Grief is a natural reaction that comes when you receive your cancer diagnosis. Grief to some patients can last longer or progress into depression. To others, it will improve as time passes by. During this time, you need a lot of care and support from your cancer care team and your loved ones.
A pancreatic cancer diagnosis changes your life suddenly. You will start thinking of the frequent visits you will start making to your new doctors, changing your lifestyle habits and much more.
All these changes can cause grief as you feel the loss of your freedom, your usual routine and the loss of the days you enjoyed better health. Grief comes with a mixture of loneliness, anger, fear, and sadness.
Here are some of the ways you can cope with grief:
- Speak about it openly with your support system – For a pancreatic cancer patient to overcome their grief, they should speak publicly about their grief with their support system. Having a support system of healthcare professionals, caregivers, family and friends and patient advocates is very important. This will help you address and manage your needs. Talking about it openly with your loved ones and cancer care team can help you get the support you need, including finding medicines or strategies that will help you feel better.
- Allow yourself to be helped – It is good to let your support system to help you. Your loved ones can join you on your visits to the doctor, help with cooking or taking care of the household chores.
- Join a support group – Connecting with other cancer survivors will give you the confidence in coping with grief. From their support and encouragement, you will know what to expect and be ready for it beforehand.
- Get educated about pancreatic cancer – Learning all you can about pancreatic cancer will help you feel in control and develop a sense of independence. The more knowledge you get regarding your situation, the more confident you will feel when talking with your cancer care team and making important treatment decisions. Get all the resources you can and study them carefully.
Getting over your grief is quite challenging. But as they say, time heals all wounds. With time, you will overcome your grief and find a way to move on. Always remember to keep all the people in your life closer to you for maximum support.