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16 Gifts of Gratitude for Caregivers of Cancer Patients

The relationship between a cancer patient and their caregiver is an intense, important and emotional one. Cancer caregivers are often a spouse, friend or family member of the person diagnosed, though sometimes a professional agency takes on the responsibility. No matter who your caregiver is, you want them to feel your gratitude during the holiday season and beyond.

Showing your gratitude to your caregiver is important, and can help them understand just how meaningful the work they do is. We’ve compiled a list of gifts for caregivers that will help them feel valued, supported and loved as they continue their care.

Something Delicious

1. Coffee Care Package

Caregiving can sometimes mean late nights and early mornings. Gifting your caregiver a care package stocked with everything they need to make and enjoy a cup of coffee can help them feel appreciated and energized. Choose a basket to put everything in, then fill it with coffee-related items like gourmet coffee grounds, flavorings, a mug or thermos and a Starbucks gift card for mornings when they’re running a little late.

2. Meals

When caring for others, caregivers still need to take time to care for themselves. Helping them with their meals can ease their stress and make sure they have a delicious, nutritious meal ready for them at the end of a challenging day. Gifting a meal is also flexible: You can take them out to eat, have food delivered via a meal delivery service or cook a meal yourself and give it to them in a reusable container.

3. A Water Bottle

Drinking water every day is a necessity, but it’s easy to get so busy that you sometimes forget to drink enough. Make sure your caregiver is taking care of themselves and staying hydrated by giving them a water bottle. You can even personalize the bottle with their name or have a fun, encouraging message engraved on the outside.

4. Baked Goods

Everyone loves — and deserves — something sweet. A baked good from a local bakery, or even something baked at home special from your family, is a great way to let your caretaker indulge in something delicious.

Something Sentimental

5. Printable Thank You Cards

A greeting card is a classic way to say thank you. Caregiver-specific cards such as the downloadable ones we’ve included below can help your caregiver feel loved and appreciated for the specific work they are doing to help you. Write a sentimental note inside and they’re sure to cherish the gift.

Downloadable thank you card for caregiver with a bouquet of flowers

Download the “There isn’t a thank you big enough” greeting card here.

Downloadable thank you card for caregiver with angel wings

Download the “Because of you, I believe in angels” greeting card here.

6. Caregiving Books

There are many people out there who are in caregiving roles, whether professionally or for a family member, who have written books about their experiences. These books can provide advice or community for your caregiver as they navigate your care. Gifting your caregiver a caregiving book or a general cancer-related book helps them know that you empathize with their experiences as well. We’ve included a few possible books to give your caregiver this holiday season.

  • “The Caregiver’s Challenge: Living, Loving, Letting Go,” by Maryann Schacht

  • “Daily Comforts to Caregivers,” by Pat Samples

  • “Things I Wish I’d Known: Cancer Caregivers Speak Out,” by Deborah J. Cornwall

7. A Journal

Processing emotions is necessary for anyone, but especially those who are caregiving for people during a cancer diagnosis. The heaviness of any diagnosis, including mesothelioma, can be hard on a caregiver — and they may not know who to turn to for help. Encourage your caregiver to write down what they think and how they feel by giving them a journal.

8. Hobby Related Gifts

With caregiving, it can be difficult to strike a healthy work-life balance. Just as mesothelioma doesn’t take breaks, caregivers might feel they need to be on call at all times. Encourage your caregiver to do something they enjoy by giving them a gift related to one of their hobbies. If they like to sew, get them new needles or thread. If they like to read, get them a new book they might enjoy.

Something Relaxing

9. Time Off

Caregiving is a rewarding but often taxing role. Time off can help your caregiver recharge and give them time to do something they enjoy. Just as you’re navigating your mesothelioma diagnosis, your caregiver is as well. Make alternate plans for a night or weekend and give your caregiver some time to themselves. Encourage them to relax and recharge.

10. A Massage

Because they are always taking care of others, give your caregiver the gift of being taken care of. A massage is a great way to help your caregiver relieve stress and feel pampered — plus, a massage can help relieve any muscle aches they have and contribute to their overall well-being.

11. An At-Home Spa Kit

Though a spa day is a nice and relaxing gift, it isn’t always feasible for some to travel to an actual spa location. Let your caregiver pamper themselves on their own terms by giving them everything they need to do so. Get a basket and fill it with spa-day items like face masks, a robe and other bath products.

12. A Clean House

Keeping your house clean can be hard — especially when you’re busy — but there are health benefits involved in doing so. Help your caregiver keep their physical and mental health in tiptop shape by hiring a cleaning service to give their house a deep clean.

Something Luxurious

13. Inspirational Wall Art

Wall art is a great addition to any room. It brightens up the space and makes it more interesting, happy and encouraging. Let your caregiver know that the work they do is important and valued by giving them inspirational, happy wall art like the downloadable one below.

Art print with inspirational message

14. Jewelry

Everyone deserves something beautiful. Show your gratitude to your caregiver by giving them a piece of jewelry that communicates your admiration for them and gratefulness for their help. You can even consider getting them a heart-shaped piece to celebrate health and the bond between you.

15. Comfortable Clothes and Slippers

Caregiving is hard work. After a long day, your caregiver likely wants to rest. Help them get comfortable by giving them pajamas and slippers that will make them feel relaxed and get a good night’s sleep.

16. A Gift Card

Sometimes, the best gift is the ability to choose something you actually want or need. A gift card is a great way to show your appreciation to your caregiver while still giving them the freedom to select exactly what they want to purchase. You can give them a gift card to a store they love, or a generic gift card that can be used anywhere credit cards are accepted. Present the gift card in a cute themed holder, like the printable one below.

Downloadable gift card holder for caregiver

Where to Shop for Your Caregiver

There are many places to get sentimental, delicious or fun gifts for your caretaker without leaving the house. We’ve rounded up a few popular online shopping options.

  1. Amazon: Amazon is a one-stop shop for gifts since the site sells almost everything you can think of — plus, delivery is usually fast and efficient. For most of your gift needs, Amazon has you covered.

  2. Personalization Mall: If you’re looking to make your gift a little more personal, Personalization Mall offers a large selection of customizable goods, including mugs, stationary, jewelry and more.

  3. Walmart: Both online and in-store, Walmart offers good deals on a large variety of products. You can order these products online and have them shipped to you, or get curbside pickup.

  4. Target: Known for its trendy and fun inventory, Target is a way to get fashionable items without breaking the bank. You can order online, have your goods delivered or opt for curbside pickup.

Navigating a cancer diagnosis like mesothelioma isn’t easy — on you or your caregiver. At the end of the day, you want to make your caregiver feel as valued and supported as they make you feel.

There are many ways to say thank you to your caregiver and let them know how much you care about them, whether for the holidays or just as a random “thank you.” No matter what you choose, your caregiver is sure to appreciate it.

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Last Modified December 4, 2020

Registered Nurse and Patient Advocate

Karen Selby joined Asbestos.com in 2009. She is a registered nurse with a background in oncology and thoracic surgery and was the regional director of a tissue bank before becoming a Patient Advocate at The Mesothelioma Center. Karen has assisted surgeons with thoracic surgeries such as lung resections, lung transplants, pneumonectomies, pleurectomies and wedge resections. She is also a member of the Academy of Oncology Nurse & Patient Navigators.

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