Gifts; what to give when someone is diagnosed with cancer


When someone you love is diagnosed with cancer you want to help. There are so many ways to help but it’s sometimes hard to know what kind of help is going to be the most impactful. There is the “let me pick up your kids after school” help. There is the, “I am bringing over several frozen meals to have when you need something for dinner” help. Sometimes that kind of hands-on help isn’t possible, but you can still let your loved one know you care. I have several suggestions for gifts you can give your loved one affected by cancer to let them know you are supporting them and thinking about them even if you cannot always be there physically.


Send a candle. Send some sunshine. Glassybaby makes hand blown candles that come with a message. The sunshine candle, for example, reads “clouds come in Seattle, smudges of gray erasing the blue. Sometimes they linger long, but then sunshine brings blue back, lovelier even than before.” Get yourself a candle too and light it every time your loved one is getting their treatment. This can bring you together even if you are miles apart. Check them out here.

Rose quartz is the stone of healing. I learned this when Kendra Scott visited our clinic and donated jewelry to patients undergoing cancer treatment.  More recently, I was given a rose quartz bracelet while attending a yoga retreat. I wear my bracelet to inspire healing and as a reminder to promote peace and healing in my own life. Getting your loved one a rose quartz bracelet or necklace that they can wear as a reminder that you are with them, thinking about them and sending healing vibes their way, is a great gift.

Recently, when a friend’s cancer returned, we, her dear friends, rallied around her and appointed ourselves her “herd” and adopted the elephant as a spirit animal to remind her she is supported by a herd of people who care for her, will lift her on the tough days, and laugh with her on the good days. Many people chipped in and bought her this gold elephant necklace. The elephant theme took off, and she received a homemade elephant stuffed animal, an elephant bag, a water bottle with an elephant on it, and other things. Her herd inundated her with elephants, representing love and community. You can borrow our elephant theme for your loved one or come up with your own. Let the community know and then when you see something that relates to that theme you can send it to your loved one.

A journal is the perfect gift for someone recently diagnosed with cancer. There is an overwhelming onslaught of thoughts and feelings when you get diagnosed with cancer and journaling is a helpful and healthy way to get it all out. Pick a journal with a special meaning or message like this one, which I recently purchased for a friend.

Send a mix CD. An old friend from high school recently posted on Facebook asking for suggestions of favorite songs to listen to while running. She was training for a marathon and was compiling music to help get her across the finish line. A cancer journey can be a lot like running a marathon – there are times you think you might not get to the finish line. Send music that will lift the spirits and keep your loved one’s feet moving at mile 19.

Buy your loved one a diffuser and a few essentials oils. See my friend’s Clia’s piece on the benefits of Essential Oils. Beyond adding aroma to a room, essential oils have so many benefits. The diffuser will disperse the scent and fill the room with the oil’s natural fragrance. Try Lavender for relaxation or Peace for promoting inner balance. My bestie recently sent me a diffuser with a note attached that read “Take Care of You!” Love her, love this gift!

A journal I recently purchased for a friend with Cancer.

A journal I recently purchased for a friend with Cancer.