When you are suffering from the shock of learning that you have serious or life threatening illness it is quite normal to worry and even feel panic and fear about what you are going through and what the future will hold for you.
You may find this hard to believe, but caring for others during your time of suffering can be very stimulating and satisfying. By helping others at this time of your own suffering you can speed up your own recovery. The more you can contrite on how you can help others, the easier it will be for you to cope as you begin to think less about your own worries.
If you are in hospital, take notice of fellow patients and see if you can talk to them or simply listen to them as they share their concerns with you. Occasionally you can actually do something more physical, like sharing a book or magazine. Introduce your visitors to them -perhaps your visitor may be able to do something for them e.g. going to the canteen or passing them something they are trying to reach.
I remember a fellow patient opposite me dropped his phone and was unable to get out of bed to reach it. I was in hospital because of the stroke, but was able to get out of bed, so I hopped up and got it for him. For the rest of his stay in that word, he talked and joked with me. He did not get any visitors and even the nurse said how he had changed for the better by having me as his ‘hospital friend’! I can assure you, while I was conversing with him, I was not thinking about myself.
I actually shared my crystal ‘guardian angel’ with another patient and this helped her through a night when she was sad and afraid. It can be really little things you can do that can make a huge difference.
This may not be easy to do, but it is certainly rewarding when you can be caring for others. In my book, ‘Thank God I Had a Stroke’ I mention a number of patients that I formed a relationship with while I was in hospital – some I did not even know their names. I wanted to share with readers and fellow sufferers just how heartwarming it is to be able to help others in a time of need and just how it can speed up your own recovery.
Tips and Hints
Remember to care for others and to help them when possible, EVEN when you are suffering and afraid. It will help your healing process as well as benefitting those you are prepared to help.