We recently asked those of you who had chemotherapy to share advice with people who are just starting and we received an amazing response! We wanted to highlight some of the tips to help those who are starting chemo and may not have seen our Facebook post.
Take a look at the tips below and don’t forget to leave your own advice!
Kimberlee: Be positive and have great people around you to support you and lift you back up when you think you can't take one more tx. I hate chemo, but I hate cancer more!
Sherrie: Warm socks, good books, always stay hydrated, do your best to keep an upbeat attitude and a great sense of humor! Eat whatever tastes good, because not a lot does, use plastic utensils....Smile.
Ann: I have watched my dad fight for over a year. He told me just about what everyone has said on here. Remain positive, know God is in control, keep moving, just because you have cancer doesn't mean you quit living. I've never been more proud of him. Wake up thankful every day.
Olga: Stay positive, have faith, have hope. Don't let anybody scare you with their stories on what happened to them. We all have had different types of cancer, so we all had different therapies. Some of us did well, others did not, but don't let that scare you. I beat this terrible disease two times! #YOUCANDOIT
Carrie: Just feel all the feelings you need to. Cycle through them without guilt! You'll feel vulnerable, stressed, frustrated, hopeful, angry, frightened.... You name it. There isn't a "right" way to feel. The more you are prepared to deal with the full gamut of emotions, the better. Arm yourself with a small group of loyal and supportive friends. Ask questions. Let the Onc nurses know everything. Dress comfy, don't worry about sugar or fat or whatever...Just eat what tastes good. Cut yourself a lot of slack during this time.
RevCindy: Be kind to yourself. Nap...A lot! And if you have to infuse with a pump at home (I did), you might get angry at it. Yell at it, if you need to. It can take it!
Beth: Ask questions of the nurses and don't hesitate to express a concern, get more information, whatever. They've seen it all. If something hurts, if you feel dizzy, if you notice an unanticipated side effect, speak up. Help is there for you. And, most importantly, it's not fun, but it's doable, and you'll get through it.
Penny: Take all this advice and mine is....Remember it's only temporary! It will be over soon. Set some goals, mark the calendar, grow a small garden....Find a hobby in the middle of all this! Stay strong and think positive!
Lisa: Take each day as it comes. You are still you. Sometimes you'll have a great day, others may be bad. But embrace the fact that you can do this. Believe you can win this battle; know it will change you into somebody so much stronger!! Eat and drink what you can handle. Focus on the here and now, never tomorrow. Love yourself and those who support you. You got this!!!
Jamie: I just had my 8th round of chemo yesterday, I have 12 in total. My last one is scheduled for June 24, 2015...Not that I'm counting down or anything! The best advice I can give to anyone is that attitude is honestly everything!!! I've tried my best to keep a positive and upbeat attitude even on the worst days and it has made a world of difference. Also, listen to your nurses and doctors when they are giving you advice that can make the chemo go a little smoother for you. Drink fluids, drink fluids, drink fluids...I cannot stress that enough. I thought my care nurse was exaggerating on how big of a difference this can make in your chemo treatments, but she was right. I drink more Gatorade and water now than I ever have—it seems to help get all the nasty fluids they pump into you out of your system faster. One other thing I can say that I have learned from experience since I have been diagnosed is, do what makes YOU happy!!! Do NOT feel bad for cutting people out of your life that bring you down in any way. Surround yourself with positivity and happiness; it will make a world of difference during your treatments. Anyone who can't see that doesn't deserve to be in your life any way. You are about to go through a tornado of feelings from nausea, fatigue, hot/cold flashes, numbness in your hands, feet and throat, etc. There will be high times during your chemo and there will be low times also. Talk to people in your support group, whether it is a friend, family member, neighbor, therapist or even your cancer support group—don't hold anything in. It will eat you alive. You will meet many, many good and kind people within the colon cancer community. I have reached out to so many people I have met online and have had many reach out to me. Always remember that you are not alone. There is an army of us fighting this nasty disease who totally understand everything you are going through. WE ARE HERE FOR YOU! I was diagnosed with Stage 4 colon cancer at the age of 27. I went from planning my wedding to putting all of that on the back burner until I was done with this battle. I pray we find a cure and that everyone can be at peace finally. Love you all! #ColonCancerAwareness #ColonCancer #CancerSucks
Thank you to everyone who shared their great advice! You can find more chemotherapy tips on our Facebook page.
Don’t forget, the Colon Cancer Alliance serves as a source of information and support. If you have additional questions about colon cancer or are in need of support, please contact our free Helpline at (877) 422-2030. We’re here to help.