Receiving a diagnosis of breast cancer is incredibly devastating. Breast cancer strikes without warning and often with no symptoms. Your life changes in an instant and you are no longer certain of your future. Things that normally would just be challenging, suddenly overwhelm you. Finding a way to reduce stress should be a key component of your recovery plan. Accept these feelings as normal, don’t ignore them. There are many strategies that can be used to alleviate stress, and you shouldn’t try to navigate this journey alone.
I sought counseling following my diagnosis and my counselor suggested I keep a journal. The process of expressing my feelings helped me isolate the cause. By reviewing my journal with my counselor, it empowered me to look back at how far I had progressed since my treatment began. Focusing on something positive like progress instead of the treatment I still faced, helped a great deal.
I also began to read every book I could find that was authored by a breast cancer survivor. Reading how others survived their journey, and acknowledging that what I was feeling was not uncommon, gave me hope. It was for that reason I decided that my journal would become my book, A Teacher’s Journey What Breast Cancer Taught Me.
If counseling is not of interest to you, a support group may be just as helpful. Seek out a support group with a positive outlook. Sadly, some support groups focus on side effects of treatment and turn into complaining sessions. This is not the time to surround yourself with any negativity. Positive reinforcement is what you need at this challenging time.
On the subject of negativity, avoid and cleanse your life of people who cause you stress. This may be difficult but absolutely necessary. Positive energy yields positive results and surrounding yourself with positive people will help to support your recovery.