making first contact

Hi All First time on here. Not sure where to start but guess am looking for a bit of moral support. I live alone and dont have any close family. Its hard to find people to talk to and everyone wants to tell you to keep your chin up when all you want to do is have a blub and get a cuddle.
Ive had mastectomy and reconstruction in July and went back to work last week.
Anyone in a similar boat or just fancy a chat sometime???
Sue x

hi there. it takes a lot of courage to keep going on your own. trying not to sound patronising. had mx and recon in july and had wound infection so not back at wotk yet. also waiting to have expander gradually filled.people keep saying how well I look but dont seem to realise what a big op it was and the emotional impact of losing abreast.have you decided on any furtherrecon. my mum sent me an article from a newspaper about a lady who had a bit of her ear lobe used to make new nipple.as I still not sure if i want any more recon at this stage and want to get the implant sorted first.I have 2 kids and OH and family a few hundred miles away.i find just reading other postings helpful and sometimes add a comment. makes you feel that you are not the only one in that situation.hope you find the forums helpful
Doreen

Hello Sue,

I’m on my own too, husband died 10 years ago, and no children. I do have a lovely sister in law who helped me when I had my WLE last November. She brought me home from hospital and stayed, or they would have kept me longer! I didn’t have any recon then as I was having radiotherapy, but I’m thinking of having some lipofill on the surgery side and a reduction on the other. I’m a bit scared though, and wonder if its worth it, so I’d welcome a chat.

Jojoxxx

Hi Sue

I had a mastectomy last November followed by chemo and radiotherapy. I am lined up for a breast reducton on my other breast on 4th December, and I am hoping for reconstruction next year.

You have done extremely well coping on your own. It’s difficult keeping your chin up, if I’m down I’m down and it takes alot to get me back up again!! You must have been devasted living on your own and coping with that terrible diagnosis. I don’t have family of my own apart from my Mum who I live with. She will be 80 this year, and although she has tried to support me, she is used to me supporting her so the past year as been very difficult and there are some things I just cannot burden her with or talk to her about.

I finally got back to work at the beginning of June and everyone kept telling me how well I looked and how well I was doing, while inside there were times I felt like I was falling apart.

We are, perhaps, not in exactly the same boat but we are both victims of this awful disease - I am quite happy to chat merrily away!

Love

Lyndaq xx

Hi Jojo

All I have written above goes for you too!

If you want to chat I am quite happy to!

Love

Lynda xx

Hi Sue,

I had mx and recon in May and went back to work after 8 weeks (no chemo or rads needed|). I have found it difficult dealing with all the emotional stuff - my OH can’t really handle it and is now on anti depressants - I don’t feel I have the strength for my recovery and to help him!. Are there any local support groups in your area? I’ve joined a couple of groups - one we just meet monthly for a drink and a chat and not just about bc - the other is an post surgery exercise group. I always feel better after the meetings.

Best Wishes
Misha

Hi Sue

There are a couple of Breast Cancer Care’s support services that might be of interest to you as they can offer help and support via the telephone in addition to the support you have here.

The first is Breast Cancer Care’s telephone support group. It’s a chance to get together once a week to talk with people who’ve been there. Linked together by phone in comfortable surroundings, you can express your feelings and discuss the practical and emotional impact of living with breast cancer. The groups will be particularly useful for you if you feel isolated. The groups are completely free (we pay for the phone calls) and as long as you have access to a phone and have a quiet private place from which to call, you can join us from anywhere in the UK.

There is also Breast Cancer Care’s peer support service. The telephone service aims to quickly put you in touch with one of our trained peer supporters, who has had a personal experience of breast cancer. Our peer supporters are from diverse backgrounds and ages and have experienced different types of breast cancer and treatments. They are ready to listen, offer skilled emotional support and share their experiences and understanding.

For more information about these and our other support services available to you, please telephone our helpline on 0808 800 6000 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm and Sat 9am-2pm) or email:

I hope this helps

Best wishes
Lucy

Hi Sue
I answered a post called anyone having treatment at Cov and we have met up and it has proved a great help - just being with people who understand is good. We laugh loads and it isn’t all about cancer… we are all different ages but it works.

How about posting your own thread like that.

Talking on here is good but face to face is better!

take care Jen x

Hi Sue,

Are you back at work full time? I hope thay have given you a phased return, that really helped me, I could only just cope even at reduced hours. Six moths down the line I’m just about feeling human again - most days anyway.

Jen, Did you make the arrangements via a PM? It sounds a good idea.

Lindaq - your surgery plan sounds very much like mine, so it would be great to compare notes.

Take care everyone

Jojoxxx

Hi Ladies
Thank you so much for your kind comments and support. I think going back to work has helped me loads to take my mind off other things. The team I work with have been fab with me even though I am their boss !!!

I have a daughter but very soon after my surgery she made it clear that she couldnt be bothered as she had a new boyfriend on the scene. In fact she hasnt spoken to me for weeks and doesnt even know my test results!! Heartbreaking really as I dont feel I have done anything wrong and always supported her as she is a single mum. On a positive note it has given me little time to feel sorry for myself as I have had to get on and do everything on my own. I have a couple of lovely friends who have helped me a lot but of course people have their own families and lives.
I am booked in for some counselling soon and will see how that goes

What I do to get me through the day is put my smartest outfit on ,get the make up on and hair done and off I go. Compared to many I am very lucky. I dont need chemo at the present time or radiotherapy .I go to see the oncologist next week ,just for a chat and he will put me on hormone tabs.Dont know what kind yet or what side effects to expect.

In the meantime I am throwing myself into work and hoping for the best

Keep going ladies !! You are all fab

Big hugs all round
Sue xx

Hi Sue

You are one remarkable lady to pass such mild comments about your daughter. I wouldn’t wish anything on anyone but I hope one day she realises what you have been through and how you have been trying to come to terms with breast cancer.

On the up side your work colleagues sound fantastic. I, too, was very lucky and they all supported me and kept me going. I was unable to go to the Christmas Dinner last year because I was having chemo, so they cancelled and waited until I’d finished my treatment and was well again. We finally have our Christmas Dinner last month!!! They are truely lovely people and sound just like yours.

Again, I too, have a couple of friends who have helped me whenever I needed it. One went with me when I was admitted to hospital, visited me every day and collected me and took me home when I came out of hospital. This is what friendship is all about.

I am pleased you keep busy at work, it really helps. My boss was excellent and let me do as much as I wanted to.

I hope you get on OK at counselling. If getting dressed up and having your hair done works for you - good on you!! My hair started to grow a few months ago and it will soon be at the stage when I can do something with it. I put some gel on it the other week and I couldn’t tell the difference! I have a wig that I wore when my hair came out, I named her Valerie. She is now residing back in her box! I call my prosthesis Charlie. He’s OK in the summer but in the winter he’s so cold!!!

Let me know how you are I usually have a look at this web site every day.

Love

Lynda xx

Hi Jo Jo

What’s the state of play with you?? When were you diagnosed and what sort of surgery did you have? Must warn you I’m not very good with the abbreviations that are used on this web site. I’m often left scratching my head!!

I’m back at work full time but I do get bad days - like yesterday. All I wanted to do was sleep. I’m not sleeping too well at the moment. Keep waking up and can’t get back off. I am assuming it’s the Arimidex. I’m OK if I take it fairly steady. We moved offices about a month ago and it really exhausted me. I was like a limp rag!!

As I said I’m having a breast reduction on 4th December. I can’t wait. I see it as the next step to getting reconstruction. I try to keep chirpy but have to admit I’m taking Venlafaxine (happy pills!!).

Look forward to hearing from you.

Love

Lynda xx

Hi Lynda,

I got my diagnosis after a routine mamogram last October. I had a wide local excision in November, sentinal node biopsy and one extras group of nodes removed all of which were clear, and radiotherapy in January this year. My surgeon says I’m very lucky as I had no invasion, would not have known but for the mamogram, and no nodes involved. I know what he meany, but lucky is not the word I’d choose to describe the experience!

Anyway because about a tennis ball size was removed I am very lopsided, and I have a big dent. Surgeon thinks he can fill this with fat from the sides and then reduce the other breast, or rather reduction first then balance the other one. I sort of want to go ahead, but at 61 I wonder if I’m being a bit foolish.

I see from your earlier post you had your op about the same time as me, but you have had much more extensive treatment. I think you’ve done really well to be back full time and not surprised you are tierd and wrung out. Its only this last few weeks I have started to feel intersted in things, although I went back to work at the begining of March, I really struggled, I was so tierd when I got home that I had lots of unhealthy take aways - and absolutely no cleaning!

Sue - How are things with you? Work’s helpful, but don’t over do it. Me time is good too!

Lots of hugs to everyone

Jojoxxx

Hi all

i omitted to say we met for coffee i think in earlier post and arranged by PM - then if you like each other you can later swop email/tel nos.

i have a sister who had same BC as me the year before so i never felt entirely alone but it has made my life much more fun being able to just sit with people who are like me… we all have humour and compare hair growth etc… late in Aug i actually had to explain to a doc that i had had BC and just finished rads and was asking for a sick note because i could barely wake up to come to the apptment - tho i felt a tad upset at the time - the good side was that i realised i no longer look like i have had chemo - the hair growing back etc… hmm still annie lennox! But - good in that i can move on without everyone knowing.

Work helped me to but i am doing equiv of 4 days - the aim is i will be full time by christmas. I had mastectomy, chemo and rads, now tamoxifen - i do get tired but i did before - but i need ot avoid falling over tired stuff.

best wishes to you all - nice thread

jennifer

Hi JoJo

No - I don’t think you are being foolish at all. Why shouldn’t you go ahead and have it done?? As soon as I heard the word reconstruction I knew it was for me, and I still feel the same. I view it as going forward. Just because you’re 61 don’t write yourself off! If you want it - have it! You deserve it!

I was very lucky with my boss and work colleagues. They kept in touch with me on a regular basis and I missed them so much. They supported me and kept me laughing. In some respects going back to work was like having a holiday. Some days we didn’t get much done, we were too busy laughing and drinking tea! My boss Matt was wonderful, he’s lovely, he kept taking me out for lunch! We had unhealthy pizza!!

Lots of love to everyone

Lynda xx

Hi Everyone
Im going to see my friend Yvette today for lunch. She was in the next bed to me and we have stayed in touch.She has had double mastectomy and recon so we compare notes but we talk about all kinds of other stuff too.
The situation with my daughter has gone from bad to worse in that she has told me she doesnt want to have anything further to do with me. Idont really know why !! Anyway it did bring me literally to my knees but Ive picked myself up now and am determined to put it behind me as much as poss. I have realisedd that no matter what I do I cant change that situation.

Anyone thinking of recon should just go for it !!! As you know I had mastectomy and recon at the same time. My breast feels a bit weird and the implant isnt quite positioned right but once everything settles down the surgeon will give it a tweak back into place .Anyway I look OK with my bra on and I would defy anyone to notice Id had anything done. How I look has always been important to me and at the moment even more important, its sort of a way of saying to everyone "Im OK " Its hard to explain in an email.

Heres a question for you all… Being a single lady (Im 57 by the way) Ive got into a bit of internet dating before my op and since. Its a bit difficult since the op as I dont know when I should say …"and by the way I have breast cancer and a wonky boob!! " ha ha ha !! I hope none of you are scandalised … but Ive been divorced 12 years spent 10 of those running round after my daughter and grandson …so I think Im due a chance to find someone for me if at all possible… no luck yet but Ive made a couple of nice friends.

Hope you are all keeping well and the sun is shining wherever you are
Big Hugs
Sue xx

Hi Sue… you carry on just the way you are I too cope by putting on my smartest outfit for work the hair and the make up …I too had immediate recon in jan and going for my nipple in Oct …my boobs dont match but hey they are better than they could be and dressed you cant tell .Inside I am a wreck but to those looking in think I am amazing !!! I assure you I aint …I too find the emotional side of losing the breast hard and hate the way I look I am still in a lot of discomfort and my OH has never seen me naked since this all cracked off and dont think now he ever will or even want to but hey ho !! Nothing scandalises me …you go for it .I popped int my local Asda the other morning and the checkout lady always calls me her classy lady !! This guy was staring at me …I went in the next day as usual and he was there again …she told me that he looks out for me every morning cos I am gorgeous …I laughed like a drian …swore a bit and thought to myself if only he knew…It made me chuckle all day wanted to tell my OH but he would have tgrown a wobbly so I have only you to shae it with …he wasnt that hot but it made me feel good jst for a while so you keep opn doing waht you doing .Wht part of the country are you ?
Mazxxxxxxxxxxx

hmmm - i haven’t looked back since i said to my partner - i’ll show you mine if you show me yours after my mx… it was fine. i didn’t do recon but prosthesis is fine except when it’s hot - i’ll explore re-con next appointment. not for the look but because I can… plus i will by then have time to look at stick on ones with BCN. I was never someone who wore low tops etc anyway and i don’t think the way it looks bothers him - lol just asked him and he said nope, doesn’t bother him.

I am sorry about your daughter, but some people run for cover and others don’t.

take care

j x

Hi Sue

You go for it. You deserve it. Why shouldn’t you? Can’t put into words the way I feel about your daughter, except that I am totally mystified. I don’t understand her. But you know what they say - what goes around comes around. My mother has another good one - long goes the pitcher to the well before it comes back broken! My grandmother used to say that as well. I am a great believer in you reap what you sow, and I hope your daughter sees the error of her ways.

I too am 57 and although I’ve never tried internet dating if you are happy and meet someone who makes you happy - good for you! I think when you meet someone you will know when the time is right to mention your illness. If the response is positive and what you want all well and good - if not - it’s his loss, throw him back!

I was dating someone about 12 years ago who told me he could never live with or love a woman with one breast, so it’s a good job I dumped him isn’t it!!! He has since got married again and I just hope the poor woman he married realises what she has got hold of!!!

Love to everyone!

Love

Lynda xx

I live in the MIdlands …Originally from Liverpool …moved here 27 years ago but still go back …meeting up with the Liverpool ladies on the 11th October
some from Manchester and the Wirral …maybe you would like to come ??? I can always check the numbers and ask the organiser if there is room for one more ??? We are all having lunch some of us have met before in July and some at the hosp and some are total newbies
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Maz