Dr. Aabaji Thatte Seva Aur Anusandhan Sanstha
When cancer treatment ends, people begin a new chapter in their lives, one that can bring hope and happiness, but also worries and fear. No two people are alike. Each person has his or her own way of coping and learning to manage these emotions. It will take time and practice.
You’ll probably be concerned that the cancer might come back, and you might find yourself thinking about death and dying. The fear of cancer coming back (called cancer recurrence) is common among cancer survivors and can sometimes be quite intense.
Maybe you’re more aware of the effects the cancer has had on your family, friends, and career. You may take a new look at your relationships with those around you.
Unexpected issues might also cause concern. For instance, you might be stressed by financial concerns resulting from your treatment. You might also see your health care team less often after treatment and have more time on your hands. Any of these things might make you anxious.
Some people are better prepared for life after cancer than others. But everyone can benefit from help and support from other people, whether friends and family, religious groups, support groups, professional counselors, or others.
Going back to “normal”
You’ve been seeing your cancer care team quite often; now, suddenly, you don’t have to visit for many months at a time. When treatment is done, some people feel like they’re no longer fighting the cancer. Worries can set in. You might feel alone and lost without the support of your cancer care team. These people may have become an important part of your life. Not seeing them might make you anxious and sad.
You may also find that going back to your role in the family is not as easy as you thought it would be. Things that you did before your cancer are now being done by others. Maybe they’re not willing to give your tasks back to you. Or maybe you disagree with how others have done things, but are afraid to say anything.
For some people, emotions that were put aside during cancer treatment come flooding back all at once, and they feel overwhelmed with sadness, anger, or fear. Some of it may be the lingering side effects of treatment, but some of it feels as if your body and spirit are tired and need a long rest. It’s been a long time since you could just relax.