Cancer Care Packages: A Heartfelt Gesture of Love & Support

Receiving the perfect gift during times of illness and struggle can often feel like the light is returning after a long, cold winter. A handwritten note of encouragement or a check-in from a friend can help keep our spirits high. For anyone impacted by breast or another type of cancer, there is nothing more meaningful than knowing our community is holding us close and willing to help. 

There are so many ways to show our loved ones we care from afar. Making a difference doesn’t have to be an overwhelming task. Crafting a personalized care package is easy to do, and it’s a powerful way to show affection, attention and devotion to anyone going facing challenging life events. 

Start with Support

One of the most surprising costs of dealing with cancer care is the unseen emotional labor that many people will take on in silence. According to the authors of Coping with Cancer, Elizabeth Cohn Stuntz and Marsha Linehan, many people who experience breast cancer struggle with the  loss of independence. For many “go it alone” types, simply asking for support may be an uncomfortable and isolating experience. Yet, as anyone within the breast cancer community can attest, support is most definitely needed. Here are a few ideas that make great additions to any care package:

  • Prepaid gift cards to cover meal delivery services such as Uber Eats, DoorDash or Similar
  • Certificates for house cleaning, lawn care, child and pet care
  • Wash and fold laundry services in the local community
  • Online meal train scheduling for friends to contribute to

Stay Positive & Lead with Empathy

Any serious cancer diagnosis can shake the foundation of our core. When crafting a kit to send well-wishes, love and nurturing, it is important to allow space for positivity. While trying to approach a heavy subject without saying the wrong thing, it is always best to lean into our authenticity and empathy. As we explored in this article, What to Say When We Don’t Know What to Say, this practice requires strength and vulnerability. Consider including small tokens of affection that offer encouragement such as devotional books, letters from friends and family or photos of happy past memories. Most important is to center the gifts around the person in the treatment and provide what they need to help them get through it.

Sweeten with Surprises

Delicious snacks and sweet treats are like the icing on the cake of any care package! Chemotherapy and radiation may cause unpleasant side effects such as dry mouth, which can leave a metallic taste in one’s mouth. Top off the package with goodies to take to the hospital and treatment centers to make those long hours away from home more pleasant. Consider including the following:

  • Sugar-free hard candies such as lemon drops, lozenges or ginger to help ease nausea 
  • Chewing gum to help with dry mouth caused from treatment
  • Travel-sized, healthy snack packs for longer stays 
  • Hot/cold thermos to hold soothing tea or nourishing water

Make it Personal

Before a package is signed, sealed and delivered, take a moment to personalize the contents to make the unboxing extra special. Adding flare to the contents with hidden notes will let the receiver know you went the extra mile to put everything together. Inside jokes (when appropriate) can add much needed levity. Is there a celebrity crush who’s photo could be included within the packaging? What about confetti or stickers? Even a simple handwritten note will let loved ones know how much they mean. 

Our pick: Take Care Gift Set

Nothing is more personal than our health and wellness. Included in this set are 3 Alyx Organic Face Masks in Charcoal (also available in Mauve), plus the Everviolet Essential Oils & Hand Sanitizer Set. The Essential Oils are proprietary farm-to-bottle blends intended to offer calm and inspire empowerment – both necessary when facing illness. 

Care and Comfort

Cancer treatment may also include long days in cold and uncomfortable hospital rooms. Although everyone is different, it’s not uncommon for nerve damage and low red blood cell count to occur. Send warmth and comfort in the following ways:

  • A warm, cozy blanket (hand-made, if possible)
  • Our pick: The Calla Kimono Luxury and coziness all-in-one
  • Gripper socks to warm nerve-damaged feet and maintain stability when walking

A care package is a personal way to be present for the people we love most in this world, during moments when they are likely feeling alone, scared and uncomfortable. Such gifts can represent a gesture of hope, and a reminder that we are walking the journey alongside our friend or family member. Likewise, receiving a curated box filled with warm wishes, heartfelt words or trinkets and hand-selected goods can feel like a bright light in an otherwise dark time.

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” - Leo Buscaglia