Submitted by Cosmina Grigore
At Imunis, the belief is that a woman is a powerhouse. She rises constantly to her truths. We believe that as a woman heals herself, she becomes a healing woman. Womanhood after cancer is possible, it is proof that women are powerhouses. That women can rise together and as they do, they generate a force so beautiful, so powerful it makes them undeniable.
Womanhood after cancer is the Imunis legacy. A unique program designed to help women in Romania see themselves differently, experience themselves as powerful, wise, kind, creative, delicate, wild, and balanced, even after having lost key attributes of womanhood (hair, breast(s), uterus etc.). Through this program – Womanhood after cancer – we aim to lead the future generations of Romanian women diagnosed with cancer towards a new way of approaching themselves, and their lifestyles after cancer. One where women are thriving after cancer. Leading women to their truths: the healing power of women coming together, the healing power of togetherness, the healing power of healing women.
Womanhood after cancer is a unique signature program at Imunis. It was designed and implemented by Cosmina Grigore, President of Imunis Association. She is also a breast cancer thriver, being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013 and from there she started a “revolution” in Romania.
In 2015 she created her first event about sensuality and sexuality after cancer, raising awareness about the evolution of a woman’s sensuality and sexuality after cancer treatments. Although she lost her left breast to mastectomy she tattooed “My Legacy” under the mastectomy and set out to create her legacy after cancer led by her unique approach to lifestyle after cancer. She created Imunis – the first NGO in Romania aiming at helping women create themselves a lifestyle after cancer that can hold space for their healing journey.
In 2016, Cosmina received an award for her approach, for having built something different: “Woman of the Year” for “Social Initiative”. This was the year Imunis was built because Cosmina wanted to continue building her legacy also. She became the first patient in Romania to become a Patient Coach and she worked with cancer patients with all types of cancer, both men and women, children, and adults. She learned a lot through her body of work, and as a result programs at Imunis have been refined constantly.
Womanhood after cancer was birthed through Cosmina’s own journey after cancer. As she was leading herself, she became a leader for other women that started following her and attract to her approach and her vision.
In 2017, the awareness campaign “Womanhood after cancer” was launched talking about the fact that as a woman heals her emotions, her mind, her body she creates a ripple effect that generates better relationships, better lifestyle, better lifestyle contexts for everyone. Cosmina talked about the fact that as she heals herself, a woman becomes a leader for healing. And so, she returns to her true nature – a healer of the heart.
In 2021 – after having worked with women as Patient Coach – Cosmina officially launched the program Womanhood after Cancer. It was one of the best received programs at Imunis, and because the feedback was so good, she delivered 3 editions in 2021 working with 80 women that have undertaken the program, saying yes to this visionary approach.
In 2022, it was decided to upgrade the program and make it an experiential one. Therefore, in 2022 the program had 5 online masterclasses aiming at helping women rethink their womanhood after cancer and tap into their personal power so that they can rewrite their story after cancer in alignment to their authenticity. Furthermore, to support the mental shift, during the 3 months the program was delivered, then an event was created for the 50 women that had signed up for the 2022 edition, different events that would help them experience themselves in ways that can support their womanhood and their return to themselves.
This is how the program became experiential. In the 3-month course, women in the Womanhood after cancer program undertook pole dance lessons, mindfulness lessons, twerk lessons, make-up class, floral design lessons and many more. To celebrate their devotion to themselves, a special photoshoot was created with designer dresses so that women could see themselves as beautiful and sensual as they are. Moreover, at the end of the program, a retreat was established to help them sit in togetherness and feel each other’s beautiful hearts. To celebrate their strength, in October 2022, Imunis will hold an exposition where 15 of the women that have undertaken the program in 2022 will have their portraits celebrated in this beautiful event. The event is to be held at Cervantes Institute in Bucharest as the program is supported by kind and powerful partners.
“The feedback is amazing. As we come together, we are building Imunis’s legacy. As women are being diagnosed with breast cancer in Romania and even other types of cancer, they reach out and find a community so strong, so beautiful that they can be hugged tight and supported on their journey”.
It has been Cosmina’s vision, it has been her dream. And she keeps building it because she wants everyone to understand that as we heal women’s hearts, as we allow women to rise to their true nature, we can heal the world.
Cosmina says that: “Even if I might not live to see the ripple effect of what I am building, I keep building. I keep refining. I trust with all my heart that cancer has a message for us and that when we open ourselves to learning to understand it, something else can be built. A new way. A new paradigm after cancer.”.
Photo credit: Cosmina Grigore