I think we have all been there. A friend gets a diagnosis of Cancer. He/she needs an operation to remove the disease and then there will be chemotherapy and radiotherapy after that. Everyone that knows them is left reeling from the diagnosis and no one really knows what to do, what to say. You want to give them something that tells them you care, you want them to fight it, you are there for them. Sure flowers and a card might well be appreciated, but is there anything else you could do?
Well, yes, there is. Why not look to Herbalism for some gift ideas? Unfortunately Herbalists can’t cure Cancer, but we can support the body so it makes a good recovery.
My name is Clare Rickett and I write a blog called Viridian Herbalist. I am a recovering accountant and a trainee Herbalist, and my blog charts the development of what will be my new business. I was asked to write a guest blog for Unique Gifter, and so it is my pleasure to give you some tips for this most awkward of occasions.
So, first of all we need to think about what your friend, the Cancer Patient, is going to be going through. Obviously there is the shock of the diagnosis, quite likely the onset of a form of depression, if not depression itself, and then there is the operation as well as the chemotherapy and radiotherapy for them to face with some pretty nasty side effects.
We need a basket or a bag to put our gifts in. I think this should be a natural fibre (say seagrass or jute) and if you can, make the inside of it colourful. Colour can really change people’s mood. Make it their favourite colour and you are onto a winner. The first thing I would put into the bag is a nice face cloth made of cotton. When someone goes through chemotherapy, quite often they get symptoms of a fever, so dampening a face cloth down with some cool water will work really well as a compress. Or you could make some Lavender Water, which will be cooling as well as relaxing and comforting. Put about 5 tablespoons of Lavender in a cup boiling water and steep for 15 minutes. Strain, and then dilute the liquid as needed to fit into a spray or spritzer bottle. Really simple to do and it is homemade gift straight from the heart.
I would also include some green tea, maybe a new mug, some red grapes (they have more anti-oxidants than green grapes, and anti-oxidants are really good for you), and maybe some aloe vera gel which can help to cool that hot skin I talked about earlier. I would also include some ginger biscuits (ginger is a great anti-nausea treatment) and maybe a voucher for a bottle of their favourite cold drink. Chemotherapy can make the mouth really dry, so having something they like to wet their whistle is a great pick me up.
I am not the sort of person to dance around awkward and scary things. If there is a chance that your friend will lose their hair then include in the bag a funny baseball hat or a really beautiful headscarf. It will raise a smile when they most need it in their treatment.
Most importantly, do not desert them. Keep treating them normally. Be there for them when things are tough. Remind them you are fighting right alongside them. Give them a gift to help them through the hard times that cancer treatments send their way. I hope you enjoyed these ideas for a gift for friends who have had a cancer diagnosis.
[Photo – Creative Commons Attribution – uberculture]