So, it’s official. You’ve been diagnosed with cancer. This time it’s not some family member, acquaintance, or celebrity—it’s you.
Like it or not, you’ve joined the cancer movement. You’re one of “them.” More accurately, you’re one of us. And from this moment on…your life will never be the same.
Some things will be worse and some things will be better…There will be many surprises but also discoveries. In the days ahead, you will find your own way to deal with your cancer diagnosis.
Fortunately, with some perspective, you can claim a measure of stability. That’s where this primer can help you. It’s a tool to guide you through your initial cancer diagnosis because—if you’re like most people—you probably don’t know what to expect, and that can be terrifying.
So take a good, deep breath and create an opportunity to read quietly. If you are unable to focus, ask someone you trust to read to you. Then, get ready for a reality check because we’re going to take stock of the “situation” together. And the situation is this:
You have a life-threatening disease that requires your immediate attention. At this moment, there is nothing more important than stopping everything else that you were doing in order to consider this. Why? Because understanding your role in managing your own health is the only thing that will can allow you to (continue to) have a life that has quality. Think about it. No matter how much others may wish to help, you alone must initiate the healing journey.
This is the first step.
From This Moment On: A Guide for Those Recently Diagnosed with Cancer
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Staircase drawing by Henricus Hondius, c. 1751