As breast cancer survivors have learned, coping with any serious illness can take a toll on you - emotionally as well as physically. This week, we'll be giving you some tips each day on how to manage your recovery so that you can move forward with your life. We begin today with acknowledging where you are coming from.
Accept your changing emotions as normal and give yourself permission to express them. After a brush with cancer, it is normal to feel many different emotions such as anger, fear, worry, anxiety, depression, stress or loss of control. It's OK to express these to people you trust and acknowledge them to yourself. Only then can you begin to cope with them.
Recognize the changes in your body. You may feel that your body has betrayed you, leaving you feeling vulnerable and with a loss of innocence about your own invincibility. You will need to grieve this loss. In addition, you may be experiencing side effects of the treatment such as fatigue, stiffness, lymphedema, weight gain, as well as menopausal symptoms. Once you clarify for yourself how your body is reacting, you can address each of the symptoms in your efforts to alleviate them.
Tomorrow we'll look at more ways to take care of yourself if you ever need to deal with a diagnosis of cancer and treatment options. For tips about how to develop better communication with a loved one when serious illness intrudes, click on the post title above to take you to an article on our website, www.HerMentorCenter.com, Boomer Couples: Deepening Your Conversations about Serious Illness.
Today's pink ribbon is by Vanessa Rumaz and can be found on Carol Sutton's site, http://www.carolsutton.net/download_pink-ribbon.html. All week, we'll be featuring different pink ribbons created by talented women and men to increase public awareness about breast cancer and encourage research on this disease.