In the cancer journey, there can be peace, calm and strength as you move through treatment and beyond. Most of this comes from the realization that healing comes from within. It is the work of joining body, mind and spirit – pulling together all of our resources – not just one.
To the general public, cancer often looks like a physical disease. One that once you have undergone surgery, chemotherapy and/or radiation, you are better and ready to resume your life as before. Well, NO. Yes, there is the physical healing, but just as important or even more important, is the internal work one does.
I found this part of the cancer healing journey both daunting and exciting. It called me to learn, reshape my priorities, embrace my authentic self, and heal many aspects of my life that were not working.
During that time, I focused on inspirational poems and stories by people who had gone through tough times and survived. I absorbed the life lessons they shared and gained insight into the work I needed to do for myself in order to be whole again. It has been and still is an amazing journey.
Everyone experiences moments in life that are less than ideal; for some they could even be described as depressing, gloomy or blue. But the important thing to remember is that everyone must take in the bad with the good; after all, it’s the not-so-great moments that allow us to really enjoy the true pleasures in life. However, it never hurts to have a few words of encouragement along the way, no matter what your grievance may be.
I enjoy helping others through their hard times because it makes my own problems seem pale in comparison with their hardships. For example, my Aunt Kelly was diagnosed with Leukemia about four years ago. Since then she’s received all sorts of extensive treatments that weaken her body and her spirits from time to time. Therefore, I like to write her lots of inspirational poems to help comfort her in this time of suffering. I only wish there was more I could do to make her smile.
Sometimes you are just not near to give someone you know going through cancer a great big hug. How do you let them know that you care and are there to support them during this time? Here are some ideas for inspirational gifts for cancer patients - ones to help you give from a distance – or even up close when time is the issue.
1. Send a card with an inspirational message and a personal note from you. Your friend or family member will feel the love and know that you thinking about them.
2. Email an inspirational poem you read or a story of a cancer survivor that will inspire hope.
3. Send a Tote Bag with an inspirational poem on the front – a constant visual of encouragement – something they can take to doctor/hospital/treatment appointments.
4. Buy a book – there is a wide choice of books for cancer patients that will both inspire, educate, encourage, etc.
5. Mail a Stainless Steel Water Bottle – with words of encouragement on it, funny sayings to add humour, a poem, bright and shiny. Many options. Cancer patients always carry water bottles as they need to hydrate.
6. Consider a framed inspirational poem that shares a message of understanding, hope and courage. Something they can hang on the wall whether at home or in the hospital.
These are just a few ideas – I’ll share more in another post. As a former cancer patient and one who now works with cancer patients, I hear what makes a difference.
Heading off to doctor’s appointments, treatments, etc. means carrying a lot of stuff with you. Most of the time, you have to wait and a good book or journal makes a wonderful ‘wait partner’. Chemotherapy treatments can take a while. I often carried meditation tapes with me and plugged in for the duration. It helped me relax and transport me to another place while the treatment was taking place.
Having a sturdy, roomy and – bonus – inspirational - tote bag is a great way to manage the bits and pieces while providing an inspirational message to keep you focused and positive. Staying positive and involved in your own healing are definite prerequisites to keep in mind.
As a friend or family member, these types of items make excellent inspirational gifts for cancer patients. I know many people ask for suggestions on what would be useful to their friend going through cancer. Here is one idea.
We all need something to carry our gym stuff in – shoes, exercise gear, socks, etc. Now that cooler weather is coming, most of us will take our workout inside. How chic to have something different – a gym bag with a message – something to motivate us and remind us of the finer points of living.
For those going through health issues, such as cancer treatment, tote bags or gym bags for carrying journals, snacks, water bottles, music, etc. can become unique inspirational gifts for cancer patients or someone who has frequent doctors appointments, etc.
Unique bags are also a signature item – they work for anyone. We often need to be reminded that life is precious and it pays to slow down to appreciate the small moments often missed in our ‘hurryness’.
Life presents many challenges. Some challenges we can control, others we cannot. At these times, surrender may be the option. However, this is not easy. Most of us in life want to control everything around us. Getting a cancer diagnosis brings this issue up front and centre the fact that control is not always possible.
Inspirational poems shedding light on difficult issues, such as surrender to life situations, or even just sharing a different perspective can offer encouragement and a gentle reminder on days when life seems confusing.
Our lifestyle in North America does not leave much space for quiet time. We are constantly striving to get more and more done in our days, weeks, years. Little time is spent in contemplation or down time – time to give our brain a rest and rejuvenate. Cancer is a big wakeup call that says loud and clear – Slow Down, Regroup, Rethink Priorities.
Inspirational gifts for cancer patients - anyone for that matter – can reflect values and thoughts of life lessons such as the poem ‘Quiet Time’ on the pillow (left). These inspirational poems or sayings on everyday items can be subtle reminders to Slow Down, Regroup, Rethink Priorities.
The cancer journey awakens emotions and issues which, in the light of day, we try to ignore. Sometimes they are buried deep inside of our soul, hiding and jump up at unlikely times.
Journalling is a way to explore these feelings. Life pops out on the page, often surprising us with insights and new ways of looking at our life.
Journals make thoughtful inspirational gifts for cancer patients. Consider one with an inspirational poem on the cover to give a starting point for the journey.
The emotional toll that cancer takes is often just as burdensome as the physical one. During a loved one’s cancer journey, it’s often difficult to find the right things to say and empathize with how the person is feeling. Even if you’ve had cancer yourself, each person’s experience is different, and finding thoughtful and meaningful means of expression is challenging.
If you can’t find the words to express your feelings, consider inspirational gifts for cancer patients you know. The gesture of giving a gift will say more than any words ever could. And many of these inspirational gifts contain quotes and poems to offer solace during their journey.
Cancer is not the only time that we need inspiration. Life throws us curve balls now and again, and finding something that will inspire you to move forward and through these times is important. We all find inspiration in different ways.
- Friends who we admire and coach us to be the best person we can be
- Books of courage helping us realize that most everyone in life faces challenges. It’s how we deal with them that is the measure of the person.
- Inspirational poems that we can place in clear view to help us keep our focus and perspective
- Movies that touch our soul
Going through cancer is very scary and having resources that provide inspiration at this time makes the journey a little easier. You are not alone.