I love to make practical lists – mostly to do lists, but also lists of things to pack for a beach trip or how to put up the complicated big tent. From very early on in this healing process I started asking people who had cancer for their top tips – this is the list they and I have built. Feel free to save and share with those who might benefit. Presented as if a series of magazine headlines in “Healing Today” magazine.
- Put your Chemo Schedule Into Your Calendar. Record it as x-y (x is round and y is day in the cycle). Use that area of your calendar to record notes on what day lets say 9 feels like – you’ll catch patterns that will be helpful. You’ll know not to schedule something on a day when you know you won’t feel good, and you will know what day to expect a chemo session, though its not on the calendar yet.
- Build Community. Know who your good angels are and call on them for the special meal you want to eat or a visit when you are so tired.
- Use a bite guard. If you are biting the inside of your mouth when it has sores in it, use a bite guard.
- Don’t cut your nails too short. They may stop growing and even get a bit worn away.
- Best of:
- Eyebrow pencil –https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B003VPTA2U/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1
- Chemo caps – https://www.headcovers.com/headwear/hats-turbans/ I like the snood style more than thecap style. Oh and satin pillowcases are helpful when you sleep with a cap. I find my cap keeps falling off as I sleep on cotton.
- Vomit bags – Fits in your purse you won’t even know its there https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B0051AZZCM/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&th=1
- Purse sized, odor free, hand sanitizer – https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00AAGKS5Q/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1
- Foaming sanitizer (use wet or dry) https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00AAGKS5Q/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1
- Put a fast, easy to read thermometer in many rooms of your house. https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B010TTBORE/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&th=1
- (If it fits) A Spiritual Reading Per Day. Prayers for Healing is a good choice.
- Prevent Thrush. Use a solution of warm water, salt and baking soda to rinse at least 2x a day.
- Food. Know that if you get nauseous when you get chemo the foods you choose to eat may never be appealing afterward. Be strategic.
- Don’t let Constipation Win. Don’t be more miserable than you need to be. Senocot. Miralax, prunes, and more are helpful. And this is great: https://smile.amazon.com/Squatty-Potty-Original-Bathroom-Toilet/dp/B0196BEWWA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1489245904&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=squatty+potty&psc=1
- Don’t let Diarrhea Win. Probiotics are helpful.
- Healing takes more time each day than you might imagine. Yes, there are only 2 chemo treatments each round, but in addition there are shots, blood draws, visits to the doc. emergency visits to the doc, days when you are tired and more. Some nights I sleep more than 10 hours. Some nights I can’t sleep much and am useless the next day.
Prayer: Its snowy and cold outside. This isn’t a beautiful snow to my eye. Its gray out and I’m worried about the trees and bushes that were blooming and are now covered in ice. It is the sort of day when its easy to feel out of whack – Spring in February, winter in March. Lists keep Alexa grounded and she likes to share learning. The harder won the learning the more she wants to share it. Grounding – Blessed be.