Cancer Support Group Offers Hope and Help

NEW BERN, NC – The Cancer Committee of CarolinaEast Health System is offering the next series of cancer support group meetings focusing on the needs of the recently diagnosed cancer patient.            
   “Foundations for Healing” will meet six times over a six-week period in the CarolinaEast Oncology Center conference room on the CarolinaEast Medical Center campus. The group, limited to 10 participants, will gather at 1:00 p.m. for 60 minutes of hope, help and support. The first meeting of the new series will be held on September 30, 2010.            
   “There are a multitude of complicated issues the newly diagnosed cancer patient faces,” Keith Little, BCC, M.DIV, CarolinaEast Medical Center Clinical Chaplain. “These include anxiety, fear, crisis of self-identity, recovery, financial concerns and the significant impact cancer can have on family dynamics,” he explained.            
   “We lead each meeting with a concerted effort, an organized approach and, most importantly, compassionate guidance,” said Little. “We recognize the journey to recovery is much more involved than just treating the physical. There is a difference between cure and healing. We focus on healing and finding hope in the midst of our struggles,” he added.            
   Topics of discussion and areas explored include the importance of finding emotional support, how to seek new perspectives, accepting help from others, identifying strengths and dealing with the “new normal” that accompanies a diagnosis.            
   “A support group is a safe place to express emotions, be heard and understood,” explained Little. “Even though participants have been diagnosed with different types of cancer, the empowerment that comes from the conversation gives those at the table the courage necessary to move forward.” Attempts to answer the “'Why me?” very common question of the recently diagnosed cancer patient are made during this group. According to Little, cancer patients often feel hopeless and out of control and this group works towards helping the individual regain some sense of control.
   This is the fifth time this support group series has been offered at CarolinaEast. Following the culmination of each of the previous groups, Little said members were sorry to see it end. For participants to benefit fully from the support group, participation is limited to no more than 10 individuals per group. Interested persons must register in advance to attend. Please call 252-634-6200 to register and for more information.