Hello! I’m Kara. I was first introduced to breast cancer rehabilitation as an occupational therapy student. My clinical instructor specialized in breast cancer rehab and lymphedema. I immediately felt a connection to this population. It was amazing to see the strength and simultaneous vulnerability of these women and men battling breast cancer. Also, it became clear to me early on that there was a gap in care for breast cancer patients.
So many people coming to therapy could have avoided or greatly reduced the symptoms they were experiencing of seromas, lymphedema, deconditioning, significant restrictions in arm movement, and the list goes on if they would have been provided education proactively. I really loved how OT could empower patients and their family to take control of symptoms they were experiencing. Right away I knew that I wanted to focus on breast cancer rehabilitation in my career.
Fast forward to 2020. My husband and I were in Thailand for the adoption of our daughter when the world shut down. Her visa was expedited, and we were rushed out of the country as the US went into lockdown. Like most other people in 2020, our world became very small as we quarantined. The silver lining came as a lot of quality time for us to bond as a family of three. At first it felt overwhelming for our life to be so small and have some much time as just the three of us but watching our beautiful little girl blossom into a strong, sassy two-year-old made it all worthwhile. It was scary and beautiful and messy all at the same time.
Exactly one year later we welcomed a sweet baby boy who at 3 days old we found out had a severe congenital heart defect. This shook all 3 of our worlds in the scariest way. Everything we spent the last year building in the stability of our family unit was put to the test. Finding out about our son’s heart condition was absolutely terrifying and resulted with us spending much of the next few months at the hospital. That meant one parent at the hospital with a baby that we were still learning to comfort and one at home with a 3-year-old not at all understanding why her baby brother wasn’t home and why she never had family dinner with mom AND dad anymore. Everything that we planned and expected was different.
Thankfully we had a lot of support from family and friends. In the months that followed I unexpectedly transitioned to being a stay-at-home mom caring for the kids as my son went through multiple heart surgeries. As the months went by little-by-little life became easier. I am so thankful for the quality time I had to build the bond as a family of three because it most definitely held us together as we became a family of 4. In a little over a year my priorities had shifted majorly, and one thing was clear. Life is short and precious. Time and energy are not worth wasting on something that doesn't bring me joy. When it came time to think about going back to work, I wanted to focus on working with the patients that I was truly passionate about helping. And with that Kara Lyons Wellness was created.
Education and Certifications
Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy
Certified Lymphedema Therapist
Strength After Breast Cancer Certified
KickPink Level 1 Practitioner Certification
200-hr Registered Yoga Instructor
Kara Lyons Wellness began to support women going through their personal journey with breast cancer. This is a space to build community, lift each other up, and grow alongside each other. Cancer, illness and injury can steal so much away from a person. I am here for you. You are worth taking the time to care for yourself and find trust in your body again. I would love to connect with you and support you in feeling empowered and joyful in the activities that are most meaningful to you.