When Chris Delucchi was diagnosed with breast cancer in the summer of 2009, she started with the traditional route of treatment — she had a lumpectomy and started chemotherapy.
But while chemo is no picnic for anyone, Delucchi found the treatments especially toxic. Against her doctor’s wishes, she turned to a non-traditional, diet-based approach.
“My body just didn’t resonate with the high toxicity so I started researching natural approaches and even found a woman who’d tried it who had the exact same kind of cancer I had,” the 46-year-old Portland native says. “I did a lot with juices, wheat grass, a plant-based diet, changing stress levels, having vitamin C IVs and that sort of thing … I don’t go out and preach that everybody should take this approach, but it worked for me and I just had a sense that it would.”
She got a clean bill of health in December.
Delucchi will speak more about her experience at a storytelling event Tuesday at Woolly Mammoth Theatre hosted by Philips Healthcare and the Moth (themoth.org) to raise breast cancer awareness. She’ll be joined by two other breast cancer survivors for the 7:30 p.m. event. Those interested in attending should e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Delucchi, a lesbian, came to Washington for her first job out of college as a sales assistant at the Washington Post where she worked for about three years. She owns two communications/marketing companies, Delucchi Plus and Blue Bug Digital, and lives in Cleveland Park. Delucchi enjoys travel, spas, skiing, painting, writing and reading in her free time.
How long have you been out and who was the hardest person to tell?
I have been out since I was 30 and the hardest people to tell were my parents because I thought they would be disappointed in me. They were very supportive and it’s a non-issue today while I do think there was a time of adjustment for everyone.
Who’s your LGBT hero?
For me it’s anyone who can be themselves in all areas of their lives. I love Ellen for coming out on TV to the world.
What’s Washington’s best nightspot, past or present?
Describe your dream wedding.
Destination wedding on a beach in Greece.
What non-LGBT issue are you most passionate about?
Educating people about how to take control of their health and be their own advocate.
What historical outcome would you change?
9-11 and terrorism today.
What’s been the most memorable pop culture moment of your lifetime?
When I met Warren Buffet and got a picture with him to give to my father on his 70th birthday (His idol is Warren Buffet).
On what do you insist?
Integrity, honesty, passion and change.
What was your last Facebook post or Tweet?
Photos from the side of the road on the Jersey Turnpike —Roadside BBQ & Bear carvings. I thought I was in another world. I was.
If your life were a book, what would the title be?
“From Coffee to Kale — How Breast Cancer Saved Me From Myself”
If science discovered a way to change sexual orientation, what would you do?
What do you believe in beyond the physical world?
A power greater than myself has a plan for me.
What’s your advice for LGBT movement leaders?
Stay strong in your convictions.
What would you walk across hot coals for?
My partner, my family and to have my father survive his stage four lung cancer.
What LGBT stereotype annoys you most?
Having stereotypes in the first place like butch, femme, etc. We are just people!
What’s your favorite LGBT movie?
Tied: “Birdcage,” “Brokeback Mountain” and “The Kids Are All Right”
What’s the most overrated social custom?
What trophy or prize do you most covet?
First place in the Benton County Fair for my blueberry muffins.
What do you wish you’d known at 18?
What I know at 46. Family first and that success is defined by happiness.
My first job out of college was with the Washington Post so I moved the week after graduation and never left.