We go through life assuming that our greatest challenge is being successful, as a person, partner, parent, professionally. Until we get challenged by disease, then we realize that health might be that ultimate goal.
This might be an uncomfortable subject for you, but the truth is that shit happens. When it does, the question is how you are going to deal with the dis-ease. Finding the right balance between the mental and physical challenges that you face, directly influence the experience of being ‘sick’. Will it be tough…. probably. Will it be lonely…. could be. Will it be doable…. yes.
It has been over 4 years since I was faced with a very bleak cancer diagnosis. I know the darkness as well as the gifts that this journey can bring. Working with me therefore means that I bring this experience to the table, as well as my other skills. For me, you are not sick, but you have sickness in the body. And in all likely-hood, you now have to handle your self care on a massively different level, make difficult decisions, process lots of information, deal with medical terms and language, work through your emotions, stay mentally sane, and try to keep living a life of quality. It’s a lot.
Ok, so you have been diagnosed. Now starts the work. Where can you find some ease in the process of dealing with dis-ease. You may experience a sense of lost control, or you feel in the dark with all this information. Perhaps you are struggling to enjoy life and it’s precious moments, or keep a steady mental state. Whatever it is, please know that this is the time to call upon all your resources and ask for help. So here is what I believe offers some ease in the process and I can support you in:
- Working on balance, allowing for a clear mental state while processing emotions
- Creating a clear understanding of your current diagnosis and choices through mapping out the information
- Creating an overview of your needs as a tool to seek support in meeting these
- Mapping out your health-team, where do you go, what for, how often, what do you expect from them
- Designing a plan to help guide you through this journey, what are your goals, which are your priorities
- Communication skills, talking to medical professionals or to loved ones about illness takes different language skills
- Being your accountability partner, supporting you to stay the course you have set out for yourself
Perhaps you are not the one walking the path of dis-ease, but someone close and dear to you is. Remember that you too must take care of yourself. Always put your own oxygen mask on first before helping others. Finding someone to hold space for you as you process, find your balance, weigh your priorities, and accept that you cannot take on another ‘s burden. This will help you to fully be there in the moments you are with your loved-one going through dis-ease. This person can be anyone you trust and feel safe with, just make sure you discuss the boundaries of these sharing moments. I too can offer you that space.
As you may understand, cancer is part of my life now and I have learned the true value of paying it forward as so many have helped improve treatment protocols by opting in on trials, sharing information, etc. So I try to do the same. But not only that, I also organize events to inform, raise money, support and you can find those on my socials. Follow me there if you are interested. Most of them will be local (The Netherlands) and in Dutch though.