I have just lifted my arms and tied my hair up, without pain. I’m more than a little amazed and have to document this somewhere.
On Thursday, almost exactly 8 months after I first started taking Letrozole, I saw the oncologist and he has agreed to my having a 2 month break. I have been complaining for 8 months about aches and pains, until even I couldn’t believe I wasn’t imagining it. This time last week I couldn’t stand up and walk without first leaning forward for the first several meters while my back straightened itself up. I couldn’t get out of my chair or my car without groaning. I couldn’t roll over in bed without struggling, and going to the toilet in the middle of the night was agony and involved several manouvres including holding on to the bedposts until I got to the door. (And then got back in to a bed that was damp from sweating.) I had forgotten all the little things, like being unable to tie my hair up.
The decision weighs heavily, though. I immediately came to this forum to read about everyone else’s experiences, trying to justify myself. I was shocked to see that for many people (that I read about) the difference in prognosis was less than 1%. I had checked my statistics on the new NHS Predict and thought that my 8% change was too small to justify the side effects. 75% 10 year survival rate with surgery alone vs 83% with Letrozole and bisphosphonates. And the minute I stopped the tablets I started worrying about whether I’ve done the wrong thing.
(While typing this I had to start the evening meal, which will be spaghetti bolognaise. I added the meat (800g) to the pot and stirred. I couldn’t have done that a couple of days ago!)
So - the first difference I noticed after stopping the tablets was actually that my breasts felt fuller and softer and scarcely fit my bra. This doesn’t do my head any good, I might add. And the pain in the breast changed from general pain throughout the breast, to a more localised pain near the surgical site.
At this minute I am elated. I know I am going to go through sleepless nights worrying about doing the right thing, but for the next seven weeks and 2 days I shall enjoy my old body. I would be interested to hear from anyone else who made this decision.