Tis the season for gift giving and who better to give you advice about what to buy your cancer-y friends and family than Grancer?!
Below, I will share with you some ideas to help you get through this hectic gift-giving onslaught. Please also note that gifts listed with an * are presents you could also give to me. Just because I am humbled by cancer and have a newfound perspective and gratefulness for my life doesn’t mean I don’t like swag. I LIKE SWAG.
Grancer’s Breast Cancer Gift Giving Guide 2016:
- Cute button-up shirts one size bigger than we would normally wear. Button-up because there is always something going on with the tots that require easy access and bigger because of possible drains, swelling, or ‘the chemo 15.’*
- Sugar candy. Our taste buds have been compromised, but sweet candy usually tastes pretty good. As long as you are gift giving, buy the expensive stuff from a hoity-toity boutique candy shop. Diabetes panic can wait. Let’s just get through cancer first, m’kay?
- Ice/hot packs. This might sounds like a weird gift, but going through chemo, or anything that futzes with your hormones, causes wicked hot flashes. Body aches and healing often warrant a cozy warm compress.
- Satin pillowcase. Luxurious and useful. Comforting as your hair falls out and feels great on a bald head.
- HATS. Duh. If you are someone who knits, a hand-made hat is always a treat. Warm and cozy. Soft and machine washable. Something you would feel comfortable sleeping in is a good standard of measure.
- Gift certificate for fancy eyelash extensions. Such a pleasure and a treat. She is already beautiful, but she will feel beautiful with enhanced lashes.*
- A night away in a nice, local hotel. She may not be moving around much, but her body is working like hell to cure and heal itself. She can’t have massages or facials because her body is all sorts of hacked up and unbalanced, but she can sleep in a cushy bed someone else made up and take naps in silence.*
- Earrings. Bigger, fun, fashion-y stuff. You know, to compensate for the hairloss.*
- Donations to her “How-Stella-Got-Her-Groove-Back-After-Cancer-Vacation” fund. Perhaps a group of you could get together and give her something aspirational like an airline gift card or gift her your hotel points. After going through the bullshit that is treatment, having a vacation to look forward to on your calendar is HUGE.*
- Eye mask. She will need to rest when the sun is out or lights are on. Having a soft, and/or fun eye mask will come in very handy.
- Big plastic cups with straws. We need to stay hydrated and sometimes having a pretty cup with an easy access straw can make all the difference.*
- A subscription to Netflix or Hulu. Cancer brings binge-watching to a whole new level. I watched most of seasons 1-4 of Scandal during my drug-induced mastectomy recovery. Do I remember most of it? No, no I don’t, but I enjoyed it at the time.
Grancer’s list of gifts NOT to give her this holiday season:
- Manicures. If she had chemo, her fingernails are shot. No manicure could fix what she is working with.
- Savory food basket. Her tastebuds have probably changed or if she is currently in treatment, she might not want to eat much.
- Things that say “Survivor.” This is a very touchy subject. Some women are very proud of this term. Others find it inaccurate or even offensive. Just save your cash and skip it.
- Pink things. See #3
- Candles. Strong scents are often not tolerated well during treatment.
- Inspirational posters or plaques. They can be presumptuous or even intimidating.
- Pants of any kind. Let’s not make her feel worse about her changing body, shall we?
- Booze. She should not be drinking on her meds. If she is lucky, she has a medicinal marijuana license and a bucket full of prescription meds. She is all set in that department, thank you very much.
- Adult coloring book. Don’t get me wrong, these are cool, but she has probably already gotten 10.
- Anything that requires assembly. That is just mean.
Love everybody’s favorite reindeer- GRANCER (screw Prancer and Dancer)