If you’d like a copy of Allison’s brochure go here and follow the steps.
2. Don’t avoid the person just because you don’t know what to say. Not only does this send a wrong message to your friend or loved one, it’s not healthy for YOU. Always acknowledge the person – even if it’s through a heartfelt card. You don’t have to have the right words – your meaning and caring will still come through.
The most common reason for avoiding a person with a life-threatening illness is not knowing what to say. Here’s a tip – follow these guidelines and speak from the heart.
The second most common reason for avoiding is because you can’t bear to see the person in this condition. I strongly encourage you to muster your courage and do it anyway – if you don’t visit this person, you’ll likely regret it someday. Start slowly – send a card as your first gesture, then a phone call until you work your way up to a visit. But don’t wait too long. If the person doesn’t want to receive visitors, respect their wishes, but do send a card or email. When in doubt, check with a close family member first.
I have a friend who’d been told about my breast cancer before I had surgery. I specifically asked someone to tell her, as we don’t speak that often. Still, I thought we were friends. I haven’t heard one word from her. Oh wait, maybe I did. Maybe the word was “Goodbye”? or “I’m a scaredy cat” – which is more than one word, of course. Artistic license in action. If and when she’s ready to reach out, I’ll be ready and willing to accept.
And then I heard from people who totally surprised me with their phone calls or cards – or emails. Let’s me know why I took a liking to those people in the first place.
I know that I’ve asked people not to visit me for the first couple of weeks. A few people ignored that and came over anyway. And I loved that. That’s the bond we have. I tell them what to do, while I’m under the influence of pain and painkillers that don’t stop the pain plus a whole lot of feeling sorry for myself, and they do what they know is best for me. They never listen. And I love them for that because really, I am not always the best person to make choices for myself.
And I love the people that respected my wishes – gave me the time I needed to work on my healing.
Everybody did the right thing – isn’t that awesome?
This breast cancer has given me a lot more flexibility emotionally. Physically, I can hardly brush my own hair. Which is probably why chemo will take my hair away. Good god, I hope I can reach the top of my head in the next couple of weeks. I took so much for granted. Like arm movement.
But emotionally I’m a whole lot gentler and kinder than I was before the cancer. Which makes me wonder how long it’s going to take before I get back to my regular, acidic self.
Today we’ll be venturing out to visit Thing 1. I won’t be writing about Thing 1 here. Just know that he’s doing well and keeps asking for gum. He’s at a non-smoking facility.
Thank you again, Allison, for being there for me.
You too, Dan.
Oh wait. Forgot something.
Seriously? People avoid people with cancer because they can’t bear to see the person in this condition? (the acidic – it’s making a comeback!) Am I such a monster with my flat chest and big belly that I swear to god, I didn’t have before?!! Is it my lack of hair product? Really? I need to start taking names of houses to visit once my hair falls out. I’ve got some scaring (and scarring) to do!