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Let's discuss the holidays: Having a break from treatments, spending time with family

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The holiday season can be a very difficult time for those living with cancer. Hearing carols played throughout the stores and seeing festive decorations everywhere they go, cancer patients can often feel out of tune with life around them. But knowing the strong spirit of our community members, we asked them to share some of the things they are able to look forward to during the holidays.

Two themes emerged: being able to take a break from treatments, and spending time with loved ones. Here’s what some of our online community members and Facebook followers shared with us:
“The Christmas season usually makes me sad. I miss my kids, although I hope I will see one of them. If my chemo schedule holds, I will be having chemo Christmas Eve; that means I will have the infusion bag on for Christmas Day. I am looking forward to spending Christmas with my sisters and my mom. There will be lots of activity Christmas Day at my sister’s house. I’m looking forward to the possibility of a chemo holiday in the new year.” — Wanderful

“Good health; finishing the chemo.” — Annigje

“Finishing my chemo treatments!” — Chel

“A week break in chemotherapy and lots of family on Christmas Day!” — Wanda D.

“I celebrated Christmas 2006 by completing my FINAL radiation therapy treatment on Friday, December 22nd! Funny what a little pushing your radiologist doctor can do when you want to be home for Christmas!” — Melanie

“Celebrating Christmas with my loved ones. Last year my family brought dinner to our house as my second surgery took place on December 23rd so my holidays were spent at home in recovery mode.” — Nicole D.

“Being at home with my mom (who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer) and not going to work.” — Lisa H.

“Having the family together.” — Teresa M.

“Spending time with family.” — Gloria-Anne

“Spending time with my family and being a breast cancer survivor. Celebrating and thanking the amazing team of doctors who supported me during two breast cancer surgeries. Thanks to them I am alive today to celebrate another Christmas season!” — Linda B.

 “Celebrating Christmas with my family. We are all too familiar with cancer. My grandparents & my father will be with us in spirit, and two of us are fighting our own battles now…We have learned too well how precious and short life can be. The greatest gift is time together.” — Kimmy Lou

“Remembering my Mom for our second Christmas without her. Keeping the memories of her alive, and spending Christmas with my husband who is with me for Christmas another year…third year remission. Home is where the heart is.” — Melinda K.

“Knowing my dad is no longer suffering and is at peace. My mom and I miss him terribly (he just passed away on the 26th), but he’s not in pain, and that’s the best Christmas gift I could have asked for.” — Kimmie F.

“Just spending time with my family; this could be the last holidays so will enjoy every moment spent with all of them in every positive way possible!” — Danielle M.

“I’m kind of ambivalent towards the holidays, there have been many tough times around the holiday season but I enjoy it for the most part. I lost my father a week before Christmas; needless to say Christmas 2004 was not a good time. But when it comes right down to it, both Thanksgiving and Christmas mean a lot to me. The biggest thing for me is that 5 years ago after being told I had a week to live, I am still here to enjoy my time, which is why in another thread I mentioned that I always look forward and not back. I guess what I am saying is make the best of it, no matter what you do.” — Terry

What are you looking forward to most this holiday season? Join the discussion



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