Living with cancer blog

How has cancer changed you?

By Sheryl M. Ness, R.N. July 21, 2010

How has life changed for you as a cancer survivor? So many times, I hear someone say "my life is so different now," or "cancer changes you." In exploring this idea a bit more, it's not so much about the physical changes that take place, but also the emotional and spiritual changes.

I remember talking with a woman who had just had breast cancer surgery. She was in her early 40's, with a husband and teenage daughters. She wasn't so concerned about the physical changes that she had undergone, but mentioned how her family relationships had changed. She said that she was closer than ever with her family. She was very open with her daughters about everything that she was experiencing. She was honest about her feelings and talked with them about genetic testing and planning for their future as well. They had a great way of giving strength to each other through open and honest communication.

Many times, religious faith is strengthened, family members take on new roles, and friendships bring new meaning. Personal perspectives, priorities and habits can all be a bit different than before your diagnosis. These changes can be positive or negative and present new challenges that you haven't had to deal with before.

Please write in and share with others how cancer has changed you.

With

Sheryl M. Ness, R.N.

Follow on Twitter: @SherylNess1

Jul. 21, 2010