Wednesday, February 8, 2012

GUEST POST- Beating Cancer Through Style and Beauty

Hey everyone!  Sorry I've been gone for so long!  Today I'm bringing you a guest post from Jackie Clark, who does outreach for the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance.  I know I've been close with people who have had cancer and watching them go through each process it heartbreaking.  I feel as though many times we don't realize how big a difference confidence and feeling beautiful can make in women who have cancer, who have lost their hair and maybe a lot of weight.  That is exactly what this post is about, thanks Jackie!  

The Confidence Factor: Beating Cancer Through Style and Beauty
By: Jackie Clark

A cancer diagnosis always comes with emotional challenges. It can cause depression, anger, anxiety and loss of self-confidence. This is especially true when the disease or its treatments dramatically affect your physical appearance. Hair loss or surgical alterations can cause enormous stress. Cancer-related anemia and fatigue can also make you look and feel tired. These things can be disheartening to the woman who prides herself on her appearance.

Negative emotions are not healthy. They have a detrimental effect on cancer and practically any other disease you can name. A huge part of winning the battle against cancer is keeping your emotions and outlook positive, and this includes feeling positive about how you look.

While many treatment-related changes in appearance are temporary and expected, life does not need to be put on hold while you wait for things to return to normal. It may seem that something as serious as dealing with cancer should make physical appearance a trivial matter, but this is not true. Appearance is a two-way reflection of well being that holds the potential to enhance recovery.  

As any fashionable woman knows, the right clothes, makeup and accessories are essentials that can transform your look, and transforming your look can transform how you feel. There is no reason that you can’t feel beautiful, empowered, confident and feminine despite a cancer diagnosis. You may be tempted to let your appearance go if you are not feeling your best. Don’t give in to this. Something as simple as feeling good in your own skin causes chemical changes that have positive effects on your immune system, brain and nervous system. This gives your body a winning edge in pain management, formation of new cells and recovery from tissue damage.

Granted, it is easier to tell someone to just dress up and feel better than to actually do that with a cancer diagnosis hanging over your head. However, with every adversity comes an opportunity to dare it to stop you. Looking your best despite cancer is a call to arms. Your clothes, accessories, makeup, jewelry, perfume, creativity and your own natural beauty are your weapons.

If chemotherapy for breast cancer has taken away your hair, you can enjoy a temporary obsession with hats, scarves and gorgeous earrings. If you are too weak to walk after undergoing mesothelioma cancer treatment, sit on your couch and wear those five-inch stilettos. At least they won’t make your legs sore this way. If your skin is pale from anemia, try out the latest in bronzing makeup products. Do, buy and use whatever makes you feel beautiful.  All women with cancer are beautiful, and you should showcase this– for both the world and yourself. 

Thanks again to Jackie for this inspirational and informative post!  I hope everyone has a wonderful day!