The holidays are just around the corner, and along with them comes happy moments with family and friends– the perfect time to be surrounded by your loved ones. Unfortunately, for many that suffer from a disease or illness, it’s hard to partake in holiday events and pretend as if everything is completely normal. Cancer, for one, is a difficult disease to cope with during holiday cheer. Whether you or someone you know is suffering from cancer, here’s how you can cope through the questions, the conversations, and enjoy the celebrations despite the circumstances.
Don’t skip out on the holiday fun. While it may require a lot of energy, this is your chance to not miss out on opportunities and experiences with those you love. Cancer can put a big elephant in the room, such as the burden of financial treatments, physical limitations that come from treatments, cause fear and change the overall dynamic between a person with cancer and their loved ones.
These words of inspiration coming from cancer survivors provide pretty good insight as to why someone with cancer should embrace the holidays. Don’t skip out on the plans. Whether it’s a relaxing night with Christmas movies on the t.v. or you take a trip to see those Christmas lights sparkle in the night, this is your time to find healing in the holidays no matter the circumstances.
Express Your True Feelings
The most important thing to remember around the holidays is that it’s completely okay to express how you really feel. Friends and family members may bring up hard questions and conversations but a person coping with cancer should always put themselves first. Yes, the holidays are about others, but first and foremost you should maintain low stress levels and ensure your comfortability.
Get regular sleep, talk openly about expectations during the family and friend get togethers. Admit when you’re simply too tired to participate or speak up when you’re ready to join in the fun. Either way, put yourself and your feelings first.
Celebrate the Highs and the Lows
In an episode of Dr. Ken back in February of 2017, an episode aired on the topic of breast cancer– more particularly, his wife’s journey of being diagnosed with breast cancer. Although it’s typically a comedy show, this episode by no means was making a joke out of cancer, but rather attempting to find humor and shed light on a dark situation.
Dr. Ken set the perfect example of how to lighten the sad mood that typically weighs over the topic of cancer. During the holidays this year, rather than get stuck on sadness, celebrate both the high moments and the low moments. When you or a loved one with cancer has a good day, absorb those emotions. If a bad moment occurs, cherish the comfort of having friends and family surrounding you during the time everyone else is celebrating with food, gifts, music, and more.