Long term mesothelioma patient Tamron Little offers these reflections about how she copes with the fear of mesothelioma.
“To be told that you have cancer… creates a tremendous sense of fear. Having a cancer such as mesothelioma is hard on the person and their family members because it is a tough diagnosis.
“The fear of my cancer coming back used to haunt me every day. It got to the point where I would have nightmares about it and would wake up crying in my sleep.
This fear created a lot of anxiety, especially when I went in for my checkups. I would always get a lump in my throat and an upset stomach. The entire time while having my follow-up CT scans I would be praying hard – I mean hard! Once I heard the good news that I was still cancer-free it would feel as if a weight was lifted off my shoulders.
And then the thought would go from the forefront of my mind to the back. It was still there, but just not plaguing me as much as it did.
Coping with Mesothelioma Anxiety
“I searched for different ways to help me cope with these thoughts so they wouldn’t keep me from living my life. Here are a few things… to help combat the thought that the cancer will return.
- Be aware of your feelings and emotions and know that it’s normal to feel what you are feeling.
- Talk to someone about it and let them know how you are feeling. Join a support group.
- Journaling can help with releasing things that worry you or… that you want to get off your chest. I would suggest keeping a journal on your [bedside].
- Do something that will reduce your stress such as exercising, yoga or an activity that you enjoy.
“If you’re having the same kind of anxiety, be sure to integrate some coping techniques into your life. And be on top of your follow-up care. It’s so important to make sure you’re present at every appointment, test, meeting, etc. Being knowledgeable and informed about what’s going on with your health is half the battle.”
This is a condensed version of an article on the asbestos.com blog.
Picture ‘Woman leaning on a white table’ by Aioni Haust at unsplash.com.