by Jeannine Poythress, caregiver
Cancer. It is the word you hear that sends this sick feeling to the pit of your stomach. I will never forget that day. It takes you back a few steps. You wonder how you will cope.
On March 1st, 2010, I heard those words. “Your husband, David, has cancer.” I said, are you sure? The answer was yes. On that day we began to maneuver this disease called cancer. I felt afraid and unsure. Will I be able to take in all the information and somehow make sense of it all? Who would I have to talk with? Who would be there for me when I had questions? How would I be able to advocate for my husband the resources he needed?
During David’s treatment and survivorship, we relied on the resources and programs available to us through the Leo Jenkins Cancer Center and the American Cancer Society McConnell – Rabb Hope Lodge. When I heard there was an opportunity to support the Cancer Support Community of Eastern North Carolina, I was grateful.
Finally, a one stop shop to provide support, answer a multitude of questions, and provide beneficial programs on nutrition, exercise, financial assistance, and continuity of care.
My husband and I would benefit from activities to help keep the mind strong and focused. We believe other cancer survivors and family members will get support from a place to ask questions with caring individuals who would understand. Support groups allow us to be able to share feelings in a safe place. It is a blessing to be among people with a common ground.
Cancer support programs do just that; bring people together battling cancer to a common ground. A friend once told me, “Sometimes life throws us a curve ball.” It’s nice to know there are programs available that offer support and resources when the unexpected happens. Thankfully, my husband is a four year cancer survivor.
However; even now I can use and value a place where cancer patients and their families can receive the care and support they so richly deserve and need. A caring environment goes a long way in the healing process for cancer patients and caregivers.