Eva Grayzel, Motivational Storyteller, Visionary Survivor
Eva explores the intersection of hope, healing, and giving back while telling compelling tales about facing death and living on to change the lives of countless others. An expert on interactive storytelling techniques with thirty years’ experience, Eva Grayzel brings new business strategies to life through the power of story. Master the art of a compact story that speaks volumes and leaves a lasting impression.
Cancer is understandably a dreaded disease, and late diagnosis often leads to the heart-wrenching results of loss. Early diagnosis and the right course of treatment are essential to get life back on track. And if professionals are not well-equipped or educated about the kinds of cancers that exist, it can be life-threatening for the patients.
Today, we have an oral cancer survivor and a celebrated storyteller, Eva Grayzel, who shares her unusual story of surviving cancer. She shares the impact and journey from the onset of disease to recovery.
About Eva Grayzel
Eva Grayzel is a professional storyteller and a tongue cancer survivor. She is a motivational speaker, patient advocate, and author of two award-winning children’s books to promote dialogue around cancer. She is the testimony of our soul’s power of regeneration as she worked on transforming her storytelling career into raising awareness about oral cancer.
Eva recalls the onset of oral cancer at the age of 33 when she, along with the health professionals, was unaware that a simple sore on the tongue could be deadly. She consulted multiple dentists for the treatment, but nothing helped her. She mentions her remarks that a doctor gave her, “Maybe you have it because you talk too much.”
She shares her disappointment as doctors were unable to treat it and asked her to come back if it didn’t heal. She says, “It felt like I was asked to self-diagnose it. It kept developing into late-stage cancer in front of everyone’s eyes.”
She consulted another doctor when the sore got coupled with excruciating pain in the eardrum. When nothing seemed to help, she consulted a doctor in New York on a friend’s recommendation and got the news of 15% survival.
She says, “I felt like an 18 wheeler truck went full speak from my toes crashing in my head.”
Eva recalls her days after getting the news and how she celebrated her daughter’s fifth birthday. She delves deep into her treatment, narrating how 4 lymph nodes were removed from her neck.
Transforming Storytelling into Awareness
Eva explains how she felt raising awareness was her obligation because she was lucky to be not disfigured after the surgery. She feels she couldn’t have let it happen to anybody else what happened to her. She advises people to always have a second opinion and to pay heed to what their body is saying. Eva shares her journey of a new storytelling topic as she learned her lessons on her way. She underwent speech therapy to strengthen her tongue and articulate better. Eva narrates an incident when she saw an awareness campaign on a public bus in New York, and she called the association and volunteered to help.
She recalls, “They asked me to speak at a national conference in front of 9,000 dentists. After the feedback, I realized I need to tell my personal story. So, I began to craft it.” She explains how as a storyteller, she was able to weed out the less important details and focus on the wisdom of what’s important for people to hear. She started her new journey from rotary clubs, high schools, and went on to speak for local dental hygiene associations.
Eva has also developed a six-step screening website that shares information on oral cancer.
Her Books & Impact on Children
Eva has written two award-winning books on promoting dialogue and overcoming fear about cancer among children. She authored the two books from her personal experience when everyone around her focused on her physical betterment, and her children were ignored in the process.
She shares that her daughter still has post-traumatic stress disorder. Eva shares her painful story of losing connection with her daughter, who refused to kiss her or share food when she was sick.
She recalls with almost tears in her eyes, “For two years after I recovered, she could not kiss me. She knew she could lose me and didn’t want to commit for another day of loving me.”
Every child responds differently. While her daughter became aloof, her son was always by her side, never wanting to leave her mother alone.
Change Of Life Perspective
Eva says she has realized the importance of life is in the breadth and not the length of it. She ends the conversation with, “Do things for others. You are needed and people need you. You just don’t realize it.”