Birthdays should be happy!

Hi. It is my granddaughters first birthday today. But what should be a really happy day is being overtaken by my thoughts of all that has happened since her birth. This time last year I felt fit and active, I had a career I enjoyed and I was thrilled to be a grandmother for the first time. I really was so happy. Then just two months later my world is rocked by the recall from routine mammogram. Since then I have been through two lots if surgery to remove the tumours, chemo and radiotherapy. I have taken early retirement and am struggling with the side effects of arimidex. I know many of you out there are going through similar emotions and I do try to stay positive most of the time but events like today bring home the truth of what we have lost along the way. What am I doing today - I am going for a bone scan!

Hi Petal, so sorry you are feeling so down. I do understand about the grandchildren and birthdays and special days. I have 11 grandchildren and I know I probably won’t live long enough to see them all grow up. I just try to make the most of every day and I hope that you will feel better soon. Don’t let this bloody disease take anything else away from you, it’s taken enough already. My career went down the pan as well. I have liver and spine secondaries, but I’m doing ok at the moment (I think!!).

Good luck with the bone scan, let me know how you get on. Thinking of you and sending loads of love and hugs. Dianne x x x x

Hi Petal, sorry it’s such a hard day for you. I felt like that on my birthday, & family birthdays, too. The longing for the “old life” and that “cloud” sitting there a lot of the time are so hard to cope with. Hope the bone scan is ok. Sending you a big hug! X

Sorry you are feeling down, Petal. I don’t want to sound negative but can I just say how wonderful you have grandchildren. I had two daughters, both of whom are infertile and so no grandchildren in our family.


Hi Petal
I feel just like you a lot of the time! I was looking after the grandchildren yesterday (nearly 2 & 4) and felt so desperate that I need to be around for them… I’ve also just met up with a distant cousin from NZ who I last saw at the same time a year ago just before I had the fateful mammogram. Comparing the photo of me last year with her, with this year’s makes me feel so melancholy… So I’m with you on this one. Maybe this is part of facing it all.
Love & hugs

I just want to see my young children grow up, grandkids would be an enormous bonus!

Hi Lolly, I feel lucky, grateful, although I have no ‘happy ever afters’ that my daughter is grown up.
I do hope you get that enormous bonus. Take Care. With Love…xxx

Can I just say that at whatever age this disease strikes it is cruel. Which of us didn’t think that we would live to a ripe old age? I’m in my fifties but don’t feel ready to throw the towel in yet I’ve still got lots to do and see!

Yes Petal i understand that but from my point of view i just wish i had been dx at 50 instead of 34, then my boys would have been 20 and 17 instead of 4 and 1. I pray so much that i can just make it to 50…

Hi Lolly,
I know exactly how you feel, getting bc is bad at any age but when you are in your 30’s (I’m 36), life seems really cruel, you suddenly feel like, what have I done with my life, not a lot but nag the kids, this disease really makes you take a good look at your life and what’s important.
Take care x

Life is precious to all of us. Being affected by a possibly life limiting disease is cruel at any age. Children, teenagers, adults of all ages. All of us have a lot to live for, every family deserves a mum gran etc.
I certainly wouldnt dream of telling my mum should she ever be affected by bc that she had less of a claim to be upset at her age than I feel being 22 years younger than her and having young children.
These forums are meant to offer support, we all have our points of view and are entitled to express them hopefully in a sensitive manner.

sorry to hear your not feeling upbeat ,myself ive just had my 60th birthday one which i never thought id reach ,ive had breast cancer with mets since 2006 and yes its been really hard to see the grandkids come along and know that maybe i wont get to see them full grown ,but i have a lot of very happy memories that i try to make every day ,i think that whatever age your diognosed its not easy especially if your a younger patient ,just try to take one day at a time like i am at the moment with my future very uncertain .i wish you well with many more birthdays to celebrate xx

Sorry Tina but i disagree.

If my mum were to get bc, shes in her 60’s, i would still think the same, that i wish i was her age when i got it. Once you reach a certain age you are going to get certain illnesses, its to be expected, but at 34 with no family history it isnt expected.

I know a lady who is 74 and has just been dx with skin cancer. I have no sympathy im afraid, she should be grateful to have got to 74!!

Perhaps it just me? Am i being too hard?

Petal I agree with you, whatever age we get BC is horrible.
I know that getting it younger seems unfair and I think about what will happen to my children (4,9 and 12)if I died. I work out their ages if BC came back in 5, 10, 15 years etc. Would they be old enough to remember me (my Dad died when I was 4 and I have no first hand memories of him) cope without me etc.
But we all are mourning what we previously took for granted pre BC, that we would all live to a ripe old age and become grandparents, see our grandchildren grow up, retire when we wanted too etc.
This first year after BC is hard we have to cope with all the physical changes and mental anguish. I know I haven’t come to terms with all the changes yet and need to learn to live with what has happened to me. Part of this process for me is mourning our previous life.
Petal a big hug from me, thinking of you.

A cancer diagnosis at any age is truly awful but Lolly you are not alone in your thinking. I was diagnosed in my early 40’s, I had secondaries straight from the very beginning. I feel grateful I’ve had 8 good years with bone mets as during this time I have lost many friends, we all used to meet up, who had very young children. I only have to read some posts from the forums I frequent the most, the secondaries forum to know there are others in their 30’s and early 40’s who are desperately trying to hang on for their young families. Life is so precious, I’ve never ever taken it for granted I would make 3 score and ten and now I most definitely won’t. But those with very young children have been, are going through so much more than me, coping with the awful uncertainty of this disease.
My best wishes to you all here, young and not so young. xxx

Hopefully, my support for anyone who comes to this site looking for help will remain non judgemental and independent of age, race, gender or background. There is no validation of anyone’s need for support based on my personal beliefs.
Telling my little boys about the bc has been the most distressing thing I have ever done, yes, life doesn’t seem very fair.

Oh Lolly take a moment out to digest what you have written - we all have deep empathy for those with young children and have been hit by this disgusting disease. It doesn’t take too much imagination to appreciate what stress and strain they are going through BUT you have no idea what responsibilities anyone over fifty might have. A disabled offspring depended on her for their welfare or aged parents who cannot manage without her input or how about the one where her husband has cancer and needs her every bit as much as a child. Every one of these scenarios can be found on this website. It is very short sighted if you think that responsibility and worth ends as your children grow up and it’s o.k because you’ve had a good span. Please, please be careful how you phrase your thoughts - theres no room for point scoring on this site.

Thank you to Belinda and Crazy Cat Lady for understanding my feelings…as for everyone else…well i thought this was the one place i could say what i feel, sorry if ive upset anyone…

I think a diagnosis of a potentially life threatening illness is extremely distressing for anyone of any age.
I was 38 when diagnosed, boy was i angry, as i had always associated BC, being an ‘older ladies’ disease. Just shows how wrong i was!

Now, six months since treatment , i can look forward. Telling my five year old daugher, on her first day in reception class, that her mummy had a nasty lump and would be in and out of hospital, lose her hair and generally feel rubbish, was really hard going.

But i would not wish it on anyone older either…it is such a horrid disease, and has the potential to take so much from us if we allow it too. So many people are living/working longer now…a diagosis is just awful what ever stage of life you are at.

Take care all…

Of course Lolly you can say anything but just with a little more sensitivity - us oldies have feelings too and still go through emotional turmoil - we at the end of the day don’t want this any more than you do. Some of us have children and the awful feelings we experience of possibly handing this bl…dy awful thing on to them is constantly with us - so you see we suffer too just in a different way.