Just over three weeks ago my Nana was diagnosed with ovarian and uterine cancer. She had her first round of chemo last week. I haven’t seen her in a while though my Dad has been driving up (we live about two hours drive away) when he can to give her some support and help my Grandad out as his health is not that great. Dad is saying that we (me, my Mum and Dad and my brother and sister) will be probably driving up to see them next weekend. I am really nervous and I have no idea what to say or do or anything. This is the first time I have really had any experience with cancer. I mean, my Mum has lost a friend to cancer and one of my great aunts died of breast cancer but I don’t remember either of them at all. So I’m just looking for some advice as what is going to be the most helpful things I can do to support them. Thanks.
I’m sorry to hear of your Nana’s cancer diagnosis – sounds like a tough time for your family.I imagine your Nana and Grandad are looking forward to your visit – you will be a welcome distraction from chemo and hospital visits. The best thing when you’re there is to take your cues from them -spend time with them, maybe reading to your Nana, or going for a short walk with her if she would like that. You may find this list of suggestions helpful: https://www.cancer.org/treatment/understanding-your-diagnosis/talking-about-cancer/listen-with-your-heart/talking-tips.html
Maybe they need practical help eg some meal or snack preparation (smoothies, soup etc), shopping to stock up the pantry, lawn mowing??
I hope your visit goes well – you are also welcome to call us (cancer information nurses on 0800 CANCER(226 237) if you need.
Julie, cancer information nurse