people comfort a newly diagnosed woman with comforting body language and word bubbles of advice

Community Views: Advice for Those Newly Diagnosed with Blood Cancer (Part 1)

When a person first receives a blood cancer diagnosis, the emotional aspect sometimes takes a backseat to the immediate physical needs. While doctor’s visits and treatment plans are key, so is emotional health. Having the right attitude and a plan for staying well during the journey is just as important.

To learn more about how our community members addressed their mental and emotional health after their diagnosis, we turned to our Facebook page. We asked you to fill in the blank: “My advice to someone who was recently diagnosed is ___________.”

Nearly 100 community members weighed in. We had such a great response that we divided your answers into two stories, one focusing on clinical advice and another on emotional tips. Here, we share what our members said about the emotional aspect of a blood cancer diagnosis.

“Be an optimist.”

Believing in a positive outcome is one of the best ways to stay motivated during your treatment plan. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed by cancer and the long road ahead. If you can, take it one day at a time. Be present today and appreciate the good things of the moment, whether that is how you feel today or the dinner your partner made you last night. Gratitude is a huge piece of positivity.

“Be an optimist. Some people live decades with multiple myeloma.”

“Stay positive! Have faith. Do not allow the negativity to surround you.”

“Never give up.”

Many people refer to it as the fight against cancer. If that approach works for you, use it. A strong spirit – the fighter’s attitude – can keep someone with blood cancer ready to tackle the next challenges they face. That may mean ready for another round of treatment, or simply ready to make and eat a healthy dinner.

It will be an ongoing fight, so all the reminders to not give up can prove helpful. You may even want to write this on a sticky note and put it on the bathroom mirror. Or, you may want to list all the reasons why you promise not to give up during this journey.

“Never give up. Never give in.”

“Be strong. Be a fighter and do not let your diagnoses define you!”

“Make sure you have a good support system.”

No one wants to face blood cancer alone – and no one has to. Some people talk about their diagnosis on Facebook to inform their network. This can also help identify the people who want to show up and be of service in your life. Also, it is fine to be direct. Ask a friend if they will go with you to treatment or pick up groceries for you.

Online communities like this one can provide a safe place to vent and release emotions. They can also be spaces where you can ask for and give support.

“Gather your support system around.”

“Ask friends and family to help clean your house, do yard work, run errands, cook meals, go shopping, and sit and visit with you.”

“Make sure you have a good support system.”

“Do not force yourself to do too much.”

One of the hardest parts of a new diagnosis is accepting that your life will most likely not look exactly as it did before. No matter what your life looked like before, it is unlikely you are going to have the energy to tackle life and work as you once knew it. Your body is going to need rest, and that is OK. Rest is how the body heals and recovers.

“Do not force yourself to do too much too soon. It will come back and bite you in the behind. Take it one day at a time. Small steps.”

“Rest and let people help!”

Thank you to all the community members who shared feedback for this story. We are grateful to hear from so many of you.

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Blood-Cancer.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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