Day 8: Chemo Care Drive

I can’t believe that we are officially starting week 2 of #AdamsActs!! It’s been a strange month for me so far, to say the least. I am still feeling quite dizzy and out of it, and I am down about ten pounds. Despite having been called a fat cow multiple times in the hospital, I actually don’t have a lot of extra weight to spare at the moment… so ten pounds is a bit rough. I am still not cleared to drive, so I thought now would be a good time to kick off my plan for the rest of October.

In the past couple of years, I have collected items for various causes. One year I collected snack items for gift baskets which were then given to an organization called David’s Refuge. DR provides respite for parents and caregivers of children with special needs, long-term medical or terminal illness. The following year we did a blanket drive for homeless shelters. This year, I will be collecting items for people who are going through chemotherapy.

I will keep a bin on my front step where you can drop items off at your convenience (if you live in the Rochester area.) For those readers who live elsewhere, you can send me a private message for my address if you would like to mail items to be part of our drive. As in past years, anyone who is not a pervert is welcome to participate. I mean, I can’t just have pervs comin’ and going’ from the house willy nilly.

Here are some items that I would recommend:

  • Comfortable socks/slippers

  • Beanie, hat, head wrap or scarf made of soft fabric

  • Wrap, soft blanket or shawl

  • Travel pillow

  • Snacks

  • Travel size toiletries (toothpaste, mouthwash, hand sanitizer, lotion for sensitive skin, etc.)

  • Moisturizer (anything with calendula)

  • Gum, mints and crystallized ginger (to combat nausea)

  • Magazines, crossword puzzles, books

  • Journal

  • Paper organizer (to keep records and prescriptions in order)

  • Reusable water bottles

  • Chapstick

  • Peppermint or ginger tea

  • Headphones

  • Sleep mask

  • Earplugs

  • Nail polish (nobody going through chemo recommended this, but I don’t think anyone should ever go through hard things without an excellent base, color and top coat. If you need brand suggestions, I will happily oblige.)

  • Gift cards (I-Tunes, gas cards, grocery stores, restaurants and activities near hospital.) Even if these aren’t used right away, it gives the patient something fun to look forward to when they are feeling up to it!

  • Blank stationary or note cards

  • Subscriptions - Netflix, Amazon Prime, Audible, Hulu, etc. can help pass time.

Housecleaning and meal delivery services are also amazing gifts, but I am not about to be organizing stuff. I will just collect and distribute, because I know my limits. Still, I think a collection of these small, but essential items can go a long way to encourage people and alleviate some of the financial strain of battling cancer. None of these “extras” are covered by insurance, even though many of these items, like nail polish, are necessary for survival.

Quick instructions if you come to my house - you should know a few quick things.

  • There could be upwards of 100 children from the neighborhood scattered about the yard at any given time. They will almost definitely be wearing bicycle helmets, backwards and for no apparent reason. Whether they are actually riding their bicycles or not - the helmets will be incorrectly, unsafely and precariously dangling from their heads. 100% of the time. (Below are photos of my actual children. Please pray for their future.)

lond helmet.jpg
jay helmet.jpg
  • We have a small and poorly trained puppy who is super chill and lovely, until someone brings lotions to our house for cancer patients. Then she becomes an “excitable greeter.” Just, push through it. She is harmless and adorable. I am better at training people than pets apparently.

Happy Day #8 everyone. I hope to hear from many of you about partnering together to encourage men, women and children who have a long, hard fight in front of them.