The joy of giving

Life has its way of teaching certain things. Issues related to cancer patients had been bothering me for a while (well, after I was diagnosed and began treatment for cancer). Prior to this, no more thought was given to this than for victims of any other illness.

And look, what a transformation there has been. I cannot stop thinking about the challenges faced by the cancer victims and how they can be supported to cope with this alteration in their lives.

To name a few, there are the issues of finances, further prevention (to whatever extent possible) of the disease and not to underestimate the importance of emotional support, which compels me to write this particular blog.

Having seen a volunteer in action and also having had the opportunity of volunteering informally as a caregiver for cancer patients for a while (this had to end as the rules of the hospital allow ex-cancer patients to volunteer only after a year from the completion of the therapy), I have realized the necessity of caregiving for cancer patients.

It isn’t short of a miracle what a few positive words and a listening ear can do for a cancer patient. It is sheer joy to see a despondent face turn a little brighter.

Though, for some, it takes more than just a few words to bring some cheer, some are shy to share their burden that is weighing them down. Eventually, I have seen such people lighten up as well.  And what a joy it is – to see a smile on a face that looked worn with concern and despair and to be able to steer the thoughts towards some positivity.

This has also propelled me to make an appeal to people to take time out to volunteer themselves as caregivers/counsellors, even if for a few hours a week, especially, for patients with ominous illnesses like cancer. The patients need them too apart from the doctors.

The joy of giving is its own reward!

Thanks for reading.

(Incidentally, October 2-8 is celebrated as the joy of giving week in India.)


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