“This Isn’t Really Happening”

When you were first told that you have cancer, chances are that you didn’t believe it.   Sure, you heard the words and yes, you were actually sitting in the doctor’s office after having the tests, but getting the news somehow didn’t seem like a real possibility.  You may have told yourself that it’s just not going to happen to you and so you prepared for that.  BUT, you forgot to prepare for the possibility that you could actually have the Big C.  After all,

the people who knew that you were getting tested all told you to just think positive.  Or maybe they simply said that they were sure your tests would all come back negative.  It’s really too bad that we’re so good at denying things because if we would just try to be realistic, we could avoid a whole lot of disappointment and perhaps fear as well!

Denial Is Not Just a River In Egypt – so my sister tells me.  That phrase really just means that denial cannot be denied!  Hmm, was that ironic?

“Talking Won’t Change Anything”

talk, friend

We tend to think that talking about it – saying it ‘out loud’ – will either make it worse or perhaps just make us FACE it! Who wants to face their fears?  Maybe you tried talking about it and all you heard was negative stuff. So you just decided that talking really doesn’t help and now you have proof!

You may find that you will need to find the ‘right’ person to talk to and that may take some searching!  It is NOT recommended to join a social media group when you’re first diagnosed.  Even though you think you’ll find some sympathetic ears, the truth is that you are walking into a group that you really have no knowledge of – at least, not yet!  Sure, you may find a sympathetic ear or two. But speaking from my own experience it seems there are a LOT of cancer patients who enjoy sharing all the gory details of their journey.  They are only too willing to share with you how awful it was and what their doom and gloom diagnosis is.  Remember: YOUR cancer is not THEIR cancer.  YOUR journey is not THEIR journey either!

Talk to your oncology nurses (the best resources in my opinion) to see if there’s a LOCAL support group you can join.  They are usually free and you may likely find that joining a group is the best therapy you could ever get!  Helping others has a healing factor all its own!

“That’s It!  I’m Going To Die!”

What is the first thing you thought when you heard the word, ‘CANCER’?  Death, right? EVERY year more and more advances are made in the fight against so many cancers.  A story was written by a doctor in 1939 By FRANK HINMAN, M.D. AND DONALD SMITH, M. D.  They were referring specifically to Prostate cancer, but their prognosis was very grim.  That was almost 100 years ago and it’s amazing how far we’ve come since then.  There are so many cancers that were once considered the end of a patient and now they are nothing more than a ‘bump in the road’!  I find this very encouraging.  Here’s a link to the article if you care to take a look.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1660113/pdf/calwestmed00352-0020.pdf

In my own experience, one of the chemo drugs that was prescribed to me had only just been approved one year prior.  And it had shown GREAT success in breast cancer treatments.  New drugs are being developed all the time.  So, don’t waste your time worrying about it. Trust your doctor!  ASK your doctor if there’s any new information or medicine that may be available.  Especially if you’re given a diagnosis with not-so-great odds.

When you DO find yourself overwhelmed with worry or fear, I encourage you to go to your Bible and ask God to comfort you. He showed Himself to me in a wonderful way during my chemo days. This suggestion may cause you to roll your eyes.  That’s ok.  Try it anyway. You just might be surprised at the outcome!

“I Can’t Share How I’m Feeling”

First off, let me just say that “can’t” and “won’t” are NOT the same thing.  You most certainly CAN share your feelings.  You just need to tell yourself that you WILL.  Awkward?  Yes, for some it may be.  Who cares?  If sharing your feelings will help you feel better – for even a little while – then why WOULDN’T you at least try it.  You know that feeling that you probably have in the pit of your stomach right now?  Well, that feeling can be lessened A LOT by just talking about your cancer and how you’re feeling about it.

Sharing your feelings may NOT be easy for you, but it IS necessary to THRIVE through your journey.  This does NOT come naturally for some of us, so don’t beat yourself up if you’re one of those people.  Start by talking to people you already talk to about things.  If you’re married, start with your spouse.  If you have a best friend, start there.  Do you belong to a church? Look for someone there who you can reach out to.  When someone asks you how they can help, TELL them!  Ask if you can get together for lunch or coffee and just start a dialogue. You won’t know if you don’t try.  That person who you don’t think would care may be the exact person you could find yourself leaning on at times when you really need a friend.

Conclusion

If you take a step back and really look at these lies we tell ourselves, it’s obvious that none of these things is helpful at all.  Every ONE of them is negative.  And speaking from personal experience, it is ALWAYS better to be as positive as you can be about ANYTHING!

What about you?  What are some ways that you’ve found to overcome the lies?  Have you found a great way to cope with cancer?  I’d love to hear from you.  Please leave a comment below or send me an e-mail.  Let’s Thrive together!

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