I can start the ball rolling by answering my own question here. (I'm AlizaMLS, a BC patient and retired Medical Librarian).
I began meditating in 1989. That was a difficult year. I separated from my husband and had my daughter who was age 2. My girlfriend was a TM (Transcendental Meditation) Instructor and advised me because I was extremely anxious, to get some meditation instruction (not from her because she was too close to me [there's an ethical component with regard to their philosophy]) but from a TM Center, so that's what I did. If you Google TM or Transcendental Meditation you can get the entire history of the movement which was much more popular years ago when the founder Maharishi Mahesh Yogi was alive - he was the fellow who influenced the Beatles (some of you may remember) and ultimately (for other reasons), they wrote their song "Sexy Sadie" about him and his "activities". Back to meditation,
Yes, it helps. I have a mantra that I use that is my own (given to me by the teacher at the TM center) and it helps me to refocus and concentrate on the breath-most meditation does that. I know from reading about it and practicing it as well that Zen meditation does that as well, though I am not seasoned at sitting zazen. With TM you are supposed to sit for 20 minutes twice daily. I was very good about it in the beginning and at various times in my life,. I will confess that I have not meditated since I was diagnosed last August-I think you'd have had to tie me down first, because of stress. I wished I would have done many of the things I advise other people to do then like get in touch with CancerCare earlier. However it's never too late to go back to. I just bought meditation music at one of the boutiques at Sloan Kettering and am looking forward to listening to that and I think I will try TM. Meditation is hard in the beginning because other thoughts always float in-daily concerns, here-cancer, and you must learn just to let them float in and then say your mantra to yourself and bring yourself back to the breath because there is only Now!