"I have cancer"…3 words we never want to hear from any of our loved ones.
A waterfall of emotions and uncertainty soon follows. What do you say? What do you do? You want to be there for them and support them, but how?
I've found myself in this position not once, not twice, but 3 times in my life. I know how it feels to be hit with these devastating words and feel like you're at a complete loss.
It's extremely difficult to see your friends or family in this tough position. You want to be strong for them, but it feels almost impossible to comfort someone going through a cancer diagnosis, when you're simultaneously dealing with your own feelings of devastation.
When you are a friend or a family member of a cancer patient, the emotional trauma you may experience can be significant. At times, it might become so intense that it almost feels as if you have cancer too.
When I found myself in this situation, I was at such a loss…I wanted to help and comfort my friend in any way that I could. I immediately started searching for a gift that would help ease some of the emotional pain that she was feeling…and make me feel less helpless as well.
But no gift that I found was good enough. Everything that I came across was either too cheesy or too impersonal…it just didn't feel right. I wanted to gift something meaningful that would help my friend through this difficult time, not just give her some generic teddy bear or bouquet of flowers.
The more I searched, the more frustrated I got. Finally, I realized that the meaningful cancer gift I was looking for didn't exist…and it was up to me to create the solution to this problem.
I ended up buying a blank journal from Anthropologie and hand-lettering different pages for my friend: pages to get your anger out, exercises for if you’re feeling scared, doodly fun pages, joke pages.
I had her friends, as well as random strangers write notes of inspiration for her inside the journal. I wanted it to feel personal, and I wanted her to know that we were going to help her through this.
I couldn't find the perfect chemotherapy gift, so I made it.
In addition to this, I also bought her a blanket and inscribed it with inspirational bible verses, quotes, and funny jokes. It was the perfect size to carry with her to her appointments and stow away in her bag if needed.
When I gave her the journal and blanket, she absolutely loved them. She took them to her chemotherapy appointments and the other women in the waiting room would ask where she got them.
When I heard that, I realized that this problem was a lot bigger than just me. Other people out there were also struggling with the same issue and I wanted to help them too. I started sending her with an extra journal to gift to a stranger.
Although I had found myself in an unfortunate situation, something good did come from it. I ended up creating 2 personalized cancer gifts, the Love Heals journal, and the Big Hug blanket…and now I can provide these gifts to help others going through the same situation I did.
These gifts are meaningful and powerful, but the best part is that these chemo gifts are actually just as therapeutic for the friend or family member to give, as they are for the cancer patient to receive.
I hope by giving one of these personalized gifts, you'll find a small sense of relief and peace. Read below to learn more about these special gifts.
The Love Heals journal is the perfect chemotherapy gift to give a loved one who has been recently diagnosed with cancer. More than just pages in a book, this "kit" comes with everything you need to create a beautiful, personalized gift.
The cover of the journal is lined in blush colored velvet and features a faux leather gold metallic closure.
Its small size (9"x7") is the perfect size to fit in a purse or bag, carry to appointments, coffee dates, or a quiet nook to get away and write.
Inside the journal, you'll not only find 160 journaling pages, 90 blank pages with space to write or draw, and 14 inspirational quotes and messages, but you'll also find 28 guided journaling prompts to help with all the feelings that come with cancer.
These prompts, such as:
"Make your Fabulist! What are the BEST things people have said or done for you?"
"It's never a good idea to be a bully, except today. Cancer has bullied you long enough, it's YOUR turn."
Will help your friend to connect with whatever they may be feeling, and getting those thoughts out onto paper.
Your friend or family member will also receive:
- 2 metallic sticker sheets
- 1 embroidered sticker sheet
- 2 small envelopes (retail therapy, and inspirational words)
- 3 gold paper clips tassels
- silver glitter washi tape
- plus, 1 embroidered fabric bookmark with purple velvet backing and tassels
These carefully curated and thoughtful details create a beautiful experience for your loved one every time they open their journal…and that's not even the best part.
Here's what makes this gift really special - Once you purchase your Love Heals journal, you'll first ship it to yourself to add on a few personalized touches before your friend or family member receives it.
The journal will arrive with simple step by step instructions that will walk you through exactly what you can do to add love and warmth to the journal, making it a unique keepsake for them.
Once you personalize a few key pages, you will gift the journal to your loved one and they will use it throughout their diagnosis. Having your thoughts and words with them throughout their chemotherapy and day to day appointments will help them find strength in a difficult time.
When someone you care about is diagnosed with cancer, it is an understatement to say that they will have a lot of emotions to sift through.
Having somewhere to sort out these confusing and overwhelming thoughts can provide your friend or family member a sense of relief and a safe place to process what they're going through.
Below are a few messages I received from women who gifted the journal, or purchased it for themselves:
“The journal came today and is absolutely beautiful - I cried when I opened it and read the pages. It’s perfect. My sister has a long journey ahead of her and we want her to know she is loved and supported. Thank you for creating such a beautiful journal. And, thank you for your prayers.” Karen M.
"The weekend together was so special! My sister Kathy, who has cancer, my sister Mary and sister-in-law Heather came together to celebrate Kathy and share gifts of support and love. There was laughter, tears, prayer and such special togetherness. Our theme was Butterfly. We chose 10 words, and gave Kathy gifts associated with each word. Your beautiful journal was our gift for Love."
"Just wanted to say thank you for designing this. I am a hobby writer with stage 3 lung cancer. This is just the type of gift I want to receive (or gift to myself). I wish I had found it when I was going through chemo.” Sarina L.
Click here to learn more about the Love Heals Journal
The Big Hug chemotherapy blanket is a luxurious grey knit lap blanket with glittering metallic thread that will wrap the ones you care for in love. The soft knit texture of the blanket will comfort your friend or family member during emotional and unpredictable times.
It was also designed with the user's lifestyle in mind. The blanket measures 28" x 40", and is perfect size to fold up and fit in a purse, bag, or to carry to and from appointments.
Each Big Hug blanket comes with a unique personalized touch - every cancer blanket comes with 31 knit holes where you can attach soft, velvet backed tags with personal messages, love notes, or inspiration, so they can see them when they need it most.
Before gifting your Big Hug blanket, you'll fill out each tag and attach them to the blanket. You can fill them all out yourself, or you can pass them around to others so they can add their own special messages.
Use a pen or fabric paint to share a personalized thought or message. This could be a poem, a drawing, an inside joke, a special memory, or whatever you think would make them smile.
6 starter tags are provided with the blanket, and you can always purchase more if needed. Each thoughtful tag is a priceless memory that your loved one can come back to over and over again as they go through their diagnosis.
Here's what some of my customers have said after gifting this blanket:
"My friend is on her 4th week of chemo and her blanket has been such a source of comfort for her. Where there is great comfort and purpose in something there is great opposition. You are making a difference!!!! It's not often you find gifts that mean so much during such a difficult time! We are sold on this gift and will give it over and over and over!” - Lisa
"This blanket really touches my heart! There truly isn’t anything we can do to make this journey easier except to give our love and support . This blanket is PERFECT! She has 2 children and loving husband so I’m so excited for them to have tags to write messages for her" Thank you for creating this love! - Nicole
“I am blown away by the beautiful quality of the blanket and the tags! I know the recipient of this blanket is going to be beside herself. She is getting ready to start chemo after next week and I am giving the tags to family and close friends to fill out before I give her the blanket. It is such a special gift and I am so happy I came across your website." Thank you - Kathy
In a time of grief, finding small moments of joy can get you through the hardest days. Some days will be harder than others, but knowing that you are able to help someone in even a small way can bring you a sense of relief while you come to terms with the reality of the situation you have found yourself in.
If you're looking for personalized chemotherapy gift ideas for a cancer patient you care about, the Love Heals journal and the Big Hug chemo blanket are the perfect combination of warmth and concern for someone you know going through cancer.
Click here to learn more about the Big Hug Blanket
Note: Either gift can be purchased individually, or you can follow this link to buy them as a bundle and save $28.