Thursday, January 26, 2006

My lessons from chemo

I started this awhile ago, and never posted it, so here it is...

So recently a couple of friends and family of my friends have been diagnosed with cancer. I'd like to look back and say a few things, based on my expierence, as dos and don'ts.

(I'm using the terribly un-grammatically correct gender neutral 3rd person singular "they")

Do:
Learn to make Poo Tea
Hug them
Do their laundry
Scoop the cat box
Let them sleep (with satin pillowcases, they are nice to the head)
Watch movies you don't want to just because they do
Be there for the long haul (when distance is not a factor) - the beggining is rough, but 3, 4, or 6 months later, they are still going through chemo, don't forget they might still need laundry and cat box changing.
Tell them they are beautful and you love them just the way they are
Even if they are crazy (like me) and drive themselves to and from chemo, show up sometime just to say hi. The nurses can only entertain you for so long.
Kiss their beautiful bald head
Talk about things other than cancer and their treatment

Don't:
Ask how they are feeling with every conversation
Say "its only hair" or "it will grown back." They know that. Telling them trivializes their feelings and partonizes them.
Let them push you away too much
Always believe them if they say they are still "fine" 2/3 of the way through. The stress takes a toll, and mentally they might not be so good.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

These are very wise and helpful comments. My only comment back is that it was very hard to respect your "pushing away" - hope you know how much we wanted to envelop you with our love and care. All around... difficult waters to navigate. B

7:11 PM  

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