How Free Counseling Services Helped Central Kentucky Cancer Survivor

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) – When someone hears the words ‘you have cancer’, the first thought is often ‘how are we going to treat it?’ The plan of attack is aimed at ridding the body of cancer, but there is often another equally important treatment, which is focused on the mental well-being of the patient.

Everyone finds peace in their own way, and when Nicholasville’s Rose Thiedich and her horse Prince are together, nothing else really seems to matter.

You would never know she was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma 10 years ago.

“About every three years he seems to want to come back so I’ve had different treatments,” Thiedich said.

Through it all, Thiedich has always had his horses. It’s a bit of therapy for her.

“The horses were what kept me from having my initial chemotherapy, I had to get up every day and take care of the horses, and that kept me going,” Thiedich said.

Although she doesn’t dwell on it, the thought of her cancer returning sometimes comes to mind.

Last year, the pandemic associated with cancer and the loss of several people close to her made her realize that her horses were not enough therapy.

“I realized just by making the date and realizing that I felt different, I felt like I was having a hard time dealing with the grief and the loss and I just reached out,” said said Thiedich.

Thiedich called an oncology social worker from the University of Kentucky‘s Markey Cancer Center.

The free service is offered to patients to help them overcome their emotions during and after cancer.

According to Joan Scales, a clinical social worker, this can make a huge difference.

“It will help improve the way we can adapt and cope with our current circumstances and situations as we move forward with treatment. We want to make sure we take care of everything, ”said Joan Scales, director of the psych-oncology program.

Scales says there should be no shame in asking for help.

“Patients who are worried about recurrence or survival or ‘how am I going to go through my treatment and I don’t feel like I have someone to talk to about what I can do?’ said Scales.

For Thiedich, the call was a lifeline to feel again. A link to hope in your own cancer journey.

“Just by taking that step to reach, I felt better, I felt lighter,” Thiedich said.

One of the reasons Thiedich says she contacted was the counseling was free, and she says it’s huge due to the financial strain cancer can sometimes take on your life.

For more information, click here.

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