Treatment turned your life upside down? Get organized with the CanPlan Cancer Planner ($44.95). Sharon Kim designed this comprehensive system after her mother’s endometrial sarcoma diagnosis threw their lives out of whack. Undated calendar pages allow you to track your treatment, side effects, tests and results, and well-being up to a year. Blank pages give you space to record your reflections. Special inserts for appointments, treatment options and journaling will help anyone feel more on top of their lives during a difficult time.
Save time and effort with a meal-prep delivery service such as Freshly, which offers healthy cooked meals you just have to heat and serve. Prices start at $8.99 per meal, and meal plans cater to vegetarian, gluten-free, high-protein and paleo diets. You can customize the number of meals you receive per week and put the service on hold. Or give ready-made meals to someone who could use them with a gift certificate.
“Feed a fever, starve a cold, but what do we do for cancer?” wonders Karen Babine in her memoir All the Wild Hungers: A Season of Cooking and Cancer ($16, Milkweed Editions). To cope with her mother’s rhabdomyosarcoma diagnosis and help combat the wasting that followed chemotherapy, Babine prepared fantastical meals. Her collection of essays written during her mother’s treatment are meditations on sickness and healing and on food as medicine, as well as a tribute to her mother, who died before publication.
Take your medical devices along wherever you need them in the Kova Bag ($59.99), a small washable tote that helps you feel more like yourself while in treatment or after surgery. Designed by Angie Smilgius after seeing her sister Jennifer undergo multiple treatments for melanoma, Kova Bags are light, easy to carry and hold up to three 3.4-ounce postsurgical drainage bulbs or other medical devices, along with smaller items.
A clean home is a lovely gift—especially when it’s free. Cleaning For A Reason offers two free monthly house cleanings to people in treatment for cancer. The organization partners with local services across the United States and Canada and has served more than 33,000 people since 2006. Friends and loved ones can also apply on behalf of the person in their life facing cancer.
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