Over the past few weeks, we have had the pleasure of having cancer survivors share their stories as our guest bloggers. Today, we would like to honor all cancer survivors by sharing with you some of the important lessons we have learned from their inspiring stories of survivorship. We hope you enjoy reading their incredible stories!
Take care of your health with a good diet and exercise
Melanie Young – The Gift Cancer Gave Me
When Melanie Young was diagnosed with breast cancer, she consulted with a nutritionist to prepare her body for the rigorous surgery and treatment. By engaging in even a small amount of physical activity, Melanie was able to keep her energy level up through treatment.
Take advantage of the available resources
Katie Brown – Living Well With Lung Cancer
When her father was diagnosed with lung cancer, there were few treatment options and almost no outside resources available for those affected with lung cancer. Katie’s experience encouraged her to join LUNGevity as the Director of Support of Advocacy to support others living with lung cancer. Now, with organizations like LUNGevity, you can find support groups and get access to helpful information.
Let it out!
From her experience with breast cancer, Mailet realized how important it was to take care of her mental health and not let stress affect her overall health. She found it therapeutic to free her mind and get her feelings off her chest instead of bottling them up. IHadCancer‘s online community has a Dear Cancer section where you can send messages to cancer survivors and find support from the community.
Find your purpose
Jeannine Walston – How I Achieved My 15-Year Brain Tumor Survivorship
Dealing with a brain tumor diagnosis at a young age, Jeannine wondered what her meaning and purpose of life was. For her, finding her unique purpose helped with the healing process. She gained many skills from her cancer journey that have now become useful in her current career where she shares integrative cancer care information and inspiration to cancer patients to support optimal health and healing.
Seek advice from dietitians
Diana Dyer – Why We Need More Oncology-Credentialed Dietitians
Diana was already a registered dietitian when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. In a world where patients and caregivers go online for information, it is extremely important for dietitians to help patients sort through and evaluate the available nutrition information. She recommends asking for a referral to a dietitian who can provide you with the nutritional care you need before, during, and after cancer treatment.
Form good relationships with the healthcare professionals
Adrienne Gruberg – Who is a Caregiver?
Adrienne cared for her husband and mother-in-law for six years until they both passed away from cancer. She found it extremely helpful to develop good relationships with the professionals involved in the patients’ care, including the nurses, therapists, and pharmacists. Being friendly and professional goes a long way.
Believe in yourself
Debbie Zelman – Dreaming BIG to Cure Stomach Cancer
Debbie is a Stage IV stomach cancer survivor and the founder of Debbie’s Dream Foundation. She was told that she has only few weeks to live at the time of diagnosis, but she did not give up and was determined to not let cancer take her life. She is truly beating the odds by being the 4% of stage IV stomach cancer patients who survive 5 years after diagnosis.
Reconnect with your spiritual self
Lise Alschuler, ND and Karolyn Gazella – 6 Simple Steps to Help Your Spirit Sing
Lise and Karolyn are both cancer survivors and are authors and hosts of Five to Thrive Live on Cancer Support Network. Their goal is to help cancer patients live healthier, happier lives when dealing with cancer. They share 6 steps you can take to help you keep your spirits up during challenging times.
Let’s honor all of these cancer survivors — along with the millions of cancer survivors worldwide.