Yes, And with Dr. Maureen Aarons

July 5, 2023
Decrease Volume
Increase Volume

About this episode

For the majority of her life,  Dr. Maureen Aarons was a people pleaser, raised in a strict Catholic family where many decisions were presented as binary.  Even her decision to go to medical school seemed like a choice: be a doctor, or become a mom.  When she married the love of her life, who happened to be Jewish, Maureen describes it as “breaking their family’s hearts.” When she was diagnosed with cancer 3.5 years ago, Maureen began to more fully embrace the power of Yes, And.  Yes, she can still serve her patients, be present for her family, give back to her community AND she has to attend to her own needs to keep doing all the things she wants to.  Maureen believes “Yes, And” is the way to live a more fulfilled life.  Please listen in to hear Maureen’s beautiful life story. Bio: I have been a daughter/sister for nearly 61 years, physician for 35 years, wife for 33 years, mother for 31 years and cancer patient for 3 and a half years. As long as I can remember I was drawn to asking questions, solving problems, and connecting with people of diverse ages and backgrounds. My diagnosis of invasive breast cancer opened a crash course in self-care, self-awareness and openness to change. "Shut up and listen” has long been my professional habit and has become (imperfectly;) my mothering mantra, as our three children grew.  Receiving a life-threatening diagnosis caused me to really stop and listen to myself. While self-care is the ONLY work that ONLY we can do, healing cannot happen in isolation. My husband, our children, our friends, our extended family, and even my patients and acquaintances, were my scaffolding while my body and spirit underwent an intense period of renovation. The work of healing was both internal and communal. I received gifts and accepted help without hesitation and without anxiety. I said “yes” to everything that felt supportive and limited anything that didn’t serve my overriding purpose of wellness. My life before chemotherapy (followed immediately by Covid) was extremely productive but sometimes at the price of adequate sleep and any time for play. Though I had emphasized the great value of rest and personal boundaries to my children and to my patients, I did not prioritize either in my own life. Now, back to full time work in a brand new practice, I stay more consistently connected to myself and my own needs throughout each day, no matter how busy. Inside and outside of my office, I laugh more, spend more time with friends, stress less and stay much more curious about possibilities, present and future. The reciprocity of healing relationships allows us to both give and receive, in equal or unequal measure, without keeping score and and even with wild abandon. Website: