Having Distinct Empathy

Being a member of support groups makes me realize the importance of empathy. Most cancer patients associate empathy with highly improved health upshots. Moreover, since diagnosis, I have gained the ability to sense the emotions of other people and imagine how they think or feel. On my part, I have been given the chance to exercise empathy regularly with patients living with lung cancer as well as their caregivers. Indeed, having evident empathy is a skill for me to unfold as I am living with lung cancer.

Understanding patients’ emotions

My cancer journey has rollercoaster of emotions. There is a feeling that life is out of control. I can relate to the shock and denial of a newly diagnosed lung cancer patient. Moreover, I understand the fear, guilt, and blame of a patient living with lung cancer. I am able to see the life-changing experience. Much more I can recognize the changes in roles at home, school, and workplace.

Sharing our diagnosis

I have lost my old self at diagnosis. Without support, I could feel alone and isolated. There was a time I was uncomfortable talking about my lung cancer. Later I realized that keeping other people involved and informed about my illness could ease my burden. Another way is to join support groups where most of the concerns and issues are the focus. In the group, we understand each other and they are living with lung cancer too.

Respond with compassion and care

I join existing support groups to openly talk about my journey and ask for more accurate information related to my diagnosis. However, each response I give to fellow lung cancer patients has to be free of judgment and genuinely caring. In addition, what matters most to them is critically important.

Simple acts of kindness

A simple act of kindness can ease the profound challenges linked to cancer diagnosis and treatment. With the appearance of COVID, physical touch is a far-fetched gesture for the protection of one’s health. Over the years of my journey, I have lived with lung cancer due to the presence of prayers from believers, listening ears, and caring people.

Worthy behaviors

Being more empathetic involves worthy behaviors. It is important to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem. Don’t take it personally if a fellow cancer patient is angry. This is a natural response for people who are sick. Give more understanding of cancer-related fatigue and slight memory loss.

Setting good example of empathy

I am given a gift of empathy. Showing I care and giving my time are ways I can be of help to someone going through a cancer diagnosis and treatment. In addition, staying connected with fellow patients living with lung cancer opens up a channel of communication and trust.

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