Nurturing Yourself During Cancer
Cancer is certainly difficult for any woman. It brings up a great deal of emotions and fears, and takes away your sexuality and your sense that you are appealing. It is a challenge to continue to feel beautiful and sexy during this time, and to feel like you are in control of your life. Here, we offer some suggestions to help you to deal with your emotions surrounding your cancer, to feel in control and to feel beautiful.
Pamper Yourself During Cancer
If there was ever a time in your life to get pampered, it's now. You'll need to check with your doctor to see what you are allowed to do. If you get the green light, give yourself whatever pampering will help you during this time. If you love manicures - get them. If you want massages or bubble baths - enjoy them. If you can't afford to spend money on these items, you probably have friends who are waiting to help you and who would love to be of service to help to nurture you and fulfill your needs.
Allow Your Emotions In
You don't have to have a brave face all the time during your cancer. You can cry, have trouble getting out of bed and want support from others during this difficult time. You will probably feel like you are on a rollercoaster through this crazy period - and that's alright. Allow yourself to feel scared, angry, nervous, guilty, happy and more. Reach out to other people and to organizations with similar experiences. Join a cancer support group, go to private therapy, talk to a religious professional, or join a blog or chat support group.
Keep a Journal or Blog with Cancer
If you want to create a private place to express all of your emotions, a journal is a great choice. You can feel free to write anything that you want to in this space. Don't censor yourself and try to remind yourself of the positive things in your life. If you want to share your experiences with radiation and chemotherapy in a more public sphere, start to keep a blog. Many people find that they don't want to explain what they are going through to friends and family. They might be able to explain their emotions and issues in a blog space, and others will feel connected without having to bother you.
Try to Keep to a Routine
Try to keep a routine in your life to help you to feel grounded. Even if you aren't working and have an open schedule, try to create some routine for yourself. Schedule reading and relaxing time, make a date to see a friend each week, take a nap at the same time each afternoon, and take a walk each day. Certainly, you may change these routines around, but it can be very comforting when you feel out of control to have something that will ground you.
This is your body and you'll want to be as knowledgeable as possible about your cancer. The more that you know about the disease and about your specific situation and treatment options, the more that you can feel in control. Look online, go to the library, join support groups, talk to your doctor, and keep up with the latest research on your disease. Keep accurate records of your treatments, your behaviors and your feelings. Feel comfortable asking your doctors many questions and demanding things that you need for yourself.
Lean On Others
This is not the time in your life to play it tough or to be strong. Lean on those you love and take their love and support as much as you can. Let people make you meals, wash your floors, take you away for the weekend, and more. When most people ask you what they can do to help - they really mean it. Rely on them and let them help you to get through this time.