Monday, May 2, 2011

More on helping if you know someone with cancer

As a follow up to yesterday's post on helping people with cancer. What can you do to help? How can you help? While a cancer or other diagnosis doesn't mean life is over, it can make things difficult.

I assume everyone has the best intentions and wants to bring over a meal or something to help but with cancer, a casserole may not be appreciated. If the person cooks for their large family, casseroles may be appreciated but if a smaller family or someone else cooks, I would definitely ask. And as a reality check, how many casseroles can one use at a given time? While in chemo, food can lose its appeal. I don't like shrimp any more. While in chemo, scallions made me nauseous.

I think the best thing to do is ask them, their spouse or other family member how you can help. Maybe they don't need food but need someone to help get the kids to school or be there for them after school so both husband and wife can go to treatments together. Or even help getting the kids to or from sports or other events. Or maybe they need rides to or from treatment. Or maybe just picking up prescriptions to getting groceries for them. Or maybe help with laundry or house cleaning or more. Sometimes, they just need people to stop by and chat since they aren't up to going out and socializing.

When I was in treatment, I had a total of 16 chemo rounds over five months. The first four were pretty awful and my husband made it to all of them. But there got to be a limit to how much time he could take off from work. My last 12 treatment were weekly doses of Taxol and I started to feel better so sometimes when he couldn't stay, he would drop me off and my parents would pick me up. That worked for me but other people may not have the luxury of local family members to help.

I ran across another cancer blogger recently and on her blog she has posted a page on her blog about how to help her which basically sums it all up. The little things in life like going to the grocery store or doing laundry can get very complicated.

When you have cancer or other nasty ailments, life goes on and you have to cope with your life as well as your diagnosis. Help is always appreciated.

3 comments:

nancyspoint said...

Good advice to ask what might be of help. Sometimes little things like unloading the dishwasher feel insurmountable. So you might not even get asked to do that much!

Blood in the urine said...

Thanks for the tips. Being around someone who is cancer stricken can be a bit tricky, People (at least I personally) don't want to overstep my boundaries when trying to help them, lest they think that I am just pitying them, but also understand that they are undergoing some treatments which may make it difficult for them to do their regular activities.

Dawn Faust said...

I spend a good deal of my "free" time helping others with Cancer. As a survivior, I feel called to the support and encouragement of fellow cancer suviviors daily.
I have written quite a few poems in order to minister to those in the trenches of the battle.

Thank you for this post and your blog. If you would allow me to direct you to my site in the hopes you may share with others and they might gain stregnth. My site and blog contain my poems and writtings. www.cancercuredmylife.org.

God bless you and keep you!!

Dawn Faust