ANCHOR POINTE Audio Burst with Skip Orem

TRANSCRIPT.  This transcript is computer generated. There may be some errors, and the computer doesn’t understand we spell Anchor Pointe with an “E”



Step three is to get organized. Start a notebook or file or whatever the a digital equivalent might be. Medical team, phone numbers, notes, test results, treatment options. That information needs to be kept together in one place, easily accessible by you or your partner. That ongoing and constantly expanding. List of questions to ask your doctors right at the time you think of a question, write it down. You don’t wanna forget about it. Just write everything down. You will not be yourself mentally, especially during the early parts of this battle. Your partner’s there to help you pick up the slack. Step four, become an expert in your disease and its treatments. Get informed. There’s a natural reaction to Google your disease. I did it immediately after I got off the phone with a doctor and I could tell you from experience, if you Google your disease and then start randomly reading about it, it will freak you out. I did that big mistake. It made me even more depressed and scared. I thought I was a garner after randomly reading stuff on the internet about prostate cancer.

In reality, though, you more than likely won’t be able to stop yourself from going immediately to the internet. My advice is to try and structure where you go on the internet for information about your disease. Try this the very first thing, write down a list of questions you have and hope to find answers to on the internet. The first things on that list of questions will probably be things you wish you thought to ask your doctor. Perhaps you should hold off actually ask them the next time you meet with your doctors. Don’t worry, you’ll be in touch with your doctor a lot during this battle. If your doctor doesn’t give you the time you need. Force them. Start your list of questions and then think about credible sites on the internet, the Cancer Association, the American Heart Association. Every disease has a credible association on the internet. Go there first. Then you have all these very credible hospitals with full of information. I found great information on the Mayo Clinic website and for me, the Prostate Cancer Foundation was an amazing help still is. Make sure your consulting only unbiased, trustworthy sources when you do your research. For instance, if it’s cancer, start with the American Cancer Society or the National Cancer Institute. Stay out of chat rooms. They can be confidence destroyers and you need all the confidence in positive attitudes you can muster right now

As well as becoming an expert in your disease. Learn everything you can about treatment options. More than likely, you and your partner will need to make decisions about treatment options. Many insurance plans cover a second opinion if yours does use it. Even if you totally trust your doctor, there’s no reason not to get a second opinion. It’s another source of additional information and another source of valuable time with a healthcare professional. If you’re choosing between radiation or surgery as a treatment option, talk to the physician and healthcare workers in both of those areas. Find out as much as you can about the different types of treatments available to you. If you have treatment options, which option to go with will be the most important decision you’ll make during your fight against this disease. And one other thing from my personal experience, be careful with statistics. They can hell, but they can also mess with your head. Some people like lots of numbers, lots of statistics. I know I do. But then with this medical stuff, the numbers, they start to get real complex. And if numbers mess with your head, ask your doctor if they could use words like most or some in place of an actual percentage number.

There you have it everybody. Immediate first steps after being diagnosed with a life-threatening disease. Take control. Ask for God’s help. Find a partner, your personal medical director. Get organized and become an expert on your disease. Get these steps underway on day one immediately. My other advice would, well, as much as you can, my other advice would be to try to live your life as normal as possible. And remember this, you are so much more than just someone who’s now defined by your disease. You’re still who you were before the disease. Don’t lose who you are. It’s important and getting well as you’re able to lower stress. Take time to enjoy your loved ones. Listen to music, exercise in any way you can. Continue to enjoy your life, your family, your friends. Stay positive. Learn to rely on others even if that’s kind of different for you because you need people now. And then just two more things I want to talk about as it regards to staying healthy and and lowering your stress level.