Thank you Pfizer for sponsoring this post. Join Pfizer’s #InspirationLives initiative by sharing your story with the hashtag on Facebook and Instagram to support and inspire those who have been affected by cancer, and be sure to check out the LivingWith™ mobile app available via iTunes and Google Play!
When my husband and I first found out that my son had cancer, we were bombarded with variations of the same question from friends and family:
What do you need?
This typically led into the statement, “Well, let me know if you need anything!”
To be 100% honest, I could barely put 2 thoughts together, much less think of what I needed. For weeks (or months?), I felt like I went through the emotions. Even now, looking back, there are blocks of time that I feel like I can’t recall.
For this reason, I will be eternally grateful to all the people in our lives who did things for our family on their own. From meals brought to our home to shoveling snow from our sidewalk to financial assistance, we had so many people who stepped up and did things that my husband and I didn’t even know that we needed.
My husband and I deliberately decided not to begin any type of funding page, website, or public Facebook page for our son. Due to my son’s age at the time of diagnosis (2 years old), I had mixed feelings about sharing too much information or too many photos on a public page. I wish that there had been a more private way (yet easier than group texting) that would have allowed us to communicate with family and friends.
My son has been in remission for 2 years, but I still try to stay abreast of advances and information that is available for cancer patients. I recently heard of the LivingWith™ cancer support app available on iTunes and Google Play. As part of This is Living with Cancer™ Pfizer has launched LivingWith™, a free mobile app designed to help patients and caregivers manage life with cancer and organize important information in one place. I currently have several friends who are battling cancer, and I wondered how this app would be able to possibly be of assistance to them and the millions of others battling cancer. I downloaded the app version from Google Play on my phone to check it out.
Once downloaded, the LivingWith™ app opens with a screen that highlights the features of the app.
From there, the user must register. For those living with cancer (or the immediate caretaker of someone with cancer), choose the option at the top. Supporters register at the bottom and must have an invite code from someone living with cancer. So, this does mean that someone who wants to view only as a supporter will have to register and create an account, but this also provides privacy for the one living with cancer since the only ones who can access their information are those with the code. If dispersing the invite code is too much of a task for the one living with cancer (or the caregiver managing the site), this task can be delegated to a close family member.
After registering as a patient, the app allows you to choose your name, upload a photo and choose the cancer type for personalization. I did note that my son’s type (kidney) was not provided on the list, so I skipped this step, but most other cancer types were listed.
My favorite part of the app is the “Requests” section. It was difficult for me to ask for favors, and sometimes I needed a last minute favor but didn’t know who to call. It would have been nice to have a place to ask for favors for things I needed without calling a dozen people, sending out a group text, or asking around on Facebook.
The LivingWith™ app also has sections to record well-being and for keeping track of questions and test results.
Overall, the LivingWith app is a helpful tool for those living with cancer. I know how overwhelming living with cancer can be, and the LivingWith app allows many aspects to be gathered in one place.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.