good things that people can say

there is a thread on here about the bad and stupid things people can say.

i was wondering what good things people have said that have helped. I have not told many people but the good ones were.

oh shit, that a real blow,so what is the next step.

bugger–lets go and get drunk

does that mean we have to shave our heads in sympathy at our next gig (from by band of very young boys)

not many i know but i am at the early stages.

My boss said ‘don’t worry about sick pay’.

Think this is a case of actions speak louder than words - I was dx just before Christmas and am on full pay until the end of August and half pay for a further 3 months!

“That sucks.” How very true, and got a big hug in return.

“Oh.” accompanied by a stunned expression and followed by a few seconds of empty silence. Boy, did I know how they felt!

Friend found out the news when she saw me bald.

Friend: “Oh crap. I think I’m going to cry”
Me: “Please don’t, you’ll set me off again”
Friend: “Have a hug”

Job well done.

I told lots of people by email as I thought I would cry if I told them in person.

My oldest friend (who I have known since I was 2 years old) emailed back the following:

“I have always so admired you so much for how you have dealt with what life has thrown at you. You are already a superwoman in my eyes, so I guess it is time to throw on the cape one more time. If it helps shoulder the burden a little I hope you know there are friends here who will do anything to help you through it.”

Followed by emails asking if he could come and visit as soon as I was ready for visitors.

That really gave me a boost! And I do don my imaginary cape now when off to any appointments!

Oh my god! I have not cried yet but that email nearly did it for me.

Yes I told people by email. I considered Facebook but there’s people on there who are not that close and you accepted their friend request because it was rude not to. I think it was a good idea because then they could react to the news without you watching them. So they did not have to cover anything up. And then they have time tonword and reword a reply.

Unfortunately lots of people do not use e Internet so it had to wait til I bumped into them

Best comment I got was from a friend who hugged me and whispered in my ear, “I’m sorry…I don’t know what else to say; shall we open a bottle of wine?”

On the morning of my op my friend arrived to take me into hospital she walked through the door and said ‘Come on girl, gird your loins, chin up, here we go. I’m with you all of the way!’. And she has been and still is, every single step.

It was just what I needed feeling as I did that morning, terrified, panicky and very lost.

What an amazing friend she is.

Jen, like you my friend is there every step.

My best friend of 24 years, who is single and lives 250 miles away, when I told her of going for inital consultation before diagnosis, she insisted on booking day off work, driving ooop north to come with me then drive home that evening - i told her it wasn’t necessary and there would be a lot driving and waiting around for her, she replied… not a problem I’ve put them down on eHarmony (dating site) as my hobbies…

I was dx 2 days before goinng skiing and same friend warned me not to do a particular black run (quite difficult) that is my nemesis in a resort I’ve been to a few times and I freak each time I attempt to do it (only done it once), I told her after my diagnosis that I had to do it this time (didn’t have any results then) - she then replied, you’ve got cancer, that is no reason to throw yourself off a bl**dy mountain … and I chickened out again - next time!

She came up to take me for my second FECcing last week as she ‘wanted to see what all of the bl**dy fuss was about’ in the nicest possbile way.

She comes oop north every 2/3 weeks or so to annoy the hell out of me still… she was always the needy one and even when I’m feeling rough I still have to feed and water her…and she is coming back this weekend - wouldn’t have her be any other way though…

Hi Beverlie.

Your friend sounds just like mine.

When I was dx I said that when I was fit enough I was going to learn to swim.

The fact that I am terrified of water, to a ridiculous degree, made that a huge decision for me but I felt that I’d found something which terrified me more than water and so I would use whatever strength got me through BC to learn to swim.

I booked the first lesson, the whole pool just for me, £30 for half an hour because if there’d have been anyone else in the pool I definitely couldn’t have got in and I needed an instructor with me in the pool so that there was someone to hold on too and pcik me up when I sank!!

I cried for the whole £30’s worth, absolutely terrified beyond belief (wimp). Who had taken the day off work and was sitting in the viewing area also crying, my friend Kerry. What a girl!!

this is a lovely thread - cheering and moving all at once!
I can’t remember all the good things that have been said - first dx in 1997, but one friend bought me a smiley face balloon when i was first ever n hospital and said ‘we WILL be f*cking positive’ and we were of course! This time round as well as fab friends, I was bowled over by (now adult)nephews and nieces who just took for granted I’d be up for whatever I had to do, so many emails to Aunty Mon. I much prefer people to take it on the chin with me, prefer swearing to weeping.
I was made to understand how lucky I am in love, in all ways.
Hope we all are xx

Jan, you’re right, your friend does sound like mine too, and are you still a non-swimmer or did you dig deep…

My friend has said recently, you can get rid of your boob, your hair and your sanity, but at the end of all this unfortunately, you’ll still be stuck with me…

My younger sister who had chemo for BC last summer told me one piece of info before my first treatment that made me smile (and prepare)… she had a raging thirst after her first treatment, drank loads and wet the bed twice in one week (she never told me at the time) and told me to sleep on a towel just in case… I didn’t get a raging thirst thankfully…

Daisyleaf, I agree, have used a few choice words recently (and I was no stranger to them before - bit of a gutter mouth) and found taking it on the chin with close friends helps, as does blurting on here too…

Hi Beverlie

Yes I made it in a miracle 4 months I learned to swim!!! I now swim 2k a week. I’m still terrified of water however, but have learned how to conquer my fear.

Kerry who hates swimming, because she gets her hair wet, came with me to the pool and numerours spas until I had the confidence to go on my own.

Kerrys should be issued free on the NHS!!!

We can also swear for England when the need arises. And then laugh like hell!!!

I have one friend who gives the most amazing big hugs… and she’s learnt to conquer her fear of computers and Facebook so that she can send me “hugs” when we can’t see each other. She’s not SAID much, but the feeling’s there and helpful. I try not to swear, but it’s quite helpful for friends who don’t mind to say “this is cr**” (what sort of a double standard is that??) I also love flowers… bits from the garden, any flowers. I have not been without flowers since diagnosis mid Feb (and I haven’t had to buy any)… I think that’s amazing… Best last week - a colleage I don’t know VERY well came to have a cup of tea. I was having a bad week. She stood on the doorstep and said “I have a plan. YOu can say no, but my plan is to take you out for afternoon tea - to my house”. No infection risk, and she’d got amazing scones, clotted cream, the china cups and saucers, all the bits. How thoughtful - “what does Jane need?” Fab… sometimes it’s the actions more than the words isn’t it?

The late and great IBC survivor and author Mollie Ivans said,

“I don’t think cancer gives a rat’s ass if I have a positive attitude or not. But, it just makes ME feel better to have a good attitude.”

I like that one :slight_smile:

“What can i cook for you” and then meals arrive filling the freezer with instant meals for OH to heat.

“Where do the kids need to be and when?” from one of the childrens teachers. Did not know her well but knew of secondary diagnosis nd passes our door. So, she takes the kids to school nd my eldest baby sits for her in return.

Its specific offeres of real help that is great not ‘whatever i can do’

Sadie Xx Xx

OOoh I love it if people either take me out to eat or invite me to theirs for tea :slight_smile: Thats just a huge help and I really appreciate it.

After I told my diagnosis to my friend who lives in the next street, she was desperate to do something. I was having my mastectomy in the middle of December and she phoned one evening saying I know what I can do. She invited me, my husband and two children to her house for Christmas dinner. It was delicious and well appreciated.

Another friend who lives hundreds of miles from me and is a wee bit off centre in her life kept sending me texts while I was in hospital. One morning her text said -
“Good morning Vietnaaam!!! Do they still do ward rounds? Hope you get good news about going home. R U a good patient and more to the point will John’s (my OH) nurses uniform still fit him”?

When I replied that I was a bit fragile after looking for the first time at my newly flat chest with its swelling, bruising and bloody plasters she replied

“You are allowed fragile with a capital F. Men get medals 4 less. Going to make French toast and bacon yum. Hope you get home this weekend.”

I just love the way she writes whatever comes into her head.
When I got home I got those outrageous funny cards with the line drawings (and often sweary words) from her every few days.

I appreciated all the flowers and cards from people but Fiona (friend above) just got it right with me. She cheered me enormously.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from this ‘episode’ is that I will be a better friend in future. I was one of those crappy friends who never knew what to say in times of crisis, best I could come up with was ‘just let me know if I can do anything’. I think it was partly cos I had this pretty easy life, no big tragedies, so had reached middle age with little experience of life’s really crappy moments. Well that’s my excuse.

Most appreciated comment was from my cousin who I’d grown up with - you’ll be fine, you’ll be fxxxng fine!!! And I will. Cursing does seem to tick a box!

Great thread!