Patients With Cancer, Caregivers Detail the Unexpected Lessons They Learned From Their Disease

CURE® surveyed its audience to gather insight into what unexpected lessons cancer has taught them. Here’s what they had to say.

Some patients with cancer have described the disease as life-altering.

Others have also highlighted the lessons they learned from their cancer, including a woman with stage 4 colon cancer. For example, she recently shared that how after her diagnosis, she learned to have empathy for other people in her life who had cancer.

A CURE® contributor also shared how getting diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer taught her the importance of self-advocacy and gave her a greater appreciation for the role oncology nurses play in medicine. 

To learn more about what unexpected lessons patients with cancer have learned from their disease CURE® asked its audience on Instagram, “what unexpected lesson(s) did cancer teach you?”

Rethinking What Truly Matters

“To not put off things that are important to you, to be grateful for the blessings you have, to express your feelings to your loved ones, to laugh, think positive thoughts and hand over the negative thoughts to the Lord. I have learned many lessons through this journey. (I) look at recurrences in the eye and I think you picked the wrong person to deal with because I have my faith, family, and love to give a good fight.” - Debbie Herman

“That people who I thought were good friends, turned out not to be friends at all. But I have since met many awesome new friends.”- Gogs Gagnon, a prostate cancer survivor.

“This journey has taught me to open my mind to what, and who, matter. Sometimes I feel like side effect(s) of cancer and treatment cause new issue(s). I have my pity party and then get up and enjoy this life I have. Today, I went on a beautiful three-mile walk. My feet hurt but that pain reminds me that I am (alive) and did go for a beautiful walk.”

Gratitude and Mindset

“(To) truly appreciate every day.”- Brittney Piper, a woman whose two children were diagnosed with medulloblastoma, the most common type of brain cancer in children.

“Only people who have gone through the cancer journey know what it is really like and the feelings or pain you might entail after treatment and as a survivor. But still happy to be alive.” - a patient with lung cancer.

“That I am stronger than I thought!”- Debbie Konrad, a patient with lung cancer.

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