Post op suggestions

My dad will be having surgery shortly (a few weeks before Xmas) and I am curious to know if there is anything that you needed after surgery to help you along. I live far away, so I can't be there, and I REALLY want to make sure he is comfortable and feels supported. Did you feel like sleeping? Reading? Appetite changes? My dad is being very brave, but as a cancer survivor myself, I know there is probably some level of anxiety that he is not sharing. Suggestions are welcome!!