HEARING the news about Princess Kate last week was hard to hear! I was as nosey as everyone about what was going on and was bombarded with gossip and rumours.

I felt guilty when she felt she had to go public with what is such a personal battle. Being in the public eye must be so difficult. Saying that though, she is really good at ‘her job’ and is a credit to the country.

Kate isn’t the only person with cancer. I have several friends with this horrible disease. I am sure you and your family and friends may also be in this situation.  

In a world often fraught with the hustle and bustle of daily life, it's all too easy to overlook the silent battles fought by those around us. Among these battles, few are as formidable and challenging as the journey of those living with cancer. Every day, individuals facing this diagnosis navigate a maze of emotions, treatments, and uncertainties, all while yearning for understanding and support from those in their lives.

Being sensitive and kind to people living with cancer isn't merely an act of charity; it's an essential expression of our shared humanity. It's about recognizing the strength it takes to confront such a formidable adversary and extending a hand of compassion and support.

Somerset County Gazette: Trish Caller.Trish Caller. (Image: Trish Caller)

First and foremost, it's crucial to understand that cancer affects not only the body but also the mind and spirit of the individual battling it. The emotional toll of a cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming, ranging from fear and anxiety to sadness and despair. Thus, offering a listening ear and a shoulder to lean on can be immensely comforting. Sometimes, just knowing that someone is there to listen without judgment can make all the difference in the world.

Furthermore, sensitivity involves being mindful of the language we use when speaking to or about someone with cancer. Phrases like "battling cancer" or "fighting the disease" can unintentionally imply that those who succumb to cancer somehow didn't fight hard enough, inadvertently placing undue pressure and guilt on the individual. Instead, offering words of encouragement and support, such as "I'm here for you" or "You're not alone in this" can convey solidarity and empathy without placing unrealistic expectations on the person's journey.

Kindness, too, plays a pivotal role in supporting those living with cancer. Acts of kindness need not be grand gestures but can instead be found in the small, everyday actions that demonstrate care and compassion. Whether it's preparing a meal, offering to run errands, or simply sending a heartfelt note, these gestures can serve as powerful reminders that the individual is loved and valued.

Ultimately, the measure of a society's compassion is reflected in how it treats its most vulnerable members. By choosing sensitivity and kindness in our dealings with those living with cancer, we not only uplift individuals in their time of need but also cultivate a community built on empathy, understanding, and unwavering support. And in doing so, we reaffirm the inherent dignity and worth of every human life, regardless of the challenges they may face.

One of my friends has terminal cancer but no idea of when, months, years, decades possibly. So, learning to LIVE with cancer is really important.

She reached out to Macmillan Cancer Support, (https://www.macmillan.org.uk/cancer-information-and-support/get-help) and they have been incredibly helpful to her.

They are guiding her through how to get the most out of every day, travel, get out and about, make memories and have fun. Anyone could get run over by a bus tomorrow. A message for us all?

See you again in two weeks! Until then – Stay Safe and Be Kind.