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It's difficult not living in the same state or same coast as my brother in NJ who was very recently  diagnosed with lung cancer stage 4. He has pneumonia and was recently released from the hospital with oxygen and home care for draining the liquid from his lungs. He is covid-19 free. He has strong daily family support ( wife, two sisters, niece,  step daughter) and a nationwide circle of prayer warriors and family members who care about him. 

In addition, I am trying to oversee his quality of life: research, treatments (blending eastern and western options), choice of physicians, medical appointments,nutrition, home environment, better lifestyle choices for him and his wife (she still smokes and 2 other people in their  one bedroom apartment smoke on the balcony of their home), other communication between supportive family members living near him, etceteras. 

Also I encourage  my beloved sister in-law to get counseling, but she chooses not to.  She's overwhelmed with caring for him.  Not smoking and not having people in the home who smoke  is not an option for her.  And I understand that the choice is partly due to her nicotine addiction and economics.

Furthermore, I face a conundrum regarding  my own need to travel (air) from West coast to East coast during the pandemic:  My father in GA is also not well and a dear uncle in NJ is in intensive care ( cancer, dementia, parkinsons). I feel a little overwhelmed.  I am a professor and writer on the job market and it is difficult to focus on my needs.  

Do you have suggestions for  supporting my own mental health? 

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That is a lot to be managing without a pandemic going on.  The Lung Cancer HELPLine is a good resource to help manage stress and anxiety: https://lungevity.org/for-patients-caregivers/support-services/lung-cancer-helpline  They also can be helpful with financial issues. 

 

There are grants available to people with lung cancer during this time. https://lungevity.org/media-releases/lungevity-launches-breathe-easier-emergency-response-fund-for-covid-19

Hopefully this is a good start for you.  If you need any other support, we are here for you!

 

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