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Natural Awakenings National

Find Hope, Healing, Education & Relief At the Ocean Dreams Cancer Healing Center This December in Islamorada, Florida

Aug 31, 2022 10:23AM ● By Terry Sutton
Image of sunset over beach with Ocean Dreams Cancer Healing Center logo with text and palm trees over top

My name is Terry Sutton, founder of Ocean Dreams Cancer Healing Center, in Islamorada, Florida, where we are conducting a Healing and Wellness Retreat from December 5 through 9, 2022. The retreat gives patients with cancer or other diseases, along with their caregivers, the chance to experience hope, healing, education and relief from their day-to-day stress and the opportunity to learn how to improve the quality of their lives together.

Relax, Play, Learn & Heal

During this five-day, all-inclusive retreat, guests will explore healing modalities that complement their current medical protocol and discover how to treat the entire mind, body and spirit through breathing techniques, healthy nutrition, effective hydration, stretching, joint manipulation, massage, acupuncture, music therapy, reiki, grounding, reflexology, meditation, herbal medicine and more. There will be time to play in the water, go fishing or relax in the sun.

If you’re facing an illness and need relief and support for yourself and your caretaking team, I invite you to experience the blessing of a soothing, healing, fun and educational environment, which was borne from my own, recent, personal experience with and recovery from cancer.

My Personal Story

My personal experience is a journey that led me from the brink of death to founding Ocean Dreams Cancer Healing Center and sharing hope, healing, education, and relief with others, as my life’s mission.

Unexpected Diagnosis

In 2015 at the age of 51, I was told the words I never expected to hear from my doctor, "You have stage 4 colorectal cancer."

My family and I were shocked, devastated and confused. I looked and felt completely normal. I could physically do anything I wanted. We ate healthy as a family, and I exercised daily. I could only wonder if this news would be my death sentence.

Fighting To Live

During the next four years I had multiple surgeries to remove tumors in my colon/rectum, liver, and left lung. 

Additionally, I practiced and utilized various alternative therapies to help heal my entire body. Then in August of 2018 tests showed that the liver tumor continued to re-grow even after 3 earlier liver surgeries. There were no treatment options left. The doctors told me to get my affairs in order because I had about 6 months left to live, and I was facing chemotherapy for the rest of my shortened life.

I made the personal decision that chemotherapy was not the path I wanted to follow. Instead, I chose to see my Naturopathic Oncologist and stepped-up the naturopathic treatment options.

A Turn for The Worse – BYOL

Six months later, in March of 2019 the doctors found that my Vena Cava tumor was pushing on, and closing off, my hepatic vein, and was 70% closed. 

Again, I heard news what no one ever expects or wants to hear. The doctor again delivered the news, “Based on your current condition, you have less than 2 months to live.” 

He continued, “There is something we can do, namely a liver transplant. But there’s a catch. Since your liver is still functioning, you do not have a MELD score that qualifies you to be on the list for a cadaver liver. You must have a living-donor liver transplant. We have never offered this to a stage 4 cancer patient before, but it is likely your only option to live. Oh, and by the way, you must find your own liver donor."

BYOL - Bring your own liver, what a concept!

The First Beautiful Gift

I was in shock but, I had to ask, “What about the Vena Cava? That’s where my tumor is”.  The doctors replied, “Don’t worry. We’ll go to our spare parts refrigerator and get you a new one.”

Now, I was really shocked as I exclaimed, “What are you saying?”

“Well,” replied the doctors, “when people donate their organs, they also donate all of their veins and anything else that can be reused from their body to help others in need.”

What a beautiful Gift!

The Second Beautiful Gift

My question then turned to, “How would I find someone willing to give up a portion of their healthy liver?”

It didn't seem likely, or even possible, however, despite the odds, my family & friends put together a flyer and constructed a campaign to find a living liver donor.

We began reaching out to everyone we knew and people we didn’t know. A local television news station reached out to us and interviewed me and my wife to help spread the word.

Then a miracle came along. Her named is Danielle. She had just moved in the house next door and became friends with my wife while I was in the hospital. Danielle gave me part of her liver and an organ donor gave me part of a Vena Cava. That is why I am alive today.

A Renewed Mission in Life

After surgery and recovery, as I got my life back, I had a vision of dedicating my life to educating caregivers and their loved ones suffering with a cancer diagnosis.

My mission became clear. I would support others by sharing my story and the experience I gained with all the healing modalities I utilized in my recovery journey. We would create a safe, relaxing, and fun space to educate, soothe and support those that need it, at Ocean Dreams Cancer Healing Center.

What better place could there be to share this journey, than the beautiful healing waters of the Upper Florida Keys?

Gratitude is Flowing

It has been 3 years now since I received my Gift of Life, and I am grateful.

My family and I have been giving as much as we can to Ocean Dreams Healing Center.  Yes! We are taking “cancer” OUT of our name – and with this, we are making great progress and helping many.

But we can’t do this alone and we need your help!

Join us – Help Build the Dream

If you have any interest in being part of this amazing “dream” to help others dealing with disease, whether it be to donate, staff, volunteer, or as an attendee / participant, please reach out to us at, phone 305-393-9921, or email [email protected].

Ocean Dreams Cancer Healing Center is a fully approved 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. Our EIN is 84-3982122.

Our mission is to bring Hope, Healing, Education and Relief from the day-to-day stresses of dealing with disease to caregivers and their loved ones, so they can live a better quality of life as they search for a cure.

Please join us. Together we can HELP many!



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