13 Years Out - Popped in to say Hello to you all ...

Hi to all you lovely ladies and any gents who may be here as well.

I’m popping in as an old-timer, to say hello and let you all know there is hope.

Most of you probably do not know me, but I was quite a big user of the forums from 2007 onwards, when I was diagnosed with HER2+ breast cancer in June 2007.  I had an aggressive 5cm tumor on/in my breast and a huge lump in my armpit (it was the armpit lump which alerted me to something being wrong).   I was only in my 30s at the time.   I remember everything: the whole rollercoaster ride, being terrifed, “Terrified” was the name of a thread that me, along with a few other regulars belonged to and contributed to most days.  Everybody here was so supportive, and we supported each other through this journey and onwards.  I also contributed to other threads during my time of using the forums. 

I had chemo first, an operation, herceptin and radiotherapy.  I had many hospital stays with neutropenic sepsis, had to have my port taken out as it became infected, had to come off herceptin and restart it due to my low white blood count, and then had a spectactular reaction to Herceptin on my last infusion.  Not the way I wanted to finish, but all was okay.  I went through reconstructive surgery to the affected side, plus a preventative mastectomy and reconstruction to the other side, and a few revisions after that thrown in! 

I wanted to pop back to say hi to you all.   I know that you probably don’t hear from old-timers like me that often, and I know it helped me to hear from ‘old-timers’ and hear how well they’ve been doing.  So here I am, 13 years down the line, well and having moved on.  I never forget what happened to me.  I think about it every day.  It’s not something I can forget about, but I don’t live with the terror and dread of 'what’s going to happen next."  I just didn’t know if I would still be here.  But here I am, and I was so determined that I would be here.

My life changed in 2011, when I met the man of my dreams, got married and became a stepmum.  I am really really happily married to my soul mate.  I met somebody who took me on ‘warts and all’!

So there you go lovely ladies, and any gents that may be around too.  I had quite a poor prognosis, but my oncologist always told me he was considering the treatment he was giving me to be ‘curative treatment’. 

Thinking of you all going through what has been thrown your way.

Ruby xxx

Ruby1 Thank you for your beautiful post It is fabulous for you to pop on and share your story Congratulations on your marriage to soul mate and becoming stepmom :two_hearts: :two_hearts: :sparkles: :sparkles: Shi xx

Hi Ruby, so lovely to read your post and to see how far you’ve come from dx in 2007.  I always devoured posts from ‘old timers’, to be honest, they kept me going through the dark days so hoping your post helps others too, so uplifting.

I’m another old timer, haven’t been on here for years but drawn to the forum tonight after receiving some sad news - not cancer related - but it took me back to my early dark days of dx.  The forum helped me so much. For the record, dx in 2006 with ER- PR+ Her2+, micro mets, aged 39, pregnant, surgery at 30 weeks, baby induced at 37 weeks, chemo, rads, Herceptin and was given Tamoxifen, though ER- my Onc felt best to take it as highly PR+  This takes me to 14+ years, hoping for so many more though didn’t think I’d reach this point back then.

Ruby, keep on keeping on and beyond, your post made me smile, inside and outside.  To all members, new and old, whatever stage you are at, I wish you all the very best along the rocky road.  Much Love to All.

Wow, thank you so much for sharing your experience and stopping by again with such a positive story! It is so helpful to hear from people who have made it through and can offer hope to those of us in the thick of things.

Understandably, many folks who have had a positive experience move forward and don’t want to dwell in a forum all the time. So, it’s really supportive of you to remind all of us that we can pull through this and celebrate many milestones, like you have done, in the years ahead.

Thank you!

Hi Ruby1, thank you so much for your post- it has helped me so much. I am 3 years out of diagnosis and as it comes close to my ‘cancerversary’ i get gripped by ‘the fear’ - your post has helped. I am so glad to hear you are happy and really nice you have found your soul mate, looking forward to the update in another 13years xxx

Ruby1 - Forgive me, I got carried away in saying hi again to Evie, that I neglected to say what a great post and thread from you. Thank You for it

Had I known of this wonderful forum back then, I don’t doubt I’d have joined you on the “Terrified” thread, each of my own boob cancers having been 2006 and 2007 at 47yrs. 

Wow Girl, did you go through it!!! 30 is no age. It is testament not only to our excellent NHS care, but to your own personal STRENGTH and TENACITY. A wonderful positive example to give HOPE to all others beginning or who are part way through treatments.

And . . . a happily ever after ending too. You found your “soulmate”.  How blummin marvellous. I’m sooo pleased for you.

Jhaslett - Hi darlin. Yeh, anniversaries!! Throw it all up for you again. I so get that - and only natural and normal to. It wasn’t until my 5th year anniversary check, and all clear, that I just stopped worrying any more. Hopefully for you too. Barely think about it any more. But, and I recently posted this elsewhere on another thread, ALWAYS be vigilant if and when anything crops up body wise, that you feel is out of the ordinary. Whether that’s tummy probs, or aches and pains. Don’t sit getting worried and fearing the worst (Paranoid). Get it checked out immediately, hence me say stay “vigilant”, but NOT paranoid.   I would never have expected to have another small tumour in the OTHER breast only a year later. Another different PRIMARY too, so not due to SPREAD from the previous year’s tmour in the other boob.   But as soon as I pointed it out at my yearly check, it was dealt with immediately, preventing it becoming worse. Though unfortunately meant another mastectomy and again full ANC. 

I recently had to have an gastroscopy for tummy probs - thought it could possibly be secondary BC. But alerted the medics to my previous BC, so it was checked out immediately, so not much time spent worrying. Turned out to be just a hiatus hernia. Phew!!

Lots of love to everyone,  Dellywelly  xxxxxxx 

hi Ruby

Im er positive her2 strong diagnosed in december 20 im terrified so nice to here your story

Hi Ruby 1 

I’ve only just come across your post and would like to thank you for sharing how you’re doing now. I’m just coming up to 2 years post diagnosis and have my annual mammogram next week. To say post treatment I haven’t coped is an understatement. I only had a mastectomy but my recon didn’t go to plan and I’m on the waiting list for a tug flap. What I found interesting is that you said you still think about it everyday. I’m exactly the same and have tried hard to put it out of my mind but it’s impossible. I wondered how long it was that you felt more at peace with what you had been through? 

Thank you again for posting x 

Hi, nice to hear from someone 13 years down the line and I thought I’d pop on to say I’m 9 years since diagnosis and feeling well.   In 2012 I had a mastectomy left side, with back flap reconstruction.  No lymph nodes affected. ER +, herceptin neg.   I also had the Oncotype DX test and a decision was taken not to offer chemo or rads.     I took Tamoxifen for 4 years followed by Letrozole for 5 years.   As of this week, I have been advised my Oncologist to come off Letrozole and apart from a calcium / vitamin D supplement that’s it!!  I’m feeling positive and wanted to send positive vibes your way.  The worry everyone has, particularly on anniversary dates and just before appointments doesn’t go away but gets easier in time. 

Thanks @Ruby1   and others who have responded to this thread,

I am just coming up to my first anniversary this winter of my HER2+ ER+ Grade 3 Stage 2 diagnosis.

Very best wishes to you all

Hi Ruby, thanks for popping in and sharing your personal and most uplifting story which had a happy ending too, when you found your ‘Handsome Prince!’ It certainly made my day, and I shall face my Treatment tomorrow with a more positive outlook!