In her book, When a Parent Has Cancer: A Guide to Caring for Your Children, author and cancer survivor Wendy Harpham, M.D. stresses the importance of...regular routines.
She recommends additional creative solutions that provide a sense of connection and normalcy for children:
- Let children help you, but let them choose the activities – from bringing a glass of water or washing dishes to mowing the lawn.
- Carve out regular parent-and-me time when you are focused 100 percent on the child.
- Arrange celebrations to look forward to, such as an outing to the park before each new cycle of chemo.
- Encourage your children to do things that lift your – and their – spirits, such as making a greeting card to keep in your pocket all the time.
- Provide safe, non-judgmental time and space to share feelings and thoughts.
- Read books that address the issues. The Hope Tree uses friendly animals that help make the emotionally intense topics safe.
It’s natural for parents to worry about their children’s well being and want to remain active – despite being gravely ill – says Harpham. One of the simplest and most important ways to do that, she says, is to stop and listen.
Their responses may guide you in how best to remain involved on the days when you are physically able to do so.
[Excerpted from Stay Abreast blog. Click here to read complete post.]