Creating an outdoor space to foster healing
Joy Johnston, a seasoned belly dancer and busy mom who runs her own PR firm, was diagnosed with Stage III breast cancer in July 2014. Her cancer was aggressive; she had a bilateral mastectomy and many chemo and IV infusions that strained her physical and emotional health. During her time at St. Peter Hospital, Joy learned about the space that will soon become the Healing Garden.
Providence will soon begin construction to create a Healing Garden for patients, staff and visitors in the oncology unit at Providence St. Peter Hospital. The approximately 3,000-square-foot area is designed to enhance patients’ well-being, while demonstrating a commitment to spiritual and emotional health.
During treatment for cancer, patients often are admitted to the hospital many times, and they usually stay longer in the hospital than the average patient. The experience never fails to take an emotional toll.
“When I was in the hospital, I was in one of my most vulnerable times,” reflects Joy. “I was really scared and at that point had lost my hair. I just wasn’t feeling good.”
“To be able to go out in a space and just get some fresh air without the public seeing me would have been wonderful,” Joy says. “Being in this safe place on the oncology floor, where other patients and staff knew what I was going through, it would have meant so much to get that fresh air and feel connected to the rest of the world.”
Now in recovery, Joy has found a way to give back. She and more than 60 other dancers will perform in Dances of Hope and Healing – a benefit for Providence St. Peter Hospital’s Healing Garden. (See sidebar).
The Healing Garden is scheduled to open in late August. Donations for the Healing Garden are being accepted, and naming opportunities are available.
>Make a gift
>To discuss naming opportunities, contact the Foundation at (360) 493-7981 or by email.