Supporting a Loved One Who Has Cancer

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I’ve read a lot of different articles about how to best support someone who has cancer. When/when not to visit. What/what not to say. And so on. I took the ideas I liked for myself and added some more in that Amanda and I have talked about.

Information about visiting me at home, in Roanoke, or during a medical appointment or procedure can be found here.

 

A big thing I see repeated over and over again is to avoid forced optimism. Please be my friend, not my cheerleader.

Examples of things not to say to someone with cancer:

  • You’re going to be fine. I know it.
  • You’ve got this.
  • God doesn’t give you more than you can handle.
  • This is God’s plan (or some variant of that).
  • You’re just one step closer to a cure!
  • You’re on your way to a full cure.
  • You can beat this!
  • You will beat this!

 

Am I determined to beat this? Yes. Of course! But currently there is no cure for what I have. And it is very treatment-resistant. The first chemo I was on (gem/tax), is supposed to give patients the best prognosis. But it didn’t work for me. My tumor grew larger while I suffered through 3 rounds of it. My goal is to live the best life I can live until there IS a cure, and then get it. And be cured.

 

But you don’t know that I am going to fine.

I’m fighting hard to be in the leiomyosarcoma version of remission: No Evidence of Disease (NED). But I’m not one step closer to a cure / full cure. But I have signed paperwork to donate a paraffin block of my tumor to the Leiomyosarcoma Direct Research Foundation. And if you know anyone else with this type of cancer, encouraging them to donate a block and/or fresh tissue from an upcoming surgery can create a real way to be step closer to a cure that all of us with LMS can benefit from.

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