Being diagnosed with cancer can be one of the most trying times of a person’s life, and not many things can alleviate the burden that treatment can create. While it’s a challenge to go on with day to day life and know that you have cancer, there is one small silver lining that can be uncovered during this period: free things.
While it sounds trivial at first, the list of free items offered to cancer patients is long and diverse. Nothing received for free can really make up for the fact that you have been diagnosed with a life-threatening disease, yet it’s these small things that can bring a smile to your face. Let’s examine some of the free items available to cancer patients and how they can affect your overall outlook on your prognosis.
Some Call It Swag
Whether you call them goodies, items, swag, or just stuff, the opportunities to receive free things are numerous when you are a cancer patient. The availability of free items might vary depending on the type of cancer you have been diagnosed with, but by and large, the most free items seem to be for patients with breast cancer.
A simple online search has generated multiple foundations and groups that support women during their fight through breast cancer. Some notable offerings come from Fighting Pretty, a box of goodies that include makeup, clothes, jewelry, and more. The organization was founded by a breast cancer survivor and makes sure to provide items to women that will help boost their self-esteem and ability to engage in self-care.
The American Cancer Society supports a series of nationwide workshops, also for women fighting breast cancer, titled “Look Good: Feel Better” which helps provide clothing and makeup. Aside from the obvious benefits of free items, some patients note they also love the free advice given by others in the group. Makeup tips seem to be one of the more memorable and appreciated outcomes, sometimes even more so than the free swag itself.
When it comes down to it, having cancer can present some day to day challenges that makeup and bling just don’t fix. Many organizations offer free wigs to those who are undergoing chemotherapy, as losing one’s hair can be an expensive challenge to overcome. Fight Club Survivor Boutique stocks a plethora of gently used wigs, scarves, and even mastectomy bras for women who are in treatment.
Services That Matter
Free things are always appreciated, especially when the cost of cancer treatment can make financial times difficult, but sometimes even more valuable can be the services that are offered at no charge. Cancer support groups have been known to make free vacations available to patients, knowing that a relaxing change of scenery can work wonders for the mind and body.
On the more practical side of things, nationwide organizations have been founded to help cancer patients with the logistical side of things. A large cost associated with treatment can be the expense of lodging for family members if you are being treated at a facility that’s far from where you live. The American Cancer Society offers a network of patient lodging programs, called Hope Lodge, that allow for free room and board for family members who are supporting you during your time of need.
What if you need to visit your doctor but don’t have the ability to drive and no one can take you? In order to continue with effective care and treatment, the Road to Recovery program connects cancer patients with qualified drivers so that appointments can be made. Just think about how much money this could save versus taking a taxi or hiring a medical ride service to drive you!
Other more lighthearted services include nationwide classes, workshops, and nights out through Gilda’s Club. With locations all over, patients, their family members, and even their caretakers can engage in fun movie nights or yoga classes to help put a focus on positive activities, and it’s all free.
Other incredible offerings found with a simple web search include companies that offer free housecleaning once a month for cancer patients, free nutritional supplements and discount cards for medications, as well as audio books and CDs. No item or service is too small to go unappreciated by a cancer patient.
The Overall Impact Of Free Stuff
The above descriptions sound delightful, and no one would turn down any of the services or swag that is available to cancer patients. Yet if you stop and think, there’s really a deeper meaning to all of the free items that have been discussed here.
Having cancer means that each and every day presents a new challenge, whether it’s undergoing another new treatment and hoping that this time it works or trudging along on time-tested chemotherapy. Although patients know this often has the most desirable outcome, the side effects on one’s body and mind can be harmful in their own ways. It’s this type of situation that really benefits from having free things available for use.
Ultimately, dealing with cancer is a long ordeal that can drain you financially, emotionally, spiritually, and certainly physically. A hug goes a long way, as does a smile or an encouraging word. Imagine receiving a free wig or makeup in the mail to help you feel like your old self again! The psychological impact of these free items is immeasurable.
If you have cancer and could benefit from the assistance of free items or services, reach out to the American Cancer Society or any organization you can find online. Individuals are more than eager to provide whatever they can to patients in need. For anyone who feels called to support these organizations, donations of items or money are always welcome. Some prefer to help anonymously and can do so through a group or charitable organization, while others want to make a lasting impression and can volunteer locally. Either way, the option of free things for cancer patients make a world of difference for them and their treatment.
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