This guest blog on breast cancer help was written by ShareCancerSupport.org, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping women facing breast and ovarian cancer. For more information, visit their website.
A breast cancer diagnosis can be scary, and it rightfully should be. If you or someone you know just got this heartbreaking news, you may be wondering how you will go on, and what to do from here. Cancer and its correlating treatments can bring about both emotional and physical changes, and here are a few ways to help you cope with these changes and the thoughts, feelings and emotions which often accompany them.
Talk About It
Whether it’s to a friend, family member, a pastor, rabbi, co-worker, or your own personal God, talk about what you are feeling and going through. Don’t struggle and keep your thoughts, feelings and emotions to yourself because it will make you feel “healthier,” or at least more “normal,” if you let them out, and get them off your chest. In that regard, scream, cry or do whatever you must in order to get those sensations out. Keeping them inside your body will do you more harm than good, and by sharing these thoughts, feelings and emotions you will be giving your loved ones their desired opportunity “to be there for you.” It will also get rid of a great deal of anxiety when you share your feelings with someone who listens to you.
Live Life One Day at a Time
With all that lies before you, it can seem overwhelming trying to think about what will happen in the future. Therefore, take time each day to do things that make you happy, and be around positive people who love you. Focus on making it through one day at a time, and not trying to think about what will happen next week, month, or year. Just put “one foot in front of the other” to get through difficult days.
There will also be days when you can’t do anything but cry; and you need to understand that’s “ok” due to the overwhelming nature of your diagnosis. This reaction is a perfectly normal response to coping with something so huge. More importantly, never be ashamed to let people see you cry. You are human and have emotions like everyone else.
Take Care of Yourself
If you feel like going to a movie and going shopping do that! If you feel like curling up on the couch with a good book, that’s great too. Take advantage of offers you get for help around the house, with childcare or a meal. Eat a healthy diet, and take all your medications as prescribed. If you are tired, make sure to rest, and never try to push yourself to do something you truly aren’t up to doing.
Remember You Are Not Alone
Last, but not least, always remember that you are not alone in this. Thousands of women every year get this terrible diagnosis, and there are support groups everywhere which can help you find people to talk to.