Monday, August 27, 2012

Its all about the buddy system

Remember the buddy system? You went places in twos to help keep track of each other. The military started the buddy system but it works in the medical world as well. You take a buddy with you to your 'big' doctor appointments so you can be the patient and they can write down the doctor's answers to your questions.

The buddy system is also important as a cancer patient - with the icky diagnosis the best thing you can hear is from some one who has been through it - and made it through the same treatment you are facing and is there to talk to you about it.

If you join a support group, you might end up with a bigger group of buddies but if you aren't interested in support groups or they aren't available to you. But you still need a buddy. Sometimes you can't find one yourself which is where organizations like Immerman's Angels come in.

I had heard about them before - they pair cancer patients with someone who has been through it - but  never really knew that much. There was an article on CNN last week and I learned a little more. They are primarily focused on younger adults - under 40 - but are open to all ages. I signed up this morning to volunteer as a mentor.

I am unique in that my first diagnosis was at 19 so I think I can help younger adults cope with life after cancer. Or I hope I can be a buddy to someone who needs a buddy.

1 comment:

AnneMarie Ciccarella said...

Jonny Imerman.... I'm an Imerman's angel, too.... He is AWESOME....