Mermaid, Here's the link, it's quite a long piece but definitely worth a read
Hello Mermaid, I am 8 months since the end of treatment and about 15 since diagnosis so also in the same boat regarding finding the way forward. I attended the Hope course run by MacMillan and just like Mai I found it amazing and I've found some great new friends who are local and fully understand how this all feels. I have had a single MX and no recon (my choice) and am finding that OK 99% of the time, with my knitted knocker you'd never know but I can understand how you feel about looking at it. I'm on the Flat Friends page too, perhaps take a look. Are you on any hormone therapy? I take Tamoxifen and find the SEs of that more annoying than anything else.. It really is a hard time when treatment ends and you are expected to bounce back. I read a really good article called After The Treatment Ends which summed it up perfectly... I'll find a link for you. I think everyone I've spoken to has ups and downs especially around appitments and check ups but they all say it gets easier.. Best piece of advice I was given. "Be kind to yourself". Think what you would be saying if it was a friend telling you how they feel and then tell yourself the same... We are a lot harder on ourselves than we should be.. We've been through a lot.. There's no time limit on how we feel we just have to take it slowly.
Keep on the forum and we'll do it together
Mermaid, Are you able to wait for another attempt at reconstruction or have you decided on “closure” as you are? There is a group called flat friends which offers support for coping post-surgery. May be worth looking into. https://www.flatfriends.org.uk/
Another thing I found really helped me in my first year was taking part in a couple of sponsored events. I mixed with others in the bc community and was able to set goals for keeping fit. Just a couple more ideas for you to think about. I found getting involved in community things took the focus off me a bit. Sending hugs. Xx
I've had the left breast removed ,had implant ,and exspander both failed , I find it real hard to cope with looking at it , I have the moving forward in November, I already missed 1 appointment for it as i got to anxious over it , and I've always tried to put the cancer to the back of my mind , ive gone back to work part time but finding it very hard , but thankyou for your reply
Mermaid, there is no deadline which you have to meet. If you manage some good days then that’s great but the down days are understandable. There are multiple things that we have to accept and it’s not easy to accept at times. I think we feel so grateful that we are alive after treatment because that’s all we’ve focussed on throughout treatment but then we have to face the realities of what we’re left with. Have you had counselling? Are there things you can do which you are still able to enjoy? I always find hiking is good for my mind. Is your ability to continue working affected? Xxx
I think it's better to think of it as finding the new you and getting the new you's life back on track - if that makes any sense. It is a big thing to go through, and even if you are very zen and practical through the treatment stages I think it's often much later on when we actually register what has happened and the changes on us....let alone side affects after treatment, of hormone therapy, physically, any concerns about risk of recurrence etc.
You might want to consider going on BCC's moving forward course. I went on it back in 2015, about a year after my diagnosis, and found it really helpful, useful tips, plus actually talking about issues thoughts and feelings with other women and all well facilitated by rep's from breast cancer care. It was all very equal, and unintrusive, so if someone wished to listen and not say so much they could and others who felt they wanted to talk more about any points could do so too. Everyone was lovely, understanding and mutually respectful, and hearing from others who have gone through it, regardless of differing diagnosis and treatments, was far more valuable than I had imagined!
If you look under courses and event on this website you'll be able to find dates and locations of forthcoming courses.
You didn't say anything about your circumstances and any particular aspects you feel haven't reached the new normal goal. If you want to expand it may make it easier for one of us to help?
It does get easier as time goes on.