When you are facing an advanced, chronic disease such as metastatic breast cancer, your old life can feel like it has come to a full stop because you’ve lost control over your health. This can be immensely overwhelming and confusing. As you navigate your new normal, there are certain things you can do to take some of that control back. Read on to find out how you can manage your disease and live your life to the fullest.
Recognize that There’s No One-Size-Fits-All Approach to Dealing with Metastatic Breast Cancer
Keep a close eye on how your body is responding to treatment and what’s helping you. But first, determine if you want to know everything or just learn the basics. For some individuals, they need to learn everything they can about their treatment to help them feel more in control over the situation. For others, however, knowing everything will just make them more overwhelmed and anxious. If this is the case for you, consider having a loved one accompany you to all doctor’s appointments and treatments. Put simply, there’s really no wrong or right way to cope with cancer treatment, and you just need to figure out what’s the best one for you.
Communicate Openly and Honestly with Your Medical and Care Team
Don’t hesitate to ask about your treatment and disease. Likewise, if you want to discuss something, perhaps something you read somewhere or suggested by a friend, share it. Asking and sharing are extremely vital so that your medical and palliative care team in Indiana will better understand where you’re at and how to help you.
Create a Plan to Manage Daily Life Matters
Paying bills, running errands, child care, transportation to and from appointments and treatments, medical insurance, and household chores are just some of that many things that you still have to work out as you go undergo treatment. If you have yet to find the right palliative care team, consider getting help from a social worker experienced with breast cancer cases to help you figure out how to manage potential challenges.
Seek Out the Right Support Network
Whether you talk to a loved one, trusted friend, or therapist, it’s crucial that you have someone to talk to. Or you can seek a support group that specifically caters to women with metastatic breast cancer. Note, though, that you should always tell your oncologist about any recommendations that you might want to try just to be on the safe side.
Live in the Now
This is understandably easier said than done, but don’t wallow in your past and try to live in the now. It’s common to want to turn back the hands of time where you feel most in control and don’t have cancer. However, it’s better to focus your efforts on the now and things you can control.
Getting diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer can affect every single part of your life. But with advance planning and a positive outlook, you can take better care of your body and mind as you deal with your diagnosis.