We are well into breast cancer awareness month, and while it’s important to honor those who have lost their battle, it’s also important to talk about how to handle the hard journey of living with breast cancer.
We were joined by healthy lifestyle expert and founder of Pretty Wellness Caryn Sullivan, who has been on this journey herself. This is what Caryn hopes viewers take away from her segment:
There is hope – going through cancer (or other hardship) is devastating, but you don’t have to be devastated. This short guide and journal can hopefully help make that hard time a bit easier for the cancer patient, caregiver and friends.
Caryn was lucky and blessed to have three strangers fall into her life guiding her through the first few weeks of disease. Not everyone has that, so she wanted to share what she learned to hopefully eliminate some of the stress and help those touched by cancer.
Tips for Those Diagnosed:
- Get second opinions – Getting other opinions help better understand all the aspects of the illness. This can lead to less stressed and easier decision making as more options were vetted.
- Google is Not A Doctor – The internet provides a lot of mixed and incorrect information, which can cause stress. Gather a support team (friends) that can help do the research and navigate the internet so the patient doesn’t stumble upon scary data and stories.
- Cultivate a Positive Support Team – Figure out who can really foster a hopeful/positive experience. Let those people in and delegate duties including help including errands or communicating to others.
- Finding Joy in the Little Things – Smiling, laughing, finding joy all around is helpful with healing. Scheduling silly time with kids or family makes happiness a priority and can help get through the hard days.
Caryn was diagnosed at 31, three months after her wedding. It came out of left field and she remembers crying on day two thinking, “I’m supposed to be a newlywed.” The nurse told her, even though she had cancer, she could be happy. She then chose to look at life that way. She would have ugly days, but always found a little something to bring her joy and happiness.
Caryn Sullivan is a two-time breast cancer survivor, living with stage IV disease. She’s the founder of Pretty Wellness, author of Happiness through Hardship and proud mom of a ten-year old boy. Follow her on Instagram @PrettyWellness for daily wellness tips and healthy living resources.
Upcoming Public Events:
- Thursday, October 17 – 7pm – Fairfield U Bookstore – Event and signing
- Thursday, October 24 – 7pm – Barnes & Noble West Hartford – Signing