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When Kindness Counts

img_3401Hi Everyone,

     Over the last few days I have been struggling with my Cancer, and my own mortality. I have been projecting into the future, thinking of all the “what ifs”. This is something I always have to work hard to control, as it is wasted worry and energy. Staying in the moment, and enjoying each treasure life has to offer, is what I strive to do. But sometimes, things get ahead of me. I think that this is a common occurrence for Cancer patients. Usually when I hit these bumps, I tend to withdraw, and try to push through my fears with the help of my husband, “Saint Ken”.

     But lately, I have come to realize that staying bottled up doesn’t work as a strategy any more. So I took the risk and reached out to share my concerns with others. What I received back was so wonderful. People knew just how to react. It was a powerful example of how to help someone with Cancer. It was also a testament to the benefits of reaching out, and of sharing your fears and feelings with others.

       I was so moved by the support, I wanted to share some of the gems my friends shared with me. These are examples of what to say to someone with Cancer. They will make a tremendous difference to your loved ones who are fighting this battle, or any catastrophic illness.

  • “I am all in for you, and all here. You just talk and tell me everything!”
  • “I know you are really scared. I’m here for that part. You can be as scared and crazy and unsettled as you need to be.”
  • “You are doing so well with your illness and I have no reason to believe this will not continue. Just know you can always count on me and my love for you. Now go have a piece of candy!
  • “You are the best! How can I help? I love you!”
  • “You have fought way too hard to be brought down by an ovary!”
  • “You are a shining example of a strong survivor.”
  • “You are so strong and I know you will remain so. You always will have my love and support.”
  • “I don’t know what to say, but I’m here for you.”
  • “I’ll ride this roller coaster with you girlfriend!”
  • “I’m here to listen.”
  • “You’re in my prayers.”
  • “Tell me everything. I want to learn more so I can help.”
  • “How about a hug?” 

     Responses filled with friendship, sensitivity, and humor have helped tremendously. I cannot say enough about reaching out and connecting with others. The best part of our humanity is our ability to help each other. We each have people in our life who are ready with a word, a kind gesture, or a hug, to let us know we are never alone. Go ahead. Take the leap. Reach out.

‘Til Next Time,

MJ Keenan

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