When caring for his wife with myelofibrosis, Ed Bartholemy focused on making her life as fun and positive as possible, despite her limitations.
Being a caregiver to someone with a myeloproliferative neoplasm (MPN) — a group of blood cancers that begins in the bone marrow — includes providing both practical and emotional supports, explained Ed Bartholemy.
Bartholemy, who was one of the eight honorees during the 11th annual MPN Heroes® recognition event, was a caregiver to his wife, Nancy, who had myelofibrosis for 40 years before the disease went into remission in 2021 thanks to a stem cell transplant. As her disease progressed before the transplant, it became more difficult for Nancy to take care of herself and complete household tasks, such as cooking and cleaning.
However, another major aspect of cancer caregiving is just being a friend to the loved one with cancer and making their “limited world as fun and as good as it could be,” said Bartholemy, who is also a member of the MPN Research Foundation Board of Directors.
Well, a lot of (cancer caregiving) is practical. You know, there's things that the patient can no longer do, eventually I was doing the laundry and the cooking and all the household stuff, and also taking care of her medications and things like that. But I think the more important part of it really is being a friend and being a partner. And you know, her life was limited by her disease. So, we tried to make that limited world as fun as it can be, as good as it can be.
For more news on cancer updates, research and education, don’t forget to subscribe to CURE®’s newsletters here.