful program. That has been a Godsend for me! Thank you for getting the word out about these helpful programs for patients. I don’t think many people know what’s out there in the community to help them to get stronger on their cancer journey!

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