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Cancer During the Holidays

The holiday season is in full swing … but your body just cannot keep up with the hustle and bustle. Hey, that’s OK; you are in a fight for your life! Missing a party, skipping Black Friday (and Cyber Monday) is not the end of the world. You know this all too well.

Still, many family and friends may not understand why you aren’t the life of the party, or even at the party. You may even feel out of step, just a little off of your game. … It can be frustrating and overwhelming. You may feel disconnected from everyone.

So, how can you reconnect during this time of year?

Enjoy the get-together atmosphere? Host a potluck! This relieves you of the burden of preparing across the board for guests. Everyone brings something to the tabled and voila! – the pieces of the puzzle come together without the fuss and muss of a do-it-yourself party.

Don’t want to bother with a house full of people? Book a table at your favorite local restaurant! You already know the atmosphere will be to your liking. Add loved ones and it’s a ready-made celebration of the season.

If you aren’t up to shopping locally or trekking to a mall, embrace online shopping. Invite family members or friends and shop around the kitchen table. The “digital revolution” isn’t just for millennials and social media!

Also, check out the group activities at your church, the YMCA, the YWCA – anywhere that folks are welcome to join in. The worst thing that can happen is that you’ll meet new people, maybe even someone who has been where you are. Maybe someone is exactly where you are and needs someone who understands.

Do not feel as though you have to say yes to every invitation that comes your way. Take care of you; pick and choose which events work for you, are best for your schedule, and will allow for the least amount of stress. It’s your time and energy being spent. Choose wisely.

If you’re going to travel, be sure to talk with your health care professional. If you have an appointment that can be bumped a few days, which will allow you more time with loved ones, reschedule the appointment! Enjoy the extra moments with family and friends.

You know the everyday battles during a cancer fight. Rely on yourself to make decisions that are in your best interest. Laugh, cry, reminisce with those you love. The emotions of life are to be shared – but do this on your terms.

Above all: Just breathe. You have built yourself to survive. You are strong enough to face the holidays and make the most of your time, your energy.

The holiday rush is going to be there. But you don’t have to further jeopardize your health to keep up with the pack. You’re fighting cancer. You have enough on your plate; adding the sides of angst and anxiety are not the just desserts for your troubles.