This holiday season is bittersweet for me. Learning of my sister's breast cancer has slowed down my yuletide hustle bustle. Thank God for internet shopping right? Despite the parties, concerts and sweet Baby Jesus story, I'm sad. Yesterday as I was grading papers in my basement office, a nervous anxiety was making me sick to my stomach. I walked upstairs to send her a text asking about an upcoming doctor appointment (cellular service doesn't work in the basement...I'm adjunct faculty). She immediately shot back that she was waiting in the doctors office right now as we speak (or text), hoping to get results from the tissue sample! Sibling psychosomatics. In my years of healthcare, helping rehab the breast cancer patients was always hard for me. It's such an embarrassing and humbling experience for a young chemo patient in need of occupational therapy. My sister may very well go through that, or she may respond keeping her strength to muddle through the chemo and radiation treatments with the help of her husband. 

This experience has reminded me of the power in meditation. Years ago I found relief in a painful time through a combination of yoga, meditation and my faith. Somehow the world was okay after I participated in the time of stillness in yoga class. Being part of a group or class in the meditation really brought a great energy. I sensed I was being healed. Completing class this morning brought me to a similar place. I can't say that I was holly jolly afterwards, though I was ready and at peace to face the world, despite my sister's dark situation hovering over my heart. 

Sometimes the fear of the unknown is worse than the actual circumstance. Before my sister's diagnosis, my family had arranged to spend part of Christmas vacation together with her in a mountain cabin. This little getaway has become much more poignant. Chemo doesn't start until after Christmas, so we will certainly enjoy our time without excess fatigue. Knowing what and with whom we will be able to spend next Christmas remains unknown. There will certainly be many hours of stillness and breathing in yoga and meditation for me as I accept this unknown. I hope you will join me as you accept your unknown too...

Tara Galles

Tara is the founder of YOGATHEA® inspiring others to "Breathe the Peace Which Transcends All Understanding - Mind + Body + Spirit” through Christian Yoga + Meditation DVDs, CDsInstructor Training Program, and Women's RetreatsTara currently resides in Kokomo, Indiana with her husband and 4 children where she practices Occupational Therapy and has made peace with the snow.