In 1996 Kerrie Hamner was shocked to learn that a harmless-looking mole on her left thigh was actually melanoma. After surgery to remove a large area around the melanoma, the doctor assured Kerrie that she was now cancer-free. But two years later, when she was just 25 years old, Kerrie learned that the cancer was back and had probably spread throughout her entire body. For the next three months, Kerrie underwent intensive bio-chemotherapy treatment that ultimately wiped out the cancer, but also left her physically debilitated.
But sometimes adversity brings with it the most incredible revelations. During the treatment Kerrie watched her body deteriorate, but inside her heart, mind and soul were growing and opening in leaps and bounds. Kerrie was being prepared to make what would be a life-changing discovery for her – yoga.
After her treatment ended, Kerrie took a yoga class and began practicing yoga at home. Still incredibly weak, Kerrie was only able to practice yoga for five minutes a day. But she stuck with it and gradually got stronger. Soon Kerrie was strong enough to take an Ashtanga class at Yoga Yoga in Austin, Texas, where she especially relished the after-class inspirational readings about the eternal nature of our souls. Kerrie continued her rapid progress and became an instructor at Yoga Yoga.
Kerrie credits yoga with bringing numerous benefits into her life, such as awareness and control of the breath, which helped her to control her state of mind and stay in the present moment. Yoga brought out Kerrie’s innate strength and self-discipline, both mentally and physically, and helped to make her whole again. Yoga has been a tremendous healing light in Kerrie’s life, one that she would never have found had it not been for the cancer.
Kerrie recently passed an important milestone – cancer-free for five years! She willingly shares her experiences with other cancer patients, offering healing words of hope and encouraging them to stay positive. Kerrie’s inspiring story reminds us that devastating circumstances can actually be the catalyst for profound and positive changes in our lives.
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