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October 2020 Chemo Starters

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi NAJ

Good to hear you haven’t had any side effects from the letrozole, hope it will be the same with me. I’ve got a telephone appointment on Thursday about starting 5 days radiotherapy which I’m keen to get done. Unfortunately I now have  swollen forearms, hands, ankles and feet, although I stopped chemo 11 days ago, and they aren’t getting better. Ah well........

I only wear my wig when I go out, and then usually with a hat. I’ve decided to treat myself to a more expensive wig more like my own natural hair.  After a lot of research I found out a monofilament, lace front style is the best. I also found out you can get stick on eyebrows! Who knew? £8.50 for 10 and they are supposed to last 3 days. I just hope they are easier to apply than false eyelashes 😱. From Simplywigs. 

My ex used to say we would all be happier if we didn’t have mirrors, (one of the few things he was right about 😆). I’ve got a few hats, but when I get a hot flush I have to whip them off, and then I get cold. I wear one at night too. 

 

Carmen 😷

 

linflo58
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

NAJ

Best laugh of the day ........cross between Max Wall & Gollum.....

this really tickled me, thanks xxxx

Linda 

Not a jockey
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Carmen,

Yes, I'm on Letrozole for 10 years too.  I've been taking it for a fortnight now and no side effects to speak of.  I get a bit hot at night but I've always had that.

My hair is growing well at the sides and back of my head but is looking very thin and fluff like on top.  I can't be arsed to wear my wig - mostly because it doesn't look like me when I've got it on. The people I care about accept me as I am and why should I care what anyone else thinks?  Let's face it - even if people thought I looked like a cross between Max Wall and Gollum they wouldn't be so rude as to come out and say it.

To my horror it looks as if some of my finger nails are going to lift off.  There is a deep ridge on each nail and it definitely looks like everything above it is going to drop off.  I tried to peel a clementine last night and that was when I noticed.  It makes me feel nauseous just thinking about it.  When I thought about the side effects of cancer treatment this wasn't what I expected.....

Take care everyone

NAJ xxx

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi NAJ

Wow, it’s really interesting to hear about your adventures.

Are you taking  Letrozole? I’m supposed to start taking it for 10 years and I wandered how you are finding it? I was on HRT for about 3 years, mainly  because I wasn’t sleeping well and had hot flushes. I had to come off it in August and now have the same issues so am wandering if letrozole will make them worse. It can also cause hair thinning, and Im trying to grow my already quite fine hair back!

 

Carmen 👩🏻‍🦲 

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Linflo58

 

I have tried to keep a brave face to protect my 3 adult sons, as I don’t want them to worry about me too much, as their dad, from whom I am separated, is currently undergoing treatment for prostate cancer, so both their parents are being treated for cancer at the same time! I don’t know whether I would be more open if they were daughters? I’m not ridiculously positive and  I tell them that I’m tired but I try to be fairly upbeat.

Hope your skin heals soon.

Carmen 🌷

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Umlydia

Lovely photo! I had 3 lymph nodes removed in August at the same time as my lumpectomy and then I developed a seroma, when they took out the drain, which was very uncomfortable and was aspirated twice. Initially my armpit felt completely numb but recently the nerves are starting to regenerate. Apparently vitamin  B12 is good for nerves. I have full movement in my arm and shoulder luckily and I do yoga and pilates.

It’s great to hear that you have been out shopping. I admire you for stopping drinking alcohol. I started drinking a bit more when the first lockdown started, but with chemo I cut right back. However I can’t imagine giving it up altogether. 

I love your attitude about your mastectomy and being a brave strong role model for your daughter 😊.

 

Carmen

linflo58
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Umlydia

I know how you feel. They explained lymph nodes to me using the A roads & motorway analogy. I really found the physio helpful, especially the massaging. It’s early days for you yet, just keep up with the exercises. I still feel lopsided, and would feel better without my other droopy boob. I know this won’t happen though, no point in unnecessary surgery, & I hope it doesn’t become necessary! My chest is very red & angry after radiotherapy. I have not changed my eating or drinking habits. I always try to eat healthily & feel I deserve the odd tipple whenever I fancy it. As long as you don’t miss it, then I’d go with whatever makes you feel good. I’m lucky my children are grown up, but I still feel that I have to put a brave face on. You don’t want them to worry about you. I wore my prosthesis all the time before radiotherapy & felt good with it. However, for the last 3 weeks I have been braless, but as we are still in lockdown it doesn’t really matter as I am going nowhere & only my husband sees me.

That is a lovely picture & a reminder that you have lots more memories to make. Take care.

Linda

Not a jockey
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi UmLydia,

After surgery the landscape of your body feels different and it takes time to get used to it.  My left armpit now feels different to my right one. There were some days when I found the exercises really hard but I'm glad I stuck with them because I still have a full range of movement in my left arm and shoulder.  Exercise gently - you don't want to do yourself any damage.  

I didn't drink alcohol before I got cancer so I can't 'blame' that.  If stress can cause cancer that's probably what did for me - in 2018 I had a serious illness immediately followed by the death of my partner. 

Have I changed anything?  When Martin died I adopted the 'no time like the present' strategy and so I've visited places I've always wanted to visit (in this country) and I now cook for a classic motorcycle racing team which has meant travelling to race tracks around Europe (though sleeping in a tent in the car park behind the pit lane is not overly glamorous admittedly).  I'm not a biker but I love cooking and I've met some really interesting people and made new friends.  I could do with losing the weight I put on during chemo so I should probably stop baking cakes but my foster child loves cake and I can't resist joining him eating them. 😂

Lovely photo - I'm sure there will be many more like it in the future.  Martin was a bike race photographer and journalist but I hate having my photo taken so when he died there must have been 10,000 photos of motorbikes and half a dozen of me!

NAJ xxx

UmLydia
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

20200223_114050.jpg

I'm learning about "lymph".  I can feel a tight cord along my arm and a big lump under armpitt. Its painful and getting stiffer despite the exercises.  The nurse said the lymph is all blocked like a traffic jam because the nodes are struggling and I will have sessions with a physiotherapist to get it unblocked over the coming weeks. 

Fortunately she didn't need to drain the scar area she said it was swelling from bruising not lymph liquid. 

I had absolutely no idea I had all these lymph motorways across my body busy cleaning up. 

Did anyone else have this ? I am doing the exercises, walking and swinging my arm every day like crazy, as well as massaging the painful bits now the nurse said.  She said with physio it should go away. 

Before all of this I did yoga and was fit . It's becoming clearer I don't want reconstruction I just want to feel good again in my body. I am definitely going to exercise more, weights or aerobics or something, besides the walking, yoga and swimming i did before.

Also I am giving up alcohol, I used to love drinking, I had a drink every day, wine or beer.  Haven't touched it since diagnosis in August and not intending to go back. My surgeon said at my age my consumption wouldn't have caused the cancer and I could still have a glass of wine to relax. But i thought he was a bit crazy to say that and didn't tell him if I have one glass I often want another one. I have slight alcoholic tendency. I couldn't drink anymore after all of this, I would feel too furious at myself if the cancer came back. And I dont want my body to handle more toxic stuff. 

Also cutting down on cheese ( difficult  in France so not giving it up completely) and having soya milk in tea instead of cows milk. 

Has anyone else resolved to change some habits after all of this?

Especially diary? I saw Shi had cut out diary once in a post. I looked up the studies. In France the doctors still say we should eat lots of dairy to be healthy so i don't bother to ask them. 

On a positive note I went shopping with my mum and got myself some new tops, was pleased i could choose exactly the same style (feminine and tight fitting) and the fake boob works. 

Kids are coming back today. I'm going to be careful to hide my body from my two boys, I think it could traumatise them (9 and 11). But my five year old little girl will have me as a role model to be strong and confident despite having one breast. 

Photo of me one year ago before covid and breast cancer struck. Sharing a lot so thought would share picture of me not sick. 

 

 

UmLydia
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hello everyone

Linda and Carmen yes it takes time to get used to new body... the prothesis they gave me is very soft inside a special post masectomy bra, so I just kept it on all the time at first- even for sleeping. I didnt want to look again !!! The stink factor after enough days of this made me finally have a shower... definitely mutilated. That is how I perceive it anyway. When I look in the mirror I feel curious and distant. 

It's so weird having just one droopy breast I have been having weirder thoughts. About getting rid of remaining breast. For symmetry. And for balance/posture. And maybe i could get out of hormone therapy if I did that?? Going to have some interesting conversations at next appointment. 

It's not flat anymore there is some fluid build up around scar so I phoned and am going back in tomorrow so nurse can drain it- i think with a needle. Never a dull moment. 

 A friend said you are still beautiful bla bla you will soon be back to your usual flirty self. I never thought of myself as flirty. But all of this will have put a stop to that!! 

Have been enjoying the amazing sunshine! And going on nice walks. Kids got sent away for the week so I am making the most of peace and quiet. 

I understand better why people say you have to "battle" cancer. Look as if I have been in some kind of battle.... 

Hugs everyone!! 

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Umlydia

Sending you home the same day seems very brutal, poor you, but well done for getting through your op. Take it easy though, as having a general anaesthetic does take it out of you, so try and rest as much as you can 🙂. Great that you are doing the arm exercises 💪🏼👍🏻🙂.

I guess it takes time coming to terms with a new body image. Mutilation is a strong word, but I feel that way too sometimes, although I was able to save my breast but not the nipple. I hope you find some fantastic French lingerie!

Take care

Carmen 🌷

 

linflo58
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Umlydia

Well done, you’re through the operation. I had mine first, last August. I did the exercises religiously & you will be surprised at how quickly you progress. My arm was slowly getting higher up the wall. I had lymph nodes out too, my underarm was numb & still is. It doesn’t bother me though & is not restrictive. Just feels weird when I spray deodorant. I had physio via video link which I found very useful & helpful. I didn’t wear a prostheses for weeks, had little crop tops that were slightly padded. I still can’t get over how FLAT my chest is, it was never this flat, even as a child. You look in the mirror & see this unfamiliar body together with a bald head & are reminded just how far we have come. Radiotherapy was fine, quite relaxing really. My skin is a bit red now & spots have appeared. I’m completely braless at the moment so as not to irritate it. It’s ok with the right clothing. My nails are fine, they grew surprisingly long then snapped off, one by one, but not yellow or ridgy. 

Good luck with your recovery, make the most of this lovely weather everyone.

Linda xx

 

York-75
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Well done UmLydia, you did it!! 👏🏻
I had a lumpectomy, not mastectomy, but the nodes I had out meant my armpit was numb for a few weeks, which was weird. 
The feeling has gone back now though.

I was so sleepy for about 3 weeks after surgery, needed an afternoon nap!

keep doing the exercises, have a snooze when you need it, another big step DONE. 👍🏻

chesterbrownbear
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Dear Umlydia

I was always worried about Lymphedema, but as time has worn on I’m not so bad. Make sure you do your exercises, and a lady at the hospital said that using weights is a good way to keep healthy. Good news, you’re on the road to recovery. Chin up and love your attitude 💪💪

UmLydia
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hello NAJ and everybody

Surgery went well although I had a little melt down when I woke up because I didn't feel up to going back home the same day. Nausea, morphine, exhaustion, couldn't eat a thing.... they sent me home anyway and I was OK but it seemed rather brutal. I threw up twice on the way home! Felt very sorry for myself and a bit angry towards surgeon whom I usually idolise. So glad it's over now. 

Went back to hospital to have the bandage taken off and cried a bit then thought oh well f*** it who cares. Luckily saw a lady for prothesis straight afterwards so was equipped with fake boob and special post op bra to face the world. My partner hasn't wanted to look at the result yet, that's fine. Maybe it is worse for him than me who knows.... so glad i'm tough though. As soon as scar heals I will get a silicone prothesis and nice masectomy bras. And just get on with life.

My arm feels weird but it's early days. A bit worried about lymphodema. I find it hard to rest have started my arm exercises and going for walks. Kids are away thank God. I needed time to adapt to new body. 

On a much less dramatic level my nails are crap too, had to take the varnish off for surgery and was surprised how yellow and cracked they looked. And my hair!!! Started growing back all white so I shaved it off with a razor 😂😂😂. My 11 year old found that hilarious. It's started growing back white again. 

Waiting for pathology reports and wondering how much radiotherapy will need. I am planning on driving myself, it's 53 km ( about 30 miles). 

Great to have chemo and mutilation  out of the way !!!

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

My fingernails are now flaky, ridged and an appealing nicotine yellow from the EC, but they do seem to be growing back a more normal colour after 11 weeks of paclitaxal. My toenails are a dreadful yellow/maroon combo 😕. Can’t wait to go to a nail salon and have them  gelled bright red. 

I get a bitter taste in my mouth for a few days after each chemo but it’s been okay otherwise, although I noticed my tongue is rather yucky looking. My nose bleeds whenever I blow it too, and my ankles are swollen 😱.

I’m seeing the oncologist on Monday. She was worried about my peripheral neuropathy and on balance I think I will forgo my final chemo on Thursday. I’ve given it my best shot but I think enough is enough. 

I have a little bit of white hair on the left, less white and brown on the right, nothing at the back and about 5 hairs on the crown and some new growth that feels like sandpaper! I don’t fancy wearing a wig in hot weather as I just don’t find it very comfortable so I hope it will grow back before too long.

 

Hope your rash gets better soon CBB.

 

Carmen 🌷❤️🐣

 

 

 

 

chesterbrownbear
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi NAJ

Yep my nails are dreadful too, ridges, white spots and slightly yellowish. I do feel tired but still able to function.  My hair is a mess, will my bald patch at the top ever grow back, plus looking forward to getting my eyelashes back. Still struggling with my rashes and spots, but does anyone suffer with a dry mouth from time to time, not like when you are chemo, but just dry. 💕💕

Karen19
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi NAJ,

I painted my nails dark plum for my last 3 cycles which were Docetaxel. I took my nail varnish off yesterday and I have ridges too. I also have 3 half moons for each cycle.

My hair is also growing faster at the back and sides and is coming back in my natural dark brown colour. The top and crown of my head is covered in white fluffy hair 🤣! Not sure whether this means I was white under my dyed roots or whether this is temporary and will turn brown!

Hope everyone is doing well and that surgery went well on Wednesday for those having it...😘 x

Not a jockey
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

York, LinFlo and CBB thanks for your replies.  

I feel very well these days.  It feels like I've waited a long time for radiotherapy but hopefully that won't prove to be a bad thing.  I do feel well enough to drive and it would have meant a round trip of over 60 miles every time for my friend.  You hear so many things about radiotherapy making you feel tired I figured I'd ask for your advice.  Not much point going through all this if you then kill yourself falling asleep at the wheel on the way home from radiotherapy!   

Does anyone else have deep ridges and white patches on their fingernails?

My hair has started to grow back on the sides and at the back but its looking a bit sparse on top 🙄

UmLydia - How are you?

NAJ xxx 

chesterbrownbear
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi linflo58, like you I drive myself to radiotherapy every day. I’m just over half way through and I do feel tired.  I think it’s to do with the stress of it all plus chemo and radiotherapy.

yes Carmen Verandah my spots are creeping up my neck and on my face and head. They are driving me mad 😬😬

linflo58
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi

NAJ, I have had my last of 15 radiotherapy sessions today. I have driven myself daily. After the first couple I was in & out in 30 minutes. Have felt fine throughout. Skin is a bit red but have put E45 cream on daily. Apparently it could get worse in the next couple of weeks, watch this space.

Good luck

Linda x

York-75
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi NAJ!

yes I drove myself to radiotherapy in Leeds, 22 miles away. I only had 5 sessions, and I felt fine to drive. I have felt more tired since, wether it is the after effects of radiotherapy, the tamoxifen or just the cumulative effect of everything.

Hiw are you feeling now? If you feel ok now, you could maybe start driving yourself, and then ask your friend after a week or two if it becomes too much?

Be safe though, don’t do it yourself if in doubt! 

Umlydia, hope it has gone well today xxx

Not a jockey
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi York75

Did you drive yourself to radiotherapy?  I have to go to a hospital 15 miles away for my 15 sessions and while my best friend says she is happy to take me it seems like such an imposition when I have a car and could drive myself (probably).  Just wondered how you had found it?  I wouldn't want to do anything unsafe.

Cheers

NAJ xxx

UmLydia
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Thanks everyone for your messages!! Good luck Beaglesmum with your surgery tomorrow. 

York 75 I do have regular heart tests every 3 months(scintigraphic-they inject with a mild radioactive product 😨). I phoned the unit about calves and they didn't seem worried at all. Good. Next heart scan is in March so will see. I will remember my exercises!

Carmen hope they will do your last chemo. I had nasty tingly fingers, they reduced the last dose. They said it can be hard to get rid off once it settles... 

Chesterbrownbear that is nasty the fungal infection. I had bum thrush for Xmas !! Maximum indignity. Hope it gets better soon with the wash!!  Is it on your face? 

Going to get ready for tomorrow. Had a lovely day in the sunshine  today was like the first day of spring here . 

Hugs to everyone!!

 

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Good luck Beaglesmum and Umlydia, hope it all goes well for you both tomorrow 🎈💪🏼.

Sorry to hear about your rash CBB. There seems to be no end to the indignities chemo can throw at us. 6 months of being poisoned certainly takes its toll. But we are almost there......

I’m getting tingly fingernails and toes now so may not have my final dose.

Sending positive vibes to everyone, the bald, the semi bald, the pantomime horses, the eyelashless, we are all gorgeous, brave and wonderful women  🙂.

Carmen x

Beaglesmum
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi UmLydia, I hope that your surgery goes well on Wednesday. I have my lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy on Wednesday too as day case

we should all be proud that we have stuck this out and got this far 

York-75
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Good luck for Wednesday Umlydia!

I know you are in France, so treatment might be a bit different. Have you been having echocardiograms with Herceptin? I had one before I started, and have had one more since. I get the impression I’ll have them every 3 months or so while I’m on Herceptin to check on my heart.

 

I hope the swollen calves turn out to be nothing and that you can have your surgery as planned. Remember to do your arm exercises after! Xxx

 

chesterbrownbear
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Good luck Umlydia we’ve all been through dreadful times, if we knew what we had to go through at the beginning, I’m not sure if I could have gone through it all.  Looks like I’ve got a fungal skin infection, everyday I get more and more spots and they itch like anything.  I’ve got a wash to use, so I hope it sorts it out quickly.

I’ve just bought some magnetic eyelashes thinking they would be easy to use 🤷‍♀️, oh well I’ll still give them a go 🤣🤣

Not a jockey
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi UmLydia,

I hope everything goes well for you on Wednesday.  I remember being completely shocked when they told me it was day surgery but actually it was fine.  The NHS were using a private hospital so I had my own room, but I reckon they only give you the remote control for the TV if you're paying!  I was late going down to theatre and I'd finished my book so the TV would have been a welcome distraction.  The chicken salad sandwich after surgery was superb - or maybe I was just starving.

Nearly there.

NAJ xx

 

UmLydia
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi everyone

Masectomy on Wednesday. I'm ready psychologically. But after my herceptin perfusion I realised my calves are swollen and even hurt when I touch them. I would have ignored it on chemo, but mother in law who is also a doctor said it could be sign of heart not working properly. I looked on targeted therapy forum and apparently herceptin does have some side effects (apart from potentially messing up your heart, which of course they told me about).

Will phone the centre this morning just to check. Hope they will say it is normal side effect.

Oh dear was feeling pretty fed up yesterday.... 

Love all your make up advice. I hope our skin looking aged is just a temporary thing. At least we will come out so much more resilient and knowing the value of things. 

 

Shi
Community Champion
Community Champion

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Brow stencils help, get powder (a normal brown quad did ok) and small hard brush and dab in while holding stencil in place, works well and to recreate lash look draw line right next to where lashes would be along and wing out a bit, it creates illusion of lashes. I watched make up tutorials from lady with alopecia on line, she was great. Hope this helps 💕💕Shi xx

Karen19
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Thanks for the tips Carmen. Don’t know about you, but I have a cupboard full of products and medication I have taken or tried. I also tried false eyelashes (the magnetic ones). Took 40 minutes to get them to stick and then I looked like a pantomime horse 🤣.

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi CBB

My problem is getting my brows to match! I also tried fake lashes but that did not go too well 🙀.

 

Carmen 🌻

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Karen

Thanks for the info 🙂. I looked at the CancerHaircare website which recommends rosemary oil diluted in jojoba oil as a scalp massage to use after chemo. They also recommend Weleda Scalp Tonic. Time to do some internet shopping!

 

 Carmen 🌷

chesterbrownbear
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Carmen Verandah

i do put fake tan oil in my moisturiser, which gives me a bit of colour and makes me feel a little better, also cannot go out without painting on my eyebrows. I’ve always had dark well defined eyebrows, and I’m not me without them.

Im am sure that by summer we will all be feeling and looking a lot better 💕💕💕

Karen19
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Carmen,

Despite still having Docetaxel since the start of the year, my hair had been sprouting throughout this part of my treatment. I have recently been using black castor oil followed by the Lush soap shampoo bar that Shi recommended and it seems to help. My eyelashes and eyebrows have thinned, but I have retained 50% of them. I’ve been using a serum on them overnight and every morning I wake up with new lashes. The lashes I have have lengthened as well and are less stubby. The product is called Liaison Lash and Brow Bond. 

York-75 apologies I had confused Tilbury and Trinny in my last post 🤦‍♀️. Clearly Chemo Brain is here to stay 🤣

Hope everyone else is doing well...😘

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

It’s such a relief to hear that I’m not the only one who feels they look much older. Dry skin, swollen ankles, dodgy toenails .......  I’m 63, almost 64, and always kidded myself I looked younger but now I look SO pale and grey. Obviously the no hair look doesn’t help. I’ve heard that applying caster oil can help eyelashes/eyebrows grow back so I will give it a try. I bought some tinted moisturiser and blusher which I use sometimes and I put on lipstick a few times but forgot about having to wear a mask 😷.

 

But onwards and upwards, spring is on its way 🐣

 

Carmen x

 

Not a jockey
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Chesterbrownbear

I'm 4 weeks post chemo and my skin is dry too, noticeably so on my hands and face.  My taste is back to normal thank goodness but as soon as I stopped taking the omeprazole the acid reflux came back.  Needless to say I'm back on it.  I'll try stopping again in a month's time.  The hair on my head has started to grow back so now it's covered in fuzz, bit like a peach, and the hair looks darker on the sides.  No sign of eyebrows or eyelashes yet.  I've been practising holding my breath ready for radiotherapy but I don't think I'll ever make 20 seconds - I'm not even a smoker so that's pretty poor. 

Took my first Letrozole today.  Only 3651 to go......

Hope everyone is as well as they can be.

NAJ xx

Shi
Community Champion
Community Champion

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Chester brown bear, please ring your unit and get rash checked out ❤️Please keep safe ❤️💕💕Shi xx

Strangely upbeat
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

York-75 I definitely feel and look aged, I don’t think the pale look helps.

Funny thing regarding how I see myself, on my birthday in September I had some photos taken while we were out and at the time thought I looked rough, the other day while looking through my photos I thought those photos are nice and I looked healthy, I guess now I know what looking rough really looks like 😂

chesterbrownbear
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Umlydia

when I look in the mirror I don’t look like my mum, I look worse 🤣🤣. I used to think I looked young for my age (now 61), used to go to gigs and festivals, but now, well...

Has anyone one else had any side effect after finishing chemo, my skin is ultra dry, very itchy, neck feels like on fire and I’ve just found spots all over my torso and arms.

 

Karen19
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi Everyone,

I had my last round of chemo last Wednesday and the side effects are beginning to improve. It’s so good knowing that I won’t have to battle oral thrush every 3 weeks going forward 🥳

I am on Herceptin every 3 weeks for the rest of the year and start Tamoxifen after my radiotherapy in 3 weeks time.

UmLydia - I also feel that my face has aged, especially around my mouth for some reason. Not sure whether it is the drugs which have caused it or the stress of the last 6 months. I am hoping that I will start to look more relaxed know that the worst of the treatment is over! York-75 I have only heard good things about Charlotte Tilbury makeup and plan to spend some money on myself now as a reward for getting through the toughest period of my life!

Strangely Upbeat - I love your merchandise! What a fabulous thing to do. Wish I was as inventive as you. 
For those still having chemo, stay strong... this will be over before you know it and we can all move forward to the next stage in our lives 😘

York-75
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Hi UmLydia, glad to help! 
Just make sure the bra fits well and is a full cup and that will be a great starting point. Nurses may well tell you that a branded mastectomy bra is best, but in real life I know many ladies do what they like after mastectomy- as they should! 
I would start with non wired, but depending on your size etc you may be able to branch out later. 😊

 

Yes I am triple positive too, having 3 weekly Herceptin injections- they don’t seem to have any side effects. I have also been on tamoxifen for 40 days so far, I am 45. Some tiredness, drier skin. I’m going to talk to my GP because I just started what appears to be another period just 2 weeks after the last one- hopefully this is just a settling down thing, but I will check, as I’m usually regular. I’ll mention it at the hospital too as I’m there for Herceptin tomorrow.

 

I also feel I have aged- my wrinkles are more noticeable. The lack of hair and the ‘grey’ skin that February brings doesn’t help- I hope that once I get a little sun I will look healthier.. although really I’m sure it is bad for the wrinkles!

I got some of that Trinny London makeup for Christmas- the skin products are nice and light and give a bit of a healthier glow, so I have liked those.

UmLydia
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

York 75 thank you so much, that is just what I needed to hear about bras. Will be great if I can just slip a prothesis inside a normal bra, or sew a pocket into one. Thanks for the advice!! I am seeing a nurse today for post op advice and hopefully prothesis. Glad to hear  you are recovering. You are on hormone therapy aren't you? I think we are both triple positive. How is that going?

Strangely upbeat love your T-shirt. Congratulations on finishing chemo. Lovely to see your photo. 

I find my face had aged so much after chemo!!!! Does anyone else get that impression? 

 

York-75
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Strangely upbeat, congratulations on ringing the bell! And the t shirts and mugs look great, you are doing a fab job! 👏🏻

Umlydia, in a former life I used to sell bras, and I recall the Anita brand had very good mastectomy bras. They used to also sell ‘pockets’ you can sew into other bras to use with a prosthesis, and swim prosthesis and swimwear. Many ladies I fitted chose to not wear a specific mastectomy bra, but instead wore any well-fitting, full cup bra that they liked. Many did not bother putting a pocket into the bra either, unless it was for vigorous exercise! 
Frequently recommended used to be a non wired bra, but I did see some that wore a wired bra too and got on fine. (But most of those were smaller sizes.) 

 

In other news I’m 5.5 weeks after the end of my last chemo cycle, and hair, lashes and eyebrows are sprouting which makes me very happy! Another few weeks before I dare to go bare-headed outside I think, but after what seemed like a slow start it has picked up speed a lot after week 4!

 

Hang in there everyone! Xx

Shi
Community Champion
Community Champion

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

👏👏👏👏💃🏻💃🏻💃🏻💃🏻Well done ❤️❤️❤️❤️ Fabulous designs ❤️❤️ You have done amazing. I hope you clanged that bell loud and clear ❤️❤️❤️ And hope you had trust like mine was where we all clapped and celebrated with anyone who rings bell ❤️💕💕Shi xx

Strangely upbeat
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Big day today, last chemo session, picc line taken out and I got to #ringthebell I had an audience of all the A6 staff which I wasn’t expecting and it was more emotional than I expected it to be.  Whilst on my journey I have designed some merchandise, 25% of all sales is going to @breastcancernow and 25% to @maplescancercare which is a local cancer support charity.  If anyone would like to share the importance of checking your breasts and help raise funds for these amazing cancer groups, please click the link:    https://www.richardedmond.co.uk/collections/coming-soon-dick-ed%c2%ae-clothing-collection

Over £300 has been raised so far 😀
#kickingcancersbutt #cancersucks #breastcanceraware #bepositive

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UmLydia
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Thanks a lot NAJ that is helpful. I had a look at Amoena they look nice. It's a really depressing thing to have to do find a bra for a prothesis. I already struggled to find one that fit before. I will stop worrying about it and wait and see after the operation. I do have a date, the 25th of Febuary!

Mrs Mcquincey that sounds tough. Did they find an infection in the end? My temperature went up a few times up to 38.5 but there was nothing wrong. I think it was my body's reaction to the white blood cell injections or to the chemo. It will be such a relief when you finish, but three sesions must seem like a long way to go. Courage!!!

It's true in a few months things will seem brighter, we were all having chemo at such a tough time with lockdown, winter weather, covid psychosis... we all doing great 

 

chesterbrownbear
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Dear mrsquincey, I do feel for you, try not to worry too much you’re nearly there. Just think come the summer it will be so much brighter.

Today I have a Dexa Bone Density Scan, I seem to be living up the hospital more and more. Breast clinic Friday, COVID swab Saturday, and first of 15 radiotherapy sessions Tuesday.  These are a much easier compared to chemo, so it will be a walk in the park 🤞.

Good luck to all 💪💪👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻💕💕

Carmen Verandah
Member

Re: October 2020 Chemo Starters

Thanks for the Respire link NAJ 🌻🎈