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  • Writer's pictureBrittani Williamson

National Cancer Survivors Day 2024

Celebrated on the first Sunday of June, National Cancer Survivor Day is a celebration of life.

The day is established for cancer survivors, including more than 18 million survivors in America alone, to connect, share, and celebrate. Cancer survivorship is a unique experience in that it is often a joyful, gratitude-filled time, and a difficult, anxiety-producing situation all at once. 

For those of us fortunate enough to be finished with regular treatment, we are faced with a new set of circumstances to learn how to cope with. Cancer survivors have the potential to face widespread difficulties including long-term physical side effects, emotional side effects, financial strain, survivor’s guilt, and a myriad of other impacts.

This is a gentle reminder to prioritize taking care of you! Here are a handful of ways to do just that:

1. Move your body. The National Cancer Institute recommends 2.5 to 5 hours per week of

moderate-intensity activity, or 1.25 to 2.5 hours per week of vigorous activity. 

2. Eat nourishing foods, and in addition, avoid or cut down on alcohol use. Fuel your body the

way that it needs to be, and reach out to a nutritionist if you have specific questions about what

is best for you.

3. Rest well. The Mayo Clinic states: Avoid caffeine for at least eight hours before bedtime. Stick

to a regular sleep schedule. Avoid computer and television screens for one to two hours before

bedtime. Exercise no later than two to three hours before going to bed. Keep your bedroom

quiet, dim, and cool.

4. Reduce stress. Periods of stress are unavoidable, however chronic stress has the potential

for significant negative impacts in our lives. Things to keep in mind include: the foundational

ways to care for ourselves as mentioned above, setting and maintaining boundaries and being

able to say "no" when needed, and asking for help. Slow down and find quiet time for your mind and your body 

5. Try therapy. Therapy helps us to live well; it can assist in coping with physical changes,

managing fears, improving relationships, processing various emotions, along with so much


An additional way to celebrate National Cancer Survivors day is to help raise awareness!

Encourage everyone you know to learn how to give themselves self-exams.

Here are a few resources for breast cancer and skin cancer:

Learn what your "normal" is and pay attention to your body. Early detection truly does save lives. Reach out to medical professionals if you have any concerns, and get second opinions if you need to, as well. Take care of your whole self because the world needs you.

We fight to be able to live life, not just to be able to live. It is more than okay to be "happy,

hurting, and healing all at the same time."

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