Monday, May 4, 2009

Cancer Wisdom

I might have already addressed these sometime before in one of my pieces about cancer, but this is probably the first time I'm collecting my thoughts about some good things to do while going through chemotherapy, or some other cancer-related treatment, or in fact any long, tedious, dull treatment that tends to depress one.

The first thing I would say is: Distract yourself. I’m not saying don’t think about the fact that you have Cancer. That is impossible. You have to think about it. However, make sure you don’t think about it too much. Try to divert your attention. Watch the TV. Read. Write. Play. Even do some work if possible. That is one of the most important things to remember during treatment, because the mind-numbing drip-drip-drip of the chemotherapy will definitely bring you down if all you do is think about it. I’m trying to say, relegate the fact that you’re undergoing chemotherapy to the back of your mind. You may have reactions like vomiting or diarrhoea - it happens, sometimes unavoidable, but get it over with and move on as if nothing as happened. Treat the cancer with disdain, almost as if your saying, ‘I’m too good for you, and I’m going to be rid of you soon.’

Second, and this is very important, try to have, along with the short term desires of needing home food or wanting to get out of the hospital, a long term goal that you can constantly work towards. If you do, then you start thinking about cancer and the treatment in terms of ‘When I will get through it...’ and not ‘If I will get through it...’

Third, involve yourself with the treatment. Make sure you know everything that is being given to you. Be proactive with the doctor. Ask questions. It will impress them, develop a better relationship between the both of you, and serve to quell any doubts you may have.

Fourth, develop a good relationship with the nursing staff and cleaners, mausis, mamas and everyone else you come into contact with several times a day. It takes nothing, just a smile and a thank you when they do something for you, and it really elevates their estimation of you, and after that they will, unconsciously or unconsciously, do little things for you that make it easier. Plus, its always better to be someone that is liked.

That's all for this episode, ciao till next time.