Caring for Cancer Patients: A Sister’s Touch

Dedicated to a friend who excels at sisterly love and to everyone who provides care for cancer patients

A sister’s voice is encouraging.

gently asking questions

wisely emailing advice

faithfully calling and flying cross-country

tenderly expressing love

frequently assuring of prayer

A sister’s cooking is healing.

enticing menus designed

healthy choices selected

extra groceries purchased

juice-filled popsicles made

just-for-you dishes prepared

A sister’s gifts are personal.

classy colorful scarves

stylish attractive wigs

cheery bright pink lipstick

crisp white comfy t-shirt

soft pretty hospital robe

A sister’s visit is comforting.

finishing the laundry

answering the phone

driving to appointments

straightening the house

removing some worry

A sister’s good-bye is hopeful.

I’ll miss you.

You’re improving.

Food’s in the fridge.

I love you.

I’ll be back soon.

My friend supported her sister from the heart-breaking diagnosis of breast cancer, through arduous treatment, and finally to welcomed remission. Several cross-country flights, as well as frequent calls and text messages, provided moral support. Numerous practical gifts like nutritious juice popsicles, stylish wigs, clean laundry, full pantry, prepared meals, and a new robe made a very difficult journey a little more bearable.

Maybe we could lighten the load for cancer patients we know by using our own gifts and resources. Perhaps we could run errands, drive the person to appointments, mow the lawn, create a gift basket, or grill some extra hamburgers for the family. What a blessing each act of kindness would be!

Please share your ideas for acts of kindness to extend to patients and their families during long-term illness.

                   . . . serve one another humbly in love.

 –Galatians 5:13 NIV

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4 thoughts on “Caring for Cancer Patients: A Sister’s Touch

  1. Excellent suggestions, Jeannie!

    • Post Author Jeannie Waters

      Thanks so much, Glenda. Sometimes small acts of kindness can be a huge blessing to someone.

  2. Love your blog post, Jeannie! A sister’s love is so important and when that isn’t available having sisters in the Lord is like a kiss from heaven. I have a couple of suggestions to add…. When bringing a meal, ask in advance if the person who is ill would like for you to stay and eat the meal with them. I went through an extended illness when our children were small (ages 3 and 10) and while meals were greatly appreciated, months of isolation were almost unbearable at times. I longed for someone to stop and stay long enough to pray with me or share what was happening in their busy lives. Secondly, when one family member is sick, especially the mom, her biggest concerns are the needs of her children and husband. Praying for and encouraging the spouse of someone who is ill and keeping their children active within their church and group of friends is so important.

    • Post Author Jeannie Waters

      Jan, thank you for sharing these excellent examples from your personal experience. Asking preferences of the patient or spouse can help us tailor our help in ways that would bless the entire family.

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