Hello lovely ladies. Your photos made me smile, feel I know you that little bit better - you all look amazing 😊
Having had alopecia for 25yrs I had no hair to lose. But I can sympathise re hair loss and braving the shave. So I hope you don’t mind but in spirit of things wanted to post a pic of me taken just before chemo with ‘my’ hair - (a wig). Sadly chemo hasn’t rebooted my immune system into producing even a wisp of hair again - but was a long shot! So this is me...post surgery, pre chemo saying hi.
Stuck at 14
You look amazing but too young to have to put up with this crap
You have a lot more hair than me. thought we were on the same route! Got the shampoo bar recommended by Shi in Lush today so gonna use it everyday to see will it speed up my hair. Photo of you with your children my favourite. Getting my margins result on Wednesday so counting down the hours. Patience was never my strongest point.
Hope everyone had a relaxing week end
So lovely to see all your photo ladies, you all look amazing. I don't feel I can post a photo as I still have lots of hair, I did the cold cap and just lost the hair on top and it is now growing back, about an inch long now. So I guess the discomfort of the cap each cycle was worth it.
I am now 11 rads down out of 20 and skin is holding up well, no problems yet. She said today it can be up to 2 weeks after treatment ends that the side effects kick in. I have been driving myself and no problems although on busy days the car parking can be a nightmare, I end up being really early for my appointments as I allow extra time for parking. I also opted for weekend appointments, mainly due to work but it also makes the parking so much easier, like a ghost town on the weekends.
And a song to add to Shi's juke box - as I was driving to my appointment this morning Starship's "Nothings gonna stop us now" was playing. It was a good song to rock out to before treatment. We have all been though so much. I am coming to the end of my treatment and can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Just booked a summer holiday in Cornwall today, couldn't face going abroad just yet and been putting off booking anything, almost like tempting fate. So now have that to look forward to.
Hope you all had good bank holiday x
I had a lot of seroma and could feel it building up even though my drains were working. Unfortunately because of this my drains had to stay in for 2 weeks 😟😟. I think it’s because a I’m a large lady.
Hey LB, Sisters, I think my eyebrows would look like distant relatives 10 times removed 🤣🤣. Thank u though, I will definitely bare this in mind 😘
Sunnydaze, thank you, it is really lovely to hear thoughts of people sharing their real experiences. It is so hard to know what to do for the best but I will definitely keep your thoughts in my mind over the coming few weeks.
Drummers widow, that's really interesting about the breast care nurses draining fluid. I will call mine in the morning. Thank you x
I think it was day 6 before my drain was low enough to let me go home Jayne.
The nurses used to sort my drains out. I wondered if you could get a district nurse to come to your house?
Hi G when pencilling your brows - someone advised me “eyebrows are sisters not identical twins” 😊 it makes the process less fraught I found 🤣
Good luck for your final chemo on Friday. We’ll be happy to ring that bell 🔔 for you.
I agree, I think the benefits of a delayed diep reconstruction are lessened because the scarring involved is more significant than if it was carried out immediately. Plus, you have to deal with the tummy surgery.
If you did decide to go down the route of a delayed diep. You definitely would get an ironing board stomach though, but it’s big surgery.
i do enjoy having a flat tummy these days, ( it’s always been flabby since child birth) although it did get distended during chemo, it has settled down again now.
Would I do it again, knowing what I know now? Not sure...An implant does seem an easier option, but I was really against silicone. Difficult decisions.
At the time the thought of losing a breast was massive, now it pales into insignificance when all I want to be is cancer free and that is the ultimate goal ( but it can never be guaranteed)
I had 2 drains when I had my mastectomy. I was draining loads cos of the seroma but I used to contact my breast cancer nurses. I would go to see them and they would drain more fluid for me so no GP or going to A&E thankfully. Is this something you could do perhaps? I’m also on blood thinners and had a bit bruising. Hope it stops draining soon xx
Oh ladies thank you for your lovely messages, I have my 8th and last 🙌🙌chemo on Friday and then I am done for a bit until I decide what recon I am having, find out my genetic test results, regardless of those a decision to be made on whether my other breast is coming off (but the ops won’t be until after the summer as I and my family need a break from all this crap) so just recovery from last chemo, tamoxifen and decisions to be made in June.
Cant believe your DIEP scars sunnydaze, that sounds bloody brilliant, well done u for going through all that. I have a massive anchor shape scar already...lumpectomy was all across the length of the bottom of my breast and then when I needed a mastectomy and nipple removing I was sliced straight up the middle for some reason,all healed well but definitely not something I can disguise. Interested in others scars now, assumed they would all be similar but I guess not! The recovery is massive isn’t it compared to implants...I think I am more edging to implants (if new surgeon can cobble together enough skin because of how my mastectomy was done) because of this (but tummy tuck does sound appealing especially if u heal well like u have but I am worried that I will just have a fat belly above my waist and a flat tummy below my waist - despite being relatively slim prior to this, I always takes about my sweet and savoury tummies!! 😱).
I am going to start the biotin imminently too, a friend has used them over the last few months as her hair was thinning and they have worked wonders too. I have got the Waterman’s shampoo and conditioner ready and waiting to go but I too may pop to lush for this! Also the other tipis a silk pillow case, I have had this for a while but if I hadn’t I think
i would have invested in one.
I am really lucky that I don’t have work to think about, adds a whole new dimension doesn’t it. obvious financial one for many and sending massive hugs here and hoping you are able to get some assistance here without any guilt! As well as the mental and physical worries working entails,sending lots of positive thoughts here.
Big hugs ladies, G
Some lovely pictures here of some very brave ladies. Technically I dont know how to upload photos but I am a self confessed technophobe. Right now though I would not have the courage to post pictures.
Someone mentioned a meet up. My chemo brain remains and I cant remember who. I am more a people person and that is why you dont see me on here alot. I have though found the site useful but I rather talk to a human!!!
I am off to tract down lush today. Will the red dot help with eyebrows. I certainly hope my eyebrows come back.
I hope you get the drains sorted out. It must be a worry and you are so right waiting 7 hours in A and E is not what you want to be doing on Bank Holiday - the only day you know you dont have to get yourself to hospital. Take care.
Last question someone recommended getting Pathology report - any particular reason. (I just want to hear the margins are clear when I go to see surgeon on Wednesday)
As has been said previously its so ni e to see that everyone looks like. It makes me feel even more like part of a special club. And I think we all look great with short / no hair. Every one of us. It's society that links it with cancer. I have braved the bald throughout, days and evenings and tbh as I have always been out with friends I have never really noticed anyone stair.
Defo want some red dot from lush. My girls will like to have an excuse to shop for me and of course they will get something for themselves. It's will end up being ver expensive shampoo!
I had my right drain fixed yesterday in a and e, but I'm getting about 100ml from each side which is a lot 4 days after the op. Also very orangey yellow on the ths. Being on blood thinning probably isn't helping. Will go see the gp tomorrow as I can't face another 7 hours at the hospital.
Thank you for posting your photos. It’s great to put a face to an avatar!! I feel I know you all a bit better now. Thank you for posting. It’s a brave thing to do and even harder to get used to your new look.
I also understand and respect those that haven’t posted photos. It’s a big deal coming to terms with how we now look.
I don’t think I am particularly vain, but boy, this new “ I’ve aged about 10 years look” is hard to deal with.Chemo is the gift that keeps on giving. Im dreading going back to work looking so different.
G, I hear you and I feel exactly the same. I’m desperate for my hair to grow before I go on holiday. I feel like an ugly duckling. Fat and bald....That’s why I am on a diet just now. It’s the one thing I can control.
Have you now finished chemo? I have been thinking about you and wondered how you are getting on. Good to hear from you.
By the way G, I had an immediate diep reconstruction. I did do a big post at the time, but it somehow didn’t post properly and I lost the post.
Here’s a quick resume. I love my result, very natural. You can’t tell that I’ve had a mastectomy. The only scarring I have is a ⭕️ Patch of skin like this where my nipple was. I am getting a nipple tattooed there, at the end of the year, but the results are good and I would be able to wear a bikini confidently. I now have a flat tummy too, given the tummy tuck op required to gather belly fat.
However, the down side is. It’s a massive operation. I was in hospital for 6 days. I couldn’t get out of bed for 3 days. By the end of two weeks I could only manage to walk to the end of my cul de sac. It was worse than my c-section.
But, after 4 weeks I was walking nearly two miles ( I was determined). At 5 weeks I went straight into chemo... I am now fine, although I have a big scar from hip to hip, I can easily hide it under pants/bikini.
I’m really happy with my result, it’s very natural ( what I wanted) but the op and recovery is a big deal. I was text book recovery and thank fully no problems, but like you I have exercised a lot to stay fit throughout. Good luck with your decision.X
Ladies, if you are looking for the mystery named shampoo from Lush, it looks like this. I just went into Lush and asked for “Red Dot”. Lovely Shi’s Special name for it.
I also take Biotin, from Holland and Barrett’s. I’ve read that it’s supposed to be very good for hair growth.
Have a lovely day.
Shi and Kip, thanks for the info about red dot shampoo. Hopefully going to Meadowhall this week so will definitely pick some up. Very inspirational seeing your hair Kip (great pics) love the colour too, is that natural?
G sorry you are feeling down about your weight as well as other parts of your body. It must feel strange to be going on holiday knowing you are going to feel/look different to how you have in the past but other people probably won’t even notice. I know it’s not always about other people, more about how we feel about ourselves but don’t be too hard on yourself. Sunglasses and a big floppy hat were my go to accessories when we had some really warm weather here 😘
I’ve got my head around presenting myself to the world in the daytime but haven’t wanted to go out out on an evening. I see that as a time when you dress up, make an effort, and it’s human nature for us all to notice each other more in this situation. Well I’ve decided I’m going to say yes to the next opportunity I get. I’ve coached people in the past that everyone has insecurities, even those that appear really confident so time to take that deep breath, paint on that smile, turn on the acting skills and see where it takes me 😁 Have a lovely bank holiday everyone 💕xx
Off for Rads Number 6/15 tomorrow. A short week of it thankfully as I’m really tired. Got someone driving me there tomorrow which is lovely. Only thing is it’s the lady who thinks my face has slipped to where my left breast used to be! It’s a bit disconcerting.
🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔 shall I say something or not?! Lol
Hi All. Lovely photos of you.
Don’t beat yourself up. We all know the struggle of our image change. I didn’t put any weight on during chemo but I am already overweight,(very) and after a nasty comment from the Oncologist made me conscious of what I ate. A bit difficult when on chemo!
You’ll be fine on your holiday. Sometimes I think it’s the thought of it all but when we get there we’re okay. A nice break and sunshine, (hopefully) will do you good after all the 💩 of breast cancer treatment.
Morning, lovely photos DitKat. I took Shi's advice and got the red dot shampoo and used to wash my bald head with it and rub it onto eyebrows too and my hair has grow really well, I still use it and love it. Shi us right though, it's a great bag of surprises when it comes back, I've got a head of grey curls... 8 months after chemo ended.
G..dont be hard on yourself about the weight, I think nearly all the ladies I've spoke to have gained weight, it's the drugs, chemo fatigue etc. I gained 1.5 stone and only now I am losing it, its hard going as now on Tamoxifen and menopause but 9lbs lost so far. You'll get there but its early days yet... But I do understand how it makes you feel. I felt like an alien when I saw myself. Another of the wonders of chemo..
Wow I have missed some amazing posts recently. What an amazing (and glamorous!!) group to be part of!! I have never been one for having my picture taken and this hasn’t changed so can’t post anything 🙄
I think the hair loss has been easier than the weight gain for me (despite always having long hair and using it very much as s confidence tool), I do think though the hair will become more of an issue when it starts to really grow back and it looks like I have chosen said style 😱....I want a t-shirt that says cancer picked it 😆. My eyelashes and eyebrows are steadily going and I am doing the eyeliner trick and filling the gaps in the brows but not sure my makeup skills will be able to paint on an entire brow! Wearing my glasses rather than contacts disguises it somewhat too. So weight gain, despite exercising through majority of treatment as you know, I have put on a good 10-12lbs and I look and feel dreadful (all on tummy, thugs and tops of arms). My diet has changed but I haven’t over eaten, just had to go with what I can eat (each treatment has changed what my body could eat each time due to taste and texture). We go on holiday in the summer and I am dreading what I will look like (with my one boob, my lack of hair, brows, lashes, weight, possible lack of nails, my coating in sun cream so as not to burn as I caught it at the weekend in this country despite sitting in shade all day!!). Sorry, negative post here after all your upbeat ones...wasn’t my intention. Vanity seems uncomfortable when we are still here given what we had/have, but can’t help it.
im using the red dot, it smells of a lovely cinnamon.
If we meet up, you’ll have to join us Shi!
im using the red dot, it smells of a lovely cinnamon.
If we meet up, you’ll have to join us Shi xx
Sorry also meant to say beautiful photos everyone 😘 the Mohawk made me 😁 You rocked it 😁👍💕💕✨✨Shi xx
😁😁😁keep looking forward everyone 💪💪💪coloured hair chalks are good alternative too dikat 👍Jamaican black castor oil rubbed on bonce for about 30 mins before washing and use the lush new (looks like a red dot) shampoo bar 👍it really does get hair back quick 👍start selecting your hair plan photos of how you want to get it styled as it grows and don’t forget its kinder surprise time 😁😁😁it can start off nice and sinead o’connor and then it can go curly whisky whoo 😁😁😁 also start planning your meet up, it kept us all focused and a fantastic meet up to look forward to 👍👍👍go girls 🏃♀️🏃♀️🏃♀️🏃♀️🏃♀️you are sprinting now 😁😁😁💕💕✨✨Shi xx
Ooh lovely photos Dikat. Glamorous lady. I love the one with your gorgeous children. Nice dress btw. Your long hair looks great.
What a coincidence with the shampoo Sunnydaze 😁
Fab pics LB and Stuck at 14. Everyone is doing so well with the drawn on eyebrows and they do make such a difference. Made me realise how lazy I was with mine before as I used to just pluck the stragglers. Funny how all of our hair growth is that same fuzzy peach texture 💕
Great to see you are sharing photos,. Its quite amazing when you see the stages... loved the Bill Bailey..
Lovely photos Stuck at 14. Quite right for choosing your best ones. It gives us a moment to feel better about ourselves.
You apply your make up really well.
I agree, the weight loss is hard to deal with. I need to get down 1 stone and possibly another half a stone. I’ve lost 5lb so far. Very motivated because I hate the way I look just now.
I only just realised how important my eyebrows are and started drawing them on - it makes me feel more normal. 🤗🤗🤗
LB you made me decide to be brave too! Although I have picked the nicest photos I had! My 'diagnosis pixie' which I absolutely loved- always had shoulder length before. My shaved head! Also felt pretty ok whilst I still had eyebrows and cheekbones. And last week, showing my friend how important eyebrows are by just drawing one on.
The way chemotherapy has changed my body and overall appearance, is as bad as the death anxiety for me. But onwards and upwards! 2 stone to lose! Hugs to everyone recovering from surgery and going through radiotherapy, I start on Wednesday 🙂
Hurray! Thanks for posting LB. Good to see you 😍. It is brave, but you look lovely with or without hair. You’ve done a great job of your eyebrows.
Everyone is being brave and posting photos - mine are below - the eyebrows are done in pencil ✏️ 🤗
Dikat, I’ve just opened the link and guess what, I’ve got the same stuff in my bathroom. My friends teenage daughter gave it to me when I had a short cut, after my first chemo, but I never got chance to use it because my hair just fell out.
I’m sure it will be fine to use, especially if it makes you feel better x
Oh Jayne great photos👍 I love them❤️ As Dikat says and I totally agree your sense of fun shines through. You had lovely long hair before. I hope you get it back if you want it!
But I loved the Mohican. Get you, punk 🤣
Im sorry to hear you’re at the clinic with drain problems....Hope they sort it quickly.
Oh Dikat, that colour looks exciting. I haven’t opened the link yet, but I’m sure you’ll be fine. My friend highlighted her hair after 3 months. Why not! Life is for living and all of that .You’re so glamorous, you’ll pull it off!
It’s a coloured shampoo and conditioner range that someone told me about. Although bleach is in the name, can’t see it in the list of ingredients. Quite fancy a pink tinged fluffy barnet for a change 😁
I am sore today. No feeling in either boob or right arm pit. Right drain leaking and has now stopped working, as in no suction, so I'm waiting at the local clinic to see the district nurse and hopefully get it sorted out. Drains have been working overtime with 100ml a day from each side so far 😕
Fab pics Jayne. You have a sense of good fun about you that shines through with or without hair. Hope you’re not too sore. Take things easy lovely lady 💕
Thank you Dikat,
I needed to feel a bit better about myself. I hate feeling like an ugly duckling and it is hard to feel feminine without any hair and a little fat face.🤣 It’s good to remember what you looked like and what you want to look like again.
Yes, I agree it’s a great opportunity to rock The Annie Lennox look and that look would really suit you, especially once we can dye our hair again. It’s really hard to deal with the “grey overnight look”. Annie Lennox is definitely a good role model.
I look forward to seeing your photos
and I’m pleased you want to post them.
I hope you get your pain sorted out. It’s horrible because we really zone into it and the brain can just make things so very much worse. I hope you get reassurance.
My hospital are giving me a pass for parking during rads, which I’m grateful for. It will make a big difference to my stress levels.
Thank you for the info re; creams for rads Mary Kamille much appreciated. I’m glad your rads are going well. ✅
Your post really made me smile! I wonder if I will ever dare to go 'head naked'?
Sunnydaze, it probably wouldn’t hurt for me to top up on my vitD. I’m sure it’s been depleted from all the indoor chemo time so thanks for that suggestion. Love your collage btw, your beauty shines through on every pic. The hair on the top of your head will follow soon. Mine is still quite patchy on top. I was watching some Annie Lennox music videos on YouTube last night, can’t wait until I can model myself on her. Short hair was something I would never have gone for so will have to make the most of trying some different styles when the time comes. Apparently the Herceptin I’m on can slow growth so we’ll see. Will try and do a collage later💕
Stuck at 14, I’m going to have someone with me for rads. It’s not my usual hospital, it’s an hours drive and apparently the parking can be a complete nightmare. I can’t be doing with the stress of that so at least I can jump out if necessary while my driver (hubby or friends) finds a space. I like having people with me for a distraction too😉
Take care everyone 💕
Hi Stuck at 14
It is down to how you feel really. I would take someone for your first one anyway and they do a long explanation about it all first - well, they did with me at my hospital - and you might not remember it all, for one thing. Also, support for first treatment seems like a good thing to me. Be kind to yourself.
I have my husband with me but I don't really need him now I have had a couple of treatments and know what to expect.
You see people on their own, but also couples, daughters with elderly mothers etc.
I know exactly what you mean, Drummerswidow and I now remember that when I saw the 'bald or nearly so, but obviously not just a very short haircut women' (way before I had my own diagnosis), I used to just turn my face away and deliberately avoid looking at them. It's not until you have been there yourself ......
Now I feel guilty and a bit mean for having done that - but it was an involuntary thing almost at the time. It was partly shock, partly the thought that they would not want me to stare, and also a reminder of yet another horrible thing that can happen to people - of which I was going to be one!
I’m going alone Stuck at 14. My husband is working and I think the actual process is quite quick. The time for me will be spent driving and waiting at the hospital incase of delays.
Sorry to just pop on with a question but are you all generally going to radiotherapy alone or taking someone? I'm just making a rota for childcare/company for me and wondering if I'll need someone with me or not.. 😕
Thank you, Kip and by the way congrats on being a Community Champion.
I thought maybe my incident would raise a smile or two but I know I am far too self-conscious about it all. I am getting tougher! Also, feeling generally better now Chemo is out of the way and my body even feels like it is in a bit of recovery mode!
Hospital has provided Diprobase for the Radiotherapy - twice a day - and they know I have skin problems but said don't use anything else.
I have double based emollient shower gel on prescription from GP but they don't want me to use that either - only the Sanex Hypoallergenic (no perfume, no soap, no colour) shower gel I usually use before the prescribed one. In other words I shower twice each time.
I suppose I could use the prescription gel on all the rest of my body though, after the Sanex, and just avoid the Rads treated part of my chest when I do that. Might try it for a while.
Also, every few Rads they do a special 10 minute skin evaluation, according to my schedule, so should spot any potential problems?
Most people on here seem to use whatever they trust and find helpful. Probably the best approach.