On the show

What do you do before a double mastectomy? Dance, of course

Nov. 7, 2013 at 9:11 AM ET

In a six-minute video that proves Beyonce makes everything better, a breast cancer patient dances in the operating room with her doctors and nurses before going under anesthesia. The video, which is quickly going viral, was uploaded on Tuesday, the day Deborah Cohan had her bilateral mastectomy at UCSF Medical Center at Mount Zion in San Francisco, according to her Caring Bridge page. (Cohan is also an OB-GYN at the hospital, so she had some pull when talking the doctors and nurses into being her backup dancers.) 

Cohan's idea was to have a sort of worldwide, virtual dance party with her family and friends in the minutes before her surgery on Tuesday. "My fantasy is for you to play the song ... and dance wherever you happen to be ... ideally at 7:30am but really anytime Tuesday," she wrote last week. "Nothing brings me greater joy than catalyzing others to dance, move, be in their bodies. Are you with me people?" 

Cohan's joy and energy in the video has lifted the spirits of people around the world, including TODAY.com reader Chris Harmon, who posted to our Facebook page, "my family is going thru cancer right now too... this brought tears to my eyes, what a lovely spirit she has!!!!" And late Thursday afternoon, Queen B herself even posted the video to her Facebook page

Dancing through the hard times seems to be a family thing. In a post dated Oct. 29, Cohan wrote about telling her kids, Dahlia and Ben, about her breast cancer. The kids asked some questions, and they talked about their mom’s upcoming surgery.

“Then spontaneously, as if on cue, Ben stood up and started singing the 90’s pop song ‘Everybody Dance Now’ as he and Dahlia started shaking it on the living room rug (appropriately called the dance floor in our house),” Cohan wrote. “Okay then. We are all going to be okay.”

You can follow TODAY.com health writer Melissa Dahl on Twitter.


TOP