The Affects of Cancer

Good Afternoon Munchkins. So this is the thing I was going to share with you that I mentioned yesterday, but if you don’t like this sort of thing then I’m sorry but tomorrow me and Chummy C are going to do a nice light-hearted blog. 

In the UK 1/3 people will get Cancer, which means everyone will be affected by it in some way. Already before this week many people I know have died or had Cancer including my Grandad who died when I was 5, my Mum’s Aunt who died when I was a few months old and my Mum’s Uncle who is still going, bless him. Many people when they hear that someone they know has been diagnosed with Cancer immediately think they will die, but that is in no way the truth. Many people survive from Cancer, even though it can have it’s lasting effects. For example my Mum’s friend had throat Cancer or something a couple of years ago and she needs to have these pills to keep her metabolism going. 

This week my Great Uncle Brian got diagnosed with Liver Cancer. It came as a huge shock and I don’t have many details, but Cancer in itself is not a good thing. Even though he’s family through marriage we’re close and I do like Brian, he’s a good ‘un. The thing is I’m not supposed to know but I got suspicious and got my Mum to tell me. His Grandkids don’t yet know, and I’m hoping he’ll come out of this OK and they won’t have to, but two of them are my age and we’re really close so I’m prepared to be there for them when they find out. I feel bad that I know before them, and I hope they won’t hate me for it because I don’t want them going through what I went through when our Great Nan died. The eldest is 10 days older than me and we talk a lot and I’ve kind of prepared what to say if Brian doesn’t come out of it even though knowing me it will come out completely wrong. If he doesn’t come out of it (*touch wood*) then he will be remembered as someone who is funny but also a bit of a tearaway, even now at 69. 

Obviously since my Grandad died when I was 5 I’m not going to really know what to do when the Chemotherapy or Radiotherapy starts because this is something I haven’t yet experienced. I know it’s going to be hard for the boys watching their Grandad deteriorate whereas I just have the one memory and some pictures so it’s not much to miss. As I’ve said I’ve planned what to say and I’ve got some tips of what to do if a really close family member has been diagnosed with a terminal illness or like me knowing someone who will be affected by it greatly. 

Knowing someone who will be affected by Cancer:

– Don’t get too involved but offer help (e.g send them a message saying ‘I’m here if you need to talk’). 

– Try and take their mind off it

– Don’t bring it up if they don’t want to talk about it

– If they want to talk about it, ask if they want you there at places like the funeral or whether they’d prefer to be alone

– Always listen

 

Knowing someone who’s been diagnosed with Cancer:

– Again, don’t talk about it if they don’t want to

– Only talk/do happy things

– Make their time worthwhile

– Ask them to make a scrapbook full of their favourite memories (keep it cheerful)

– Always listen (it always helps)

 

Obviously I’d like to put some advice for people who have been diagnosed with Cancer or a terminal illness but I have no experience of this and wouldn’t like to offend anyone, so sorry if that hasn’t helped you at all. 

When you find out someone has been diagnosed with Cancer it can be really difficult and you might be feeling:

– Angry (This could be at the doctors, family who haven’t told you, yourself or no one in particular)

– Upset (Knowing you’re going to lose someone so close to you is never easy)

– Relieved (They may have other illnesses like Dementia so it might be better they died before they forgot who you were, if that doesn’t sound too strange)

– Overwhelmed/Shocked (It’s hard to believe that someone is an ‘unlucky one’ and they’ve got a terminal illness, but just enjoy the time you’ve had with them and spend every moment you can with them while you can)

– Anxious (This could be whether someone else in your immediate family may have it or what’s going to happen to the person who does have it)

 

When somebody does die it is really hard to deal with, and this is going to sound a bit like my Bereavement blog which I’ll leave a link for below, but you should never take out their loss on yourself. Here’s some tips on how to cope with a death. 

– Remind yourself of the good times you had

– Think that at least they’re not in pain anymore

– Never take it out on yourself (e.g self harm)

– Concentrate on the things they’d be proud of (e.g school work, career etc)

– Make them proud with the end result

 

As many of you probably know there are two well known books that address Cancer and they are The Fault in Our Stars and My Sister’s Keeper. I’ve only seen the trailer of The Fault in Our Stars and the film for My Sister’s Keeper but I want to read the books so badly. The Fault in Our Stars follows a teenager with terminal Cancer and My Sister’s Keeper follows the family of a girl with terminal Cancer so if you read both you get a pretty good perspective of how it affects everyone. I know some people will be like ‘Oh, it’s not a real account’, yeah, OK, maybe it’s not, but like The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas, the friendship between Bruno and Schmuel would never have happened but the Concentration Camps and what happened to Jews were real. Same concept. Both end quite sadly, but it opens your eyes so much. I’ll leave links to both of them below. 

I know this blog is a bit longer than normal but this is such a broad topic and there’s so much to say. Obviously if you want to know more about this topic just let me know either by writing in the comments below or email me (links at the end). If you need any help or have your own stories then email me (or comment if you want, but don’t feel you have to). 

So thank you for reading, I know this might not be easy for you to read or write about yourself, but with 1/3 of people in the UK alone bound to get it, it must be addressed in some format. I’ll see you soon,

Rachel xx

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My Last Blog: https://rachelkate01.wordpress.com/2014/05/03/how-to-deal-with-rejection/

‘Bereavement’ Blog: https://rachelkate01.wordpress.com/2014/03/09/bereavement/

Childline: https://www.childline.org.uk/Pages/Home.aspx

‘The Fault in Our Stars’ Book: http://www.waterstones.com/waterstonesweb/products/john+green/the+fault+in+our+stars/9378186/

‘The Fault in Our Stars’ Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AuVjGbncgQE

‘My Sister’s Keeper’ Book: http://www.waterstones.com/waterstonesweb/products/jodi+picoult/my+sister27s+keeper/9796822/

‘My Sister’s Keeper’ Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HP4NxUFgFrs

‘My Sister’s Keeper’ DVD:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sisters-Keeper-DVD-Cameron-Diaz/dp/B002LL167C/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1399215023&sr=8-2&keywords=my+sisters+keeper

Ebay: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/My-Sisters-Keeper-DVD-Cameron-Diaz-Abigail-Breslin-Alec-Baldwin-/300934775376?pt=UK_CDsDVDs_DVDs_DVDs_GL&hash=item46111c4250

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