By Miriam Raftery
April 1, 2009 (El Cajon)—The indomitable spirit of Charlavan Baker Hart shines like a beacon of hope in her new book, Tit Tatts: Life After Breast Cancer. The El Cajon artist has owned four galleries, authored the newspaper column “Pearls”, produced Internet radio programs, worked as an image consultant and reaped rewards as a professional poker player. But she faced life’s biggest gamble when she was diagnosed with cancer.
With characteristic artistic aplomb, Charlavan tattooed flowers to conceal the scars left by a modified radical mastectomy. Now she shares her survivor’s wit and wisdom with others.
Psychotherapist and designer Anita W. Horowitz observed, “Tit Tatts is an honest and compelling account of how Charlavan dealt with a potentially life threatening and disfiguring illness. Charlavan moves towards health utilizing conventional medicine, alternative medicine, humor and art…Laughter is always good medicine. Although she is very frank about how she struggled with her expectations and accommodations to the disease, she makes the reader feel pride in her feisty resilience.”
Dr. Mcihael Halls, Alvarado Institute in San Diego, also offered high praise. “After twenty-five years of practice and thousands of patients, Charlavan has finally written the book I have waited for. Not the medical text with the statistics, options and risks, but the personal side of the breast cancer experience. This is a must read for anyone at any stage of their journey, from disease to wellness.”
Below is an excerpt from her book, which is available currently on CDs and soon, in a print version. For more information on the author, visit www.charlavan.com. To order books or get more information on breast cancer, including tips such as skincare advice for cancer survivors, visit www.tittatts.net.
Charlavan’s column, Pearls (named for offering pearls of wisdom on what to wear with a black dress), debuts this month in East County Magazine. “It is all designed to let cancer patients see a lighter side of life,” writes the author, who prides herself on her irreverant sense of humor.