10 Months down the line

I remember coming on this website almost every day for quite a few months when my Mum was diagnosed with breast cancer in August last year. For some reason I just haven’t had the chance (or maybe it was me wanting to avoid reading some things) to come on very often but a lot has happened since then.

Mum had 7 sessions of chemotherapy which was just immensely hard. I never thought we would have been able to get through it but we did. Mum really suffered with each chemo but the tumour did shrink and I thought everything was starting to work. Then she had a lumpectomy and a further clearance as well as having her lymph nodes removed.

But now they have found more pre-cancerous cells and she is going to have a mastectomy. But Mum doesn’t know what reconstruction she wants and she isn’t dealing with it all well. I just wonder when will it end and when can we be normal again? I also just read of someone whose Mum had a mastectomy and another lump was found in the other breast a month later. I don’t know how I would cope it that happened to Mum.

I’ve gone head first through the past few months and not looked back but I feel like I’m running out of steam. My Mum is everything to me, it’s just me and her and I’m going through the ‘why my Mum?’ stage again like I did at the beginning. I can’t sleep very well, I argue with my boyfriend and I feel like it’s a nightmare that’s real.

I just want things to be normal for both of us again.

Hi Michelle

What an amazing support you are to your mum. I dont know how old you are but you sound like you are keeping everything as sane as possible for her through this trauma. I was DX in May last year and I will never forget as long as I live the moment I had to tell my son and daughter who were then 18 and 17 [now 19 an 18].
My hubby works away all the time and my son started at uni in October last year so since then it has mainly been just me and my daughter and I couldn’t have done it without her, she has laughed with me and cried with me and I have talked to her about things that I really shouldn’t have but she always amazes me with her sunny outlook and optimism. I know she gets down about things but she has lots of friends who have been really supportive to her.
All you can do is take everything one day at a time, laugh when you want and cry when you want, just try for more laughing if you can it really is the best medicine. If your relationship with your boyfriend is well established maybe you could involve him in some things [as long as your Mum agrees] going with you to appts to support you, if your mum is having a treatment he can get the coffee’s and stuff, running errands, cutting the grass etc. If its a new relationship it may not be so easy for your Mum to let someone new in but the more he understands what is going on the more he can support you through it and the bickering may subside.
I didn’t have to have a mastectomy and I have nothing but admiration for ladies that do as this has to be immense. Can you ask your doctor or the BCN for some support and advice, there is loads out there you just have to ask a few questions. You have come this far and there is no shame in asking for a bit of extra support now.
Love and hugs to you both

So sorry to hear that your Mum is having to have a mastectomy, it’s clearly taking its toll on you both. It’s a hard slog to get through this especially when it’s only you there to help your Mum. You will get a new head of steam - I don’t know how we do it but we all do.

You sound a lovely daughter and a great support - I’m sure your Mum appreciates it very much.

Hi Irene and AJ,

Thanks to you both for your lovely messages. It is great to speak to people on here as a support. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t give up, ever, I’ll always be here for Mum, I just find it so hard at the moment.

My boyfriend and I have been together for 2 years and he has been great (we do so much with my Mum - I’m sure many men wouldn’t!) but when he says he doesn’t mind doing things, like coming to visit her with me when she’s in hospital or at home, he doesn’t really mean it. He’s just saying it. He would much rather be on the computer or doing something else. He has never once asked to help Mum out with the garden. I’m probably being too hard on him, it’s just that he isn’t as close to his Mum and he has three siblings to help him if anything is wrong with his Mum.

Anyway, this isn’t really like me to be moaning like this. I need to stop thinking so bleak and pick myself up to get on with it. Shame I can’t have the treatment for her really.

Thanks again and I hope you are your families are doing well.

Michelle. xx

Hi Michelle,

Please send your mum our fondest love.

I had my Mastectomy last June, due to high grade DCIS - pre cancerous cells -. I’m 54.

I haven’t bothered about a recon just yet, I guess at the time of my operation, I couldn’t be bothered, I just wanted to get rid of the ‘offending boob’ and think about recon maybe a couple of years down the line, I too was thinking about my one good boob.

Now, I sort of wish I’d gone ahead with immediate recon and not worried about my good boob.

I guess it’s only natural to worry …what about the other breast, what if…etc, but to go through life worrying …what if, well, it doesn’t do us any good, does it…

You seem so strong Michelle, but you must be feeling the strain.

My daughter is only 16…15 at the time of my dx and she tended to bury her head in the sand, she couldn’t look at me…bless her, but she’s fine now and coping very well.

I sincerely hope your mum is growing stronger day by day and don’t worry about …what if’s, leave them for someone else to worry about.

Take care

Hi Michelle

I am sorry to read that you are going through such a worrying time and I’m sure you will continue to receive valuable support from the other forum members. I just wanted to say that you may also find it helpful to talk things through with one of our helpliners, they can offer you support and a ‘listening ear’. The number is 0808 800 6000 and it’s open Mon-Fri 9am-5pm and Sat 9am-2pm.

Best wishes

Hi Michelle

Just a thought, as your boyfriend would rather be on the computer point him in this direction and we’ll sort him out!!!