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List of contacts for family in case something comes up unexpectedly
Glenda
2 Posts

my sister is now going thru chemo after having a small lump removed from her breast.. while she says she has all the support she needs with her hubby and kids around her - I would like to have the contacts ready to give to them if something they dont expect or helping her gets to be to much for them. They have always depended on her for everything outside of going to work and now its the other way around. As I use caregivers myself i know that they can suffer burn out or just get frustrated when is nothing they can do to help alleviate unwanted side effects. I wont push the contacts on her but a list on hand would help my anxiety and dealing with her, they are not an internet family so phone numbers are best. They live in Drayton Valley.

an update sis is off too her second chemo tomorrow and is much better prepared for round two. She has made sure to fill the prescriptions she was given for bone pain and insomnia this time. She is hoping her wig arrives before they make the drive to Edmonton. She was devastated when her hair started falling out and gout extremely short. Once she gets wig she said she would do the bald thing till her hair all grows back. Ty to everyone who texted me You really helped calm me down and my anxieties. Will talk again soon. Stay safe and strong.

7 Replies
Brighty
8442 Posts

Yrs, @Glenda the more people to help out , the better. Smart thinking. Sorry about your sisters diagnosis. How is she managing with chemo so far? How is the family coping?let us know what we can do to support you all as things move along .

Whitelilies
2272 Posts

@Glenda Hello Glenda and welcome from MB! So glad you connected here with us……I am sorry to hear of your sisters' diagnosis…

I think your idea to offer/create a List, is helpful and smart and may be useful,going forward.

Create this list….be it to put up on the Fridge, or create the list “online” so you can easily share/many can read and have access to it quickly, when the need (may) arise. Not just medical name and their numbers….why not include other “services”….ie grocery delivery…..house cleaning….driveway shovelling, etc….whatever you think she may need support with…add the contact info.

Let us know how she is doing…..and yourself too.

Welcome Glenda!

Whitelilies

#caring Sister

supersu
1102 Posts

@Glenda

good morning. welcome to the cancer connection community.

what a great idea to make a list of contacts for your sissy's family.

could there be a tele list with all of her papers from the surgery?
start there and add as the circle gets wider: family doctor, local pharmacy, oncologist, cancer centre RN's etc etc.
and don't forget the more personal things to her situation…..her hairdresser, her friends, and her favourite pizza delivery place.

what a thoughtful sister you are. it is always those who have walked the walk that understand the ginormous job that cancer and caregiving are.

sending my best to you both
cheers
su

#welcomenewmembers #caregiversareANGELSonearth #breastcancer #cancerisafamilyaffair

Faye
255 Posts

@Glenda A cancer diagnosis is so very stressful for all family members and it’s wonderful that you are wanting to help.
Im going to come at this from a different perspective and in doing so my intent is not to offend anyone.

in your mind this is the best thing for your sister but if I understand your post your sister has declined this offer as she feels she and her family have things in control. I realize you feel this would be the an organized way to move forward, and you may be right but again we need to know when it’s not our decision to make. I guess I was like your sister, even though I had cancer and was taking very aggressive chemotherapy I still was able to be in control of deciding how i chose to do and have things done.
I definitely appreciated the support of my sister, she was there on the crappy days , the days I was cranky with my spouse and daughters but she never crossed the line to try and make decisions for me or discounted what my spouse was in control of.
Some people need a lot of people around I was not one of those people and the theory the more people to help the better would have been very upsetting for me.

My advice just make Sure your sister knows how much you care and that may mean just quiet contact and support. Let her guide you as to how much she needs.

Glenda
2 Posts

Ty and I do agree as I don’t like ppl making my health decisions. I am just hoping she doesn’t do something stupid like do the stairs when she knows she not up to. She has a dog that needs being let out now and then and refuses to let her son take him on those days when hubby is working. Thank goodness only three more chemo treatments. The distance between us drives me crazy and because I am disabled being at her house in winter would make it emotionally and mentally unhealthy for us both.

elle29
1207 Posts

Yes Glenda ,I am sorry about this happening to your sister. Definitely a good idea she probably would appreciate you offering to help . Ask to print up a copy or 2 keep somewhere which would probably be needed & required to be updated .

If your on a computer ask or suggest a confidential way . Ie one copy in an old empty labelled pill bottle put in the frig to tell her & paramedic . Ask her permission often the pharmacy has a printout of meds too .That doctors or hospitals acknowledge .

And with everything she has to think about in cancer‘s agenda, its overwhelming . The uncertainty in cancer , weather, responsibilities , treatment sickness , side effects , taking care of keeping things in good order , as her car , transport to treatment and know keep Family healthy . Being that she always taking care of others and being the go to in confidence . Offer to do this part , to know you care and she is being looked after in those ways & details .

Cynthia Mac
3873 Posts
Hi, Glenda‍ , I agree with the others:

- offering to do a list of contacts is a great idea, but, as with any assistance, it’s wise to know that it will be welcome first. If your sister is resisting that help, you might prepare it and just keep it in your own home. You could be looking at it as helpful contingency, while SHE may be looking at it as a negative. If the list is needed, you’ll have it ready to pass on to her caregiver.
- including other people who might want to know how she is doing is a good idea - it might be helpful to provide “primary” and “secondary” lists.

You’ve noted that a hard-copy list will work best for her caregiver and family, but I want to share a few experiences I’ve encountered, in case others can use these ideas:

- One friend of mine set up a Facebook group for family when her son was starting treatment for his cancer (and her dad was having cardiac issues). That way, one message could be sent to all the people who “needed to know” at once, and everyone had the same information. The same could be done with other social media sites - google, twitter, etc.
- some families do a “fan out” phone call system. This can be tricky, because messages tend to alter as they are passed down the line, but it an work. An example would be - you, the sister, would contact the aunts and uncles, who would pass the information on to their kids, etc.

The one, very important thing I would ask your sister to let you help with, was the one mentioned by elle29‍ - the “pill bottle in the fridge for the paramedics.” I suggest this one all the time. In my municipality it’s called “File of Life” and it’s a printed form by our local paramedic organization that if put on a pouch on the top left corner of the fridge that has all the information they would need if they have to pick you up. We needed it twice while my Dad was in chemo and it saved precious minutes. IMO, anyone who is on any prescription medication or has any condition like diabetes, MS, or cancer should have this safeguard set up. It should also be updated periodically.

It’s wonderful that you have a good idea of your sister’s sensitivities, and that you’re so willing to be of service, however you can, given the distance.

#organizing #caregivingtips #FileofLife
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