The/Studio: Introduce yourself. Tell our readers a little bit about who you are!
Nurse Crilly: I’m Patricia French Crilly, affectionately known to my colleagues and clients as Nurse Crilly. I have been a Registered Nurse since 1973. I was diagnosed with invasive ovarian and uterine cancer in 2009. Upon hearing the words, “You have cancer”, my first thought was Holy crap! Not the news I was expecting. Those three little yet devastatingly powerful words will change your life forever. They sure changed mine. For me, it was invasive ovarian cancer. My thoughts went from cancer to fear to pain to death in a nanosecond. I couldn’t think straight.
Suddenly, I was being set up for more scans…more bloodwork and I was scheduled for surgery in less than two weeks. My life was not my own anymore. I felt overwhelmed and out of control. I needed time to think but, really, how could I think clearly or rationally when I was frozen with fear? I needed a miracle. I found a bunch of miracles along my way…all the way back to WellBeing.”
I set my intention to be completely healed without the need for extensive cancer treatment and that is, miraculously, what happened.
The/Studio: What did you do after your courageous experience?
Nurse Crilly: After my extraordinary healing experience, I felt compelled to share my story and recently released my book called Extraordinary Healing, Ordinary Miracle: Choosing Wellbeing Over Fighting Cancer. It chronicles my journey back to wellness and deconstructs my healing process. I have been busy speaking to groups about my experience and sharing what I learned from it so I can offer help and hope to those diagnosed with cancer and their loved ones.
I also have a private practice as a Wellness Nurse Navigator assisting my clients in becoming the captain of their own wellness voyage by identifying and achieving their personal goals for healing the mind, body and spirit by bridging the gap between traditional medicine and the holistic healing arts.
The/Studio: What have you learned since your healing experience?
Nurse Crilly: The most significant thing that I learned from my healing experience, which greatly impacted my approach to my own WellBeing and that of my clients, is what I call the Healing Triad. There are three crucial elements that I believe are pivotal in reclaiming and maintaining your WellBeing. The first element is to overcome the fear of a serious diagnosis or even the threat of one. Fear will stop you in your tracks from taking any productive forward steps in your healing. The second is to change your belief that cancer leads to debilitation, pain and possibly death to a belief that your body is a magnificent self-healing organism. The third element is self-empowerment. Too often we give our power to the disease, the healthcare system and the fear-based concerns of friends and family. We must take back our power by being fully informed and to be a part of all decision making regarding our bodies and our WellBeing.
The/Studio: What about your book are you most proud of?
Nurse Crilly: In the short time that my book has been available, I have received many wonderful and heartwarming stories from nurses and family and friends of people with cancer.
The/Studio: What are some of the greatest challenges you face in your industry?
Nurse Crilly: The greatest challenge that I face is that I am proposing a paradigm shift in the way healthcare and society think about, talk about and treat cancer through my Healing Triad.
The/Studio: Where do you see health care in 10 years?
Nurse Crilly: I hope to be a part of a system that truly provides health care through disease prevention, education and actively supporting healthy lifestyles instead of focusing on disease management.
The/Studio: What type of legacy do you want to leave?
Nurse Crilly: That reclamation and maintenance of WellBeing is a collaborative partnership between the patient and their wellness team.
The/Studio: What is the story behind the custom product that you produced with The/Studio?
Nurse Crilly: The product I had made is called a “WellBeing Awareness” pin. The symbol was taken from the cover of my book which is the caduceus rising out of the lotus blossom. The lotus blooms clean and fragrant rising above the muddy water in which it is rooted. It embodies purity, enlightenment and faith. The caduceus has evolved to represent the emblem of modern medicine. Together, the marriage of these two symbols, that I call the “Loduceus” (pronounced low-due-sus) signify healing and WellBeing of the Mind, Body and Spirit. It is my hope that this symbol will offer an alternative to the multi-colored myriad of disease-of-the-month awareness ribbons for those who would prefer to keep their awareness on health and Wellbeing rather than being reminded of a disease.
The/Studio: What a beautiful symbol! How are you going to use your lapel pins?
Nurse Crilly: At present, I am distributing the pins to people who have attended my presentations about my book and the Healing Triad.
The/Studio: Do you have any upcoming events that our community members can attend?
Nurse Crilly: I design and conduct informative and inspiring workshops and seminars for the general public, corporations and health care professionals including: Celebrate Your WellBeing, Navigating the Shark Infested Waters of the Health Care System and Integrating CAM Modalities for Your Self-Care Regimen.
I am available for Keynote presentations as well as workshops and seminars tailored for the needs of your organization or group. For more information, Contact Nurse Crilly at NurseCrilly@msn.com or call 732-339-1414.
You can check in at www.ExtraordinaryHealingOrdinaryMiracle.com for an up to date listing.
My book is available at www.ExtraordinaryHealingOrdinaryMiracle.com and on Amazon.com.
“Patricia French Crilly – aka Nurse Crilly – has broken down her radical remission from invasive ovarian cancer into manageable steps that others can follow to aid in their own healing. She gives excellent advice on how to handle the intense fear that comes with a cancer diagnosis, and how to move into feeling empowered instead. Kudos, Nurse Crilly!”
Kelly Turner, PhD and Author of NY Times Bestseller: Radical Remission: Surviving Cancer Against All Odds
“Nurse Crilly is a feisty, funny, passionate and wise woman. I am truly inspired by Patty’s courage. Her determination and faith took her from a diagnosis fraught with fear (by anyone’s standard) to harnessing that fear and the power of intention, which enabled her to orchestrate a path to robust health and WellBeing. What a journey! Read this book. It will change your life!”
Maureen McGovern, Broadway, Concert and Recording Artist
“Pat has been on both sides of the hospital gown – as a nurse and as a patient. This book takes readers on a healing journey through her experiences, thought processes, and techniques – laced with her wonderful sense of humor – the amazing outcome of which couldn’t be denied by even the most traditional Western doctors.”
Christie Stratos, Editor Proof Positive
Thank you, Nurse Crilly, for sharing your courageous story of healing and recovery. We truly admire your work and appreciate everything you do as a nurse and as a healer. Happy National Nurses Week!