New book “Coloring through Cancer” combines adult coloring with positive affirmations to help cancer patients relax and recover
Coloring book author, Sarah Renae Clark combines the power of positive thinking and creativity to help cancer patients during and after treatment through her new adult coloring book, “Coloring Through Cancer.”
Clark, a professional illustrator with a background in pastoral care, admits she wasn’t prepared for the challenges and brutality of cancer. “I had no idea how much stress and anxiety could be brought on by cancer until I saw it first hand with Mom.” said Clark, recalling when her mom was diagnosed with stage 3 invasive ductal carcinoma in 2005 and underwent surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy, followed by stage 4 breast carcinoma with bone metastasis in 2008 and new bone metastasis in 2014. “At the time, she wasn’t given any advice on how to relax or cope on a day-to-day basis and some days were overwhelming for her.”
In 2016, cancer patients are turning to coloring books to relax, relieve stress and get through treatment. Clinical psychologist, Dr. Ben Michaelis Ph.D., endorses the power of coloring, noting that they have appeared to have reduced both the mental and physical distress of cancer treatment. Michaelis observed that patients were more relaxed, more positive, and complained far less of the physical side effects of treatment.
Dr. Joel Pearson, a brain scientist at the University of New South Wales in Australia also argues that “concentrating on coloring an image may facilitate the replacement of negative thoughts and images with pleasant ones”, providing further therapeutic advantages.
The online community have expressed great enthusiasm and support for the book, which has given them to opportunity to share how cancer has touched their life either personally or through family or friends:
Lisa, one of the attendees at the book’s launch commented “I know all will find comfort in this. I have lost many to the battle… This book will be helpful for those going through cancer to help pass time through treatments and the after effects… I wish I had discovered adult coloring when my daughter was going through this as it would have been helpful for us both to have something to do to pass the time during her chemo treatments, just to keep our minds going on something positive and not dwell on what we were there for.”
“The messages on the pages for your new book brought tears to my eyes” said a mother, whose son conquered cancer earlier this year.
Clark was inspired to create this book for her own mom as she continued on her journey through cancer in 2016. “I gave mom some coloring books to take with her to her most recent treatment, and she loved them. I wanted to give her something that would not just relax her, but also encourage her to stay positive.”
Patients are offered coloring supplies and pages from adult coloring books to help ease stress during treatment at cancer centers such as the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center, however there are almost no books designed specifically for this growing segment of the community. Clark has committed to assisting selected cancer support groups and treatment centers with this resource free of charge.
“Coloring through Cancer” will be available early July 2016. Find out more: