I was diagnosed with breast cancer February 27, 2015. No, I did not smoke. No, breast cancer does not run in my family. As a matter-of-fact there has never been any cancer in my family, period!
I slowly began to tell family, friends and co-workers as I learned about my cancer, surgery and treatment. After the initial shock, everyone moved in orchestrated concert to give me their support. It was amazing!
I didn’t know what I needed but each phone call, text, video get well message, get well card, candy, hug, calendar, quote on canvas, journal and flowers were gifts that made me smile.
My co-workers immediately took over my duties and assured me they would handle it. They said, “Get well and don’t worry.”
My high school best friend took off from work and drove 2.5 hours to spend the day and take me to lunch. It had been years since we spent that much time together. It was like going back in time when we would talk non-stop about everything!
My precious friend gave me a pillowcase made by the women in her church with a note: When you lay your head down on this pillowcase, our prayer would be that you would smile, and remember that God will always hold you safely in His arms. May God’s blessings be with you.
Friends who are breast cancer survivors gave advice, encouragement and asked me to join a support group, Bosom Buddies! Now, I have been blessed with more friends!!!
Believe me when I say these gifts are priceless.
So you want to find out what is the perfect gift to give someone who has cancer? My experience through what I call it’s-gotta-be-a-fluke-of-me-having-cancer is… any gift is perfect.
Now let’s talk about a gift women over the age of 40 should give themselves.
One in seven women will get breast cancer so please get your yearly mammogram without fail. Also ask for the latest technology. I had the 3D mammogram and it caught my cancer in the very early stage.
If I had skipped this year’s mammogram, my diagnosis would have been a lot different at my next screening.
One more thing, my gift to you – EXERCISE! Studies show that three hours of exercise a week will reduce your chance of getting breast cancer. Guess what? Walking is considered exercising. Like my doctor said, get moving “at a pace like you’re late for church!”
Hearing the words “you have cancer” numbs you. Then your family and friends give you gifts that incorporate the other senses of touch, sight, taste and smell and helps you to be lively again.
Do you have a gift you’ve given to an ill friend or family member? Please share in our comments section.