Caregiver Support

Nancy Lynberg, Passionate Cancer Warrior

Married for forty wonderful years to the “love of her life”, Mike Lynberg, together they raised two wonderful sons, Chris and Matthew. Grateful for every single day of their lives, they were caught by surprise when they were thrust in the cancer world. In June 2010 Mike Lynberg was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer.

Not one to back away from a challenge, Nancy rolled up her sleeves and fought back with knowledge so that Mike would receive the best care available. Nancy became an advocate.

Nancy has advocated at the Senate and congressional levels to ensure that all patients receive appropriate radiologic scanning; to urge lawmakers to lower the age of colonoscopy screening; and to ensure that Medicare offers seniors the opportunity of covered colonoscopies without a co-pay, when polyps are found. As part of the patient support forum with Colon Cancer Alliance, she attends seminars on digestive diseases, patient empowerment, and learns about every new trial and treatment to continue her counsel of patients and their caregivers.

As a Caregiver to Mike during his journey, I often referred to this very important and life saving writing from Jo Horne (below). Remember, this is a marathon, not a sprint. Always put your oxygen mask on first.

Please feel free to connect with Nancy via email at [email protected].

A Caregiver’s Bill of Rights
by Jo Horne

I have the right:

To take care of myself. This is not an act of selfishness. It will give me the capability of taking better care of my loved one.

To seek help from others even though my loved ones may object. I recognize the limits of my own endurance and strength.

To maintain facets of my own life that do not include the person I care for, just as I would if he or she were healthy. I know that I do everything that I reasonably can for this person, and I have the right to do some things just for myself.

To get angry, be depressed, and express other difficult feelings occasionally.

To reject any attempts by my loved one (either conscious or unconscious) to manipulate me through guilt, and/or depression.

To receive consideration, affection, forgiveness, and acceptance for what I do, from my loved ones, for as long as I offer these qualities in return.

To take pride in what I am accomplishing and to applaud the courage it has sometimes taken to meet the needs of my loved one.

To protect my individuality and my right to make a life for myself that will sustain me in the time when my loved one no longer need my full-time help.

To expect and demand that as new strides are made in finding resources to aid physically and mentally impaired persons in our country, similar strides will be made towards aiding and supporting caregivers.