The full title of the book is Breast Cancer? Breast Health. The Wise Woman Way by Susun S. Weed, Ash Tree Publishing, Woodstock, New York, 1996
Susun S. Weed (and I still not sure if this just happens to be her real name or it is a pseudonym, I am leaning towards the latter) is a herbalist who uses the image of the wise woman, the healer in all of us (well, us women, but men can heal themselves too, I have no doubt). Since using herbs in my experience can alleviate a lot of women’s health issues, especially during pregnancy, her books have been of great help. I used her Wise Woman’s Childbearing Year when I was expecting and I have sent this particular book on breast health to a friend who was dancing with breast cancer as Susun Weed would call it a few years back and she found it helpful. The premise of the book is that there is a lot that a woman can do if she has cancer in her breasts, that she is not entirely powerless. The theme that strikes a cord with me regarding any health issue. There are herbs that can be used and there are healthy ways of living (including, she stresses, letting your breast roam freely (without the bra), doing your own breast check-ups in a pleasurable way (as opposed to the half a minute a doctor spends on them, that is usually far from pleasurable), avoidance of hormonal contraception, breastfeeding and not using chlorinated water and a thoughful diet). It is not the most evidence-based book around, that some more scientifically minded might find annoying. And the author is against scheduled mammograms, that might turn some off too. But for me health is the topic where intuition and spirituality are as important as evidence based (which Ms. Weed does present as well) information, so to the women like myself I strongly recommend this book on breast health and breast cancer. The book is divided into three parts: the first is for all women to understand your breasts better, the second is for women who are dancing with cancer and includes the discussions of different treatment methods, and the third is a section on herbal allies and assessing your breast cancer risk. And as I am sending off the book to a friend of mine who is experiencing breast cancer at the moment, I will be glad if you send a happy thought into her direction, even though you don’t know her, happy thoughts know their direction.