New user - hello and thank you!

Hi ladies!

I’m new to this forum – in fact, I’ve never posted on a forum before in my life and the only “club” I ever joined before this one was a tennis club for a few years when I was 18 – so this is a big moment for me!

I’ve read many posts since my dx of bc in June 2007 and I’ve found this site to be a wonderful resource. You’ve all helped me through the truly horrible first weeks of diagnosis, my fears about having a mastectomy and all the worry and uncertainty caused by the thought of chemo and breast cancer in general. The information I have gleaned has been invaluable. The first 6 months have been really tough psychologically, but I’m beginning to feel in a much better place now and would like to say a “big thank you” for all your help. I feel I’ve taken so much, and now I’d like to join you all and give something back. This community is a vital resource and I’m sure there must be hundreds and hundreds of others like me who have gained so much through reading the posts on this site. Anyway, enough of this waffle… your heads will be swelling!! Below is a little bit about me so you can see where I’m currently at:

  • dx in June 2007 aged 40 (now 41) with grade 3 ductal carcinoma of left breast, two lumps. Small-breasted so told mastectomy only option. Post-op, consultant confirmed there “was a lot going on in there” (love the technical description – lol!). 72 mm of tumour, associated vascular invasion, ER pos (7/8), HER2NEU neg, snb (4 nodes removed) showed no lymph involvement. I’m on the TACT 2 trial (E-CMF) and have finished with the lovely epi (x4) and just completed my first cycle of CMF today (waiting for the chemo blues to kick in…) - just 3 more to go. 3 weeks of rads to follow, then tamoxifen for 5 years and/or ovarian ablation.

Looking forward to finally meeting you all and wishing you all the best with your journeys…

Love KentishLass xxx

PS sorry for long post – been storing this up for ages!

Hello KentishLass

Sorry you had to join us and I wish you all the best in your treatment. I was very lucky not to need chemo but am one year down the line with Tamoxifen and, if you have any queries, this is definately the place to be

Lots of love

Debbie

Hello and welcome Kentishlass

I agree this site helps us draw on the experiences of others. I only found the site after a second recurrence. I am amazed at the variation of treatments and the wealth of knowledge out there. I enjoy using this site rather than keep talking to family and friends as I worry about being a cancer bore.

Take care

Carol

Hi Kentish Lass

Just wanted to say hello and welcome. As you say this is an invaluable site - which I jointed a couple of weeks after dx in July. I too am grade 3 invasive ductal and have just finished 6 lots of chemo this week. I see surgeon on 23rd then surgery on 10th Dec followed by rads - no other treatment for me after that as I am triple neg. Feeling quite upbeat at the mo altho know by the weekend will feel bad from chemo - but at least for the last time!!

Take care and stay in touch
Fiona
x

Hi KentishLass,

Hello from me too and good luck with the rest of your treatment. I assume you live in Kent or were born in Kent?

Margaret x

Hi Debbie, Carol, Fiona, Margaret - thanks for the warm welcome.

Debbie - I’ll definitely want to pick some brains on tamoxifen nearer the time - thanks so much for the offer. At the moment I’m reading tam threads with interest and just hoping I’ll get an easy ride on it. Already getting a few hot flushes each day on chemo (like most, I guess)… but as my flat is pretty draughty, I don’t really mind as they warm me up quite nicely! How weird is that, lol! Hope you’re not having too bad a time on the tam?

Carol - its funny but I never, ever thought I’d actually join this forum or any support group. Not knowing any one else with cancer, I was a bit scared about meeting others in the same boat, guess I was in denial for quite a while and not wanting to admit it had happened to me. But it’s great to share knowledge and experiences and it’s not doom and gloom all the time - there are some really fun threads going. Keeping a sense of humour through all this makes things so much easier.

Fiona - do you mind me asking what surgery you’re having? It must be good that you’ll be recovering before Xmas - that’s presuming you’re looking forward to Xmas - sorry if I’ve put my big foot in it! I’m expecting to be feeling rubbish Sat/Sun too. I call it “a touch of the amoebas” - though not entirely sure whether an amoeba feels anything at all - but it involves generally lying around in a gloomy, listless way, which seems pretty amoeba-like to me! Hope your amoebas don’t get you too badly this time.

Margaret - been living in sunny Folkestone for last 3 years. Originally from Banbury in Oxfordshire (just about the most land-locked place in Britain) - so it’s fantastic to finally live by the sea. Really think the sea-walks help me keep optimistic. Do you live in Kent too?

Love and best wishes to you all. Onward and upwards, eh?

Nicola (KentishLass)

Hi Nicola,

I’m in Surrey but a frequent visitor to Kent, particularly Whitstable (friends there) and Canterbury (went to uni there). Seawalks sound a great idea and you have plenty near you.

Margaret

Margaret, I know Whistable and Canterbury well. My OH works at the uni - the staff certainly seem to make full use of the all the onsite bars and restaurants! What I’ve seen of Surrey is lovely too - but don’t know the county well at all.
Bye for now, Nicola

Hi Nicola and welcome from me too.
I know what you mean about joining the ‘club’. When I was diagnosed (March) and started to hear about various means of support I really felt ‘this is a club that I really don’t want to join’. Just didn’t want anything to do with bc. but of course you just have to get stuck in, there’s no choice. Still can’t bring myself to wear a pink ribbon or anything tho’ - call me strange if you want!
Hope the rest of the chemo goes OK and without hassle. I’m finishing mine on Monday (had FEC then Taxol, but it all took 6 months cos of low blood count complications). Next is Herceptin and Tamoxifen for 5 years.
All the best
jacquie x

Hi Nicola and welcome

You are so right. I was never a “joiner” either but the people on this site are just amazing. I have had such support, and learned so much, and felt really comfortable. I was diagnosed in April, mastectomy and axilliary node clearance in May, now finished chemo and had first radiotherapy planning appointment today. Without the wonderful people on here I would be a gibbering wreck. Instead I feel supported when I need to be, useful when I can be, and well informed, and I can laugh!

Loads of love

Dilys
xxxx

Hi Nicola

I’m not sure about the kind of surgery yet - I had the chemo first with the hope of just needing a wide local excision. I meet with my surgeon a week tomorrow and he will decide whats best. I had scans 1/2 way thro chemo and will have more hopefully before seeing surgeon. Apparently my surgeon is the best for sparing the breast if he can but he takes no chances with my health in the future so its all a bit uncertain!!

Take care for now
Fiona

Hi Nicola and welcome from me too…

I too browsed the various threads on the forum for quite a long time until eventually taking the plunge and adding my thoughts! I gained a lot from others advice and experiences, but was quite careful about what I read on the internet, as I wanted to keep myself in a positive bubble! One thought… if you get a chance to go on one of the “Young Womens Forum” run by Breast Cancer Care I’d go for it. I deliberated long and hard about whether or not I’d want to be in a bit group of others who’ve had bc, but was so glad that I went. It’s aimed at 20-45 year olds and I was wary, as I’m nearer the top end of that group, but so were many of the others… it was good to see that about 3/4 of those there were finished most of their treatment (other maybe than being on Tamoxifen, etc)…so it was nice to see first-hand some women who had come through it all…

I’m on the countdown now and seeing the light at the end of the tunnel… I finish chemo next week (YAHOO!!!)… had surgery first, but then have 6 weeks of radiotherapy, still to come… the time does go quite quickly, but then hindsight is a great thing, eh? Didn’t seem to be going quickly during the summer!

All the best for your treatment and read on…Roll on 2008!!

AliS x

Hi Fiona
Hope all goes well when you meet your surgeon next week. It’s great that there’s the possibility of saving your breast - fingers and toes crossed. Let us know how it goes.
Nicola xxx

Hi Jacquie, Dilys and AliSe

Thanks for yet more warm welcomes. Although we’d all rather not be here, it’s still an amazing “club”. Wonderful that you’ve all finished, or are about to finish chemo. I’m chomping at the bit to get to the end too!
Nicola xxx

Hi Nicola

Only just caught up with your thread, and wanted to say “welcome” to you too ! I too never thought I would join something like this, but have found it to be a lifeline - I don’t know what I’d do without these wonderful ladies on here.

I’m 42 and was diagnosed on 4th April. Had eight sessions of chemo which finished on 31st August, had mastectomy and node removal on 3rd October, and am now waiting for my rads to start on 26th November. That finishes 14th December, then I’ll have herceptin for a year, and in February my breast reconstruction (where I get to go up a size - in both breasts !!! (every cloud and all that!). The past few months have been hard, a few ups and downs here and there, but as time has gone on, many more “ups” than “downs” - lol ! Luckily I’ve managed to maintain a sense of humour, and having a hubby and 2 kids who are also a bit nutty has helped too.

Anyway, welcome again - you’ll be finished chemo before you know it !

Lots of love

Julie xx