Diagnosed last month - starting chemo tomorrow and scared

I’m 37, married with two beautiful children aged 6 and 9 and my world fell apart at the end of June when I was diagnosed. I didn’t feel a lump when I went to the doctors , but I had breast pain and itching. Got referred for mammogram, and during ultrasound they didn’t like what they saw and did a core biopsy there and then. Results came back same day and the consultant told me it was cancer. I felt like I couldn’t go on, had to go home to my children and pretend all was ok.
Since then I’ve had 2 lumpectomies as first time the margins not clear . Lymph nodes not affected and its grade 1, stage 2. I am having chemo which starts tomorrow, 6 x FEC then radiotherapy for 4 weeks which should take me up to Christmas. The hardest part was telling my children, feel like I have given them this awful thing that they shouldn’t have to worry about at their age.
My husband has been very supportive and is positive. But sometimes when I look on here and read all the stories about cancer coming back and secondaries it petrifies me. Had loads of family and friends support, but would like to chat with others in the same horrible situation as me :frowning:

Hi Shelley37

Welcome to the BCC discussion forums, this is the right place to offer you some much needed support as the users of this site have a wealth of knowledge and experience between them.

To help you a long I have put for you below links to some of BCC’s publications you might find helpful and also the link to a book which is specially designed for children ‘Mummy’s Lump’, which you can send for free of charge (as are all BCC’s publications and services). If you need someone to talk to away from family and friends, then don’t hesitate to call the helpline here, they’re here to support you through this, calls are free, 0808 800 6000 lines open Mon-Fri 9-5 and Sat 10-2.





I hope this helps. Take care,

Jo, Moderator

Hi there Shelley, come and join us on Amazing August. We all start our chemo in the next month, the first one started today. We are there to hold each others hands and help one another. We are all quite young and are finding some laughs along the way. Look for the thread “starting chemo in August” and come and have a chat xxx

Hi shelley , gilly beat me to it I was going to say the same, it’s much better than being on your own and everyone’s lovely, and it’s not all doom and gloom we do laugh. X

Thanks ladies I will join that thread and hopefully the chemo won’t be too bad tomorrow x

Hi Shelly I an a june jewel and the best thing I can say to you the actual chemo is not as bad as your imagining, yes its as scary as hell but once tomorrow is over your 1 step in,the SEs can be a nightmare had a few myself but this last cycle after they adjusted my sickness meds been fine tired but not to bad.and on this site we are all in it together so you can come on here and rant and moan and also share your humour because beleive me you will find some mainly in what other people say to you,all the best to you for tomorrow and extra cuddles to your kids
Jill xx

Hi Shelley
I was in your shoes a year ago. I had my surgery in July and started chemo in August 2012. I completed my radiotherapy by mid January this year. I was 36 at the time, married, with a little boy aged 3 and a half. It is a very scary time and chemo is no fun but one year on I have had my first mammogram showing no signs of anything nasty, I love my new short and funky hair style (albeit alot greyer than it was before) and can remember clearly the words of my BCN who said "this time next year you will be sitting in your garden in the sun having a drink thinking, ‘god… remember this time last year’!!
She was right. My advise is grit your teeth and get on with it. When the treatment is finished you will find it hard to remember all of it and its horrid side effects. its a bit like childbirth, you cannot describe the pain to people. The dark thoughts pass and life does return to normal. Well as normal as it can be after a cancer diagnosis. I know its hard to see that day coming yet but it will come.
You won’t feel rough everyday with chemo so enjoy the good days. FEC is nauseating so ask for Emend antisickness tablets if you are suffering.
I almost didn’t complete all of my chemo as you do have a wobbly from time to time and won’t want any more but I am glad that I did do it. I said after every dose that I was not having another one!
Join the thread for August chemo as you will have amazing support.
Good Luck. You can and will do it.

Hi Shelley, I completed my last fEC today and have been doing the happy dance all day :slight_smile:
I joined the Awesome April Angels who stated chemo in April (surprisingly :)), and they have been a godsend. It’s worth reading through this thread as it has all the helpful hints required, many just learnt in the last few weeks , so it would be great for you all to benefit from these.
first hing, it’s not as bad as you imagine. Secondly write down your side effects and what time and day they are. I’m with Mandyj on the Emend, wonderful drug and you will fly through the nausea. Also Nossies if the Emend doesn’t quite hold it. When the unit phone you before number 2 you will then have all the info and they will adjust your meds to take all you side affects into account, so affectively it should get better as you go on from this point.Fresh pineapple for your mouth, and if possible create a den for yourself where you can lay and sleep/dose. Take your Dexamethazone (steroids ) as early in the day as possible, check with your nurse the earliest they advise, as these tend to be a bit like speed and keep you up all night, hence I am here writing to you now.In the early days just go with your body, do as much as you feel you can and rest when you need to.
telling your children is definately the hardest thing you will ever do, mine are 30 and 12. Both took it hard and in different ways, but they tend to reacexactions reactions. I know it’s an old saying about keeping positive, but it really does help the children. On our site when we felt down we tried to lothings two things that went good that day! You will find that you will make great friendships with all the August ladies, you will laugh and cry and moan together. It has certainly made our journey a far better trip.
good luck Philomena xx

Morning Shelley37, Lols and Gilly beat me to it with the invite to join us in Amazing Augusts and to wish you all the very best for today and will be sending you lots of positive thoughts and best wishes and look forward to seeing you go through your journey with us all. Take Care xx

Good luck Shelley I started mine yesterday - join the August group. Im 39 with 2 kids and yes like3 everyone here the diagnosis completely floored me. Look on the fact that it was grade 1 and no node involvement unlike (myself included) so that is good as you must have got it early enough

let us know how you got on
I was sick once lastnight but dont feel too bad now

Thanks ladies for all your great support , I was so sick this week that they kept me in hospital and I had to go back
i finally feel a little bit better today , but yes I said I’m not having any more chemo ! Your comments and stories have
made me realise that I will . The emend has been given to me ready to take so I’m praying that works next time
thank you all , Shelley xxx