The Gift of Time. CCGG2017 #24

Blogmas on the CancerCarerChats blog is a daily charitable christmas gift guide with a twist - each post will feature an idea for a charitable act.  Christmas is a time for giving whether it be for someone you know or for a stranger.  Take the time at this time of the year to do a good deed, just one small act can help someone who is less fortunate than you are.  
As a reminder, my mum was diagnosed with Stage IV ovarian cancer in March 2017 when I started this blog to raise awareness of the importance of early detection of ovarian cancer and my life as a carer.  I care for my mum, trying to ease some of the load on her and walk by her side on this journey.  It’s just as hard to watch someone you love go through pain, than to experience it yourself.


It happened, Christmas eve came and there's finally 1 more sleep till Christmas day!!!!

The presents should be wrapped under the Christmas trees, the last party will be had and the turkey (or your chosen Christmas Day fare) ready in the kitchen.  So if your gifts have not been bought now, then it's a last minute dash to the petrol station or Co-Op to scour the 2 shelves dedicated to Christmas sweets and chocolates.  However, what about something a bit more personal and to be honest, miles better.  Why waste your money on a token gift when there is a gift that you can give which either your parents, grandparents or loved one will cherish more.  

The Gift of Time

As a carer for my mother who has stage IV cancer, I can tell you directly when she was diagnosed in March 2017 and given the prognosis of 2/3 years left because of this disease, that ironically, when you are told that time is running out, that is when you need it the most.  You cannot buy time off a supermarket shelf.  It's the one thing that is not stocked by Amazon.  Which therefore makes it the most priceless gift in the world.  You may think this is a cop out for the last Christmas Gift idea but I can guarantee you, this is not easy and will be cherished far beyond that bath gift set or novel from Waterstones.  So how do you give the gift of time you may think?  Easy, but it's not so easy otherwise you would have done it already.  Here's how:
  • Put that iPad down
  • Switch off the laptop
  • Take your phone out your pocket and leave it by the side of your bed
We live in a highly digital age and are consumed by the masses of information available on the internet.  Trust me, my job is in digital.  A constant stream of content means we never have to be bored and there's ever more news trending, being posted to keep up with.  STOP!!  Converse with your family on Christmas day, listen to what they are saying and find out about their dreams.  Most importantly, have no regrets.  Tell a parent you love them, before it's too late.  Spend some time with a grandparent, while you still can.  Make a commitment to spend time with a sibling, doing something you both enjoy instead of making an excuse of not having enough time.  And it doesn't have to be anything extravagant like a weekend away, giving someone the gift of time is just that, give them your time instead of the internet because I can guarantee you, the world wide web won't appreciate it half as much as your family will. 
  • Ask your parents for advice about your life goals "I want to start a blog, what do you think?", "I want to change my job, what do you think?"
  • Ask a grandparent to tell you something about when they were younger "What presents did you get when you were younger?", "What food did you eat on Christmas day?"
  • Start to watch a Netflix series or a movie with a sibling
It doesn't have to be gushy and it doesn't have to be forced.  Sometimes, simply standing in the kitchen and helping someone peel vegetables, you can start a conversation and learn a lot about one another.  

The gift of time is the cheapest gift for Christmas but yet it can also be priceless.  It's the hardest to start off also but once you have a way in, it will be so much easier to spend time with someone that you love that it's the gift that just keeps giving.  So give it a try and be brave, have no regrets.  

Since the biggest gift for Christmas has been posted, this is the end of my Charitable Christmas Gift Guide 2017.  I do hope you've enjoyed it and more importantly, taken some of these ideas and spread some kindness in this world.  Remember, charity can be all year round.

Let me know which one of these gift guides was your favourite.  I wish you all love and peace on Christmas day.  Merry Christmas!

Symptoms of Ovarian Cancer
T – Toilet habit changes
E – Energy levels dropping
A – Abdominal pain/ swelling

L – Loss of appetite



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