START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good

10 Simple Gestures of Kindness with Healing Power

  • 1 of 2
10 Simple Gestures of Kindness with Healing Power

Living with Triple-Negative Breast Cancer
(#12 in a series)

In my post on 10 Odd Things to Say to Someone with Breast Cancer, I said, “Trust me on this … the most effective and most appreciated gestures are the simple ones.” Seriously, if you’re ever wondering if you should pick up that phone, send that email, or bake some cookies for someone who is ill, please don’t allow awkwardness to stop you. Do it!

Allow me to share some simple kindnesses that meant the world to me.

1. My breast surgeon hugs me and my husband at every appointment. It feels genuine, and there’s a certain healing power in that.

2. One day my oncologist followed suit and spontaneously hugged me because he “admired my spirit.”

3. I received a postcard from the mail carrier I don’t even know. She’d heard from a neighbor that I had cancer and wanted to let me know that she cared.

4. One day I received an express package from an acquaintance halfway across the country. What could it be? Cookies. Beautiful, tasty cookies! The enclosed note said that she knew it was “kinda lame,” but she wanted to let me know that she was thinking of me. No, it wasn’t lame, I assured her. It was a perfect way to express a kind thought and I smiled the afternoon away. And we made short work of the cookies, too.

5. Like mystery elves, there are anonymous people who donate hand made hats and blankets to cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, and some who bring goodies like cookies and hard candies to share. These little treasures mean so much to the people receiving treatment. That blue crocheted shawl/blanket got me through some chemo sessions and will always serve as a reminder — not of chemo, but of the spirit of giving. Too bad the givers aren’t always around to see the recipient’s smile. When I’m better, I plan to do the same.

  • 1 of 2

Read more: Cancer, Conditions, General Health, Health, Women's Health, ,

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love


+ add your own
9:05PM PST on Dec 20, 2011

Thank you for sharing. This is a wonderful posting for those of us who never really "know" what to do for people who are very ill. I tie myself in knots trying to figure out the right time, and right thing! I feel more comfortable now about getting in touch.

11:46AM PDT on Jun 13, 2011

For any potential "mystery elves" out there, here is a site for chemo caps - it's called Head Huggers.
Head Huggers home page:
With knitting, crocheted and sewn patterns to be found here,

3:43AM PDT on Jun 3, 2011

My dear, I wish you all the best. I am deeply touched by your words and I will ask the Universe for you. Love, be safe, you are loved.

7:55AM PDT on Jun 2, 2011

Hi Ann, Your article brought tears to my eyes. I'm guilty of wanting to do things perfectly instead of just being
spontenious. You've made me realise that I should just DO IT and not worry about anything else. It's the caring that really matters. You really are inspiring.

2:15PM PDT on May 31, 2011

LoVe and Blessings to you!

4:59AM PDT on May 31, 2011

Helpful and inspiring, Thanks for giving those examples of kindness and what they meant to you. --All the best

10:16PM PDT on May 29, 2011

Thank you for the inspiring article. I know that I for one often hesitate to do a favor for someone because it might not be "just right" or I don't have time to "do it perfectly." But now I feel freer to just connect and do a simple kind thing. Thanks again.

9:02PM PDT on May 29, 2011

I have been procrastinating at knitting chemo caps ... but I shall try not to put it off much longer.
In my defence, I have been knitting blankets for the homeless, for the Blankets for Canada (an online national charity).

6:24PM PDT on May 29, 2011

I know that we already have cured any cancerous kinds but our govt keeps all away from us.

6:49AM PDT on May 29, 2011

Amazing, Healing power is jsut cool like that.

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Thank you for sharing.:

Too cute. Thank you for sharing.

One more tip: learn to think when you consume :)


Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.

site feedback


Problem on this page? Briefly let us know what isn't working for you and we'll try to make it right!