Thanks for this . I too am having such difficulty accepting , getting my head round and dealing with my new identity ; a woman with breast cancer . My emotions areal over the place , and I see to be losing interest in my normal joyful activities .
I hate being to of control and gradually being turned into patient with so little agency .
Just saying , and reaching out to you all
I know how you feel.
I was told my only option was a double mastectomy on Wednesday - talk about pulling rug from underneath you.
take each day as it comes. Laugh one day and cry the next. Focus on the bigger picture - getting yourself better so you get back to enjoying life and having adventures. xx
I was diagnosed in January. Due to the covid restrictions I went to all my appointments (GP, mammogram, ultrasound and biopsies, histology results, MRI, more results and surgical consult) alone. I used to be a nurse and so I was confident I could manage which I did...until they then told me my husband would not be able to accompany me on the day of surgery. That was the day I fell apart. I totally spat the dummy in the middle of pre assessment clinic. I then threw some names about and made some phone calls (not what you know, but who, scenario) and generally kicked some lazy arse.
I too found it very surreal when I was first diagnosed. Because I felt basically fine (I found my lump while skiing!) I found it impossible to refer to myself as having cancer. As time went on (and on and on...but that is a whole other story) it gradually sinks in although i don't see myself ever refering to myself as a cancer survivor etc. It just isn't how we talk in our family. We go for the brutally honest, black gumour approach. Eg. I told my teenager to put sun cream on the other day or he would risk skin cancer. My OH told him one person in the family with cancer at a time was plenty. To which his reply was to give me a hug and say "it all has to be about you doesn't it?" Some I am sure will find this weird and dysfunctional but what I am trying to say is we are all different and process emotions and events like these diffently. Tread your own path. There certainly is no right or wrong.
In terms of crying again everyone feels and expresses their emotions differently. As I said, I didn't cry for quite some time, and then when I did it was more because I felt I had lost control of the situation rather than any feeling of self-pity. (Not to say i haven't had the odd 'pity party for 1' since). This is in complete contrast to when my mum was diagnosed some years ago with ovarian cancer. She was very stoic while I crumbled into a blubbering puddle. I am sure it was a control thing. With my diagnosis I was in control. I know I found my lump early, they reassured me of this repeatedly and I knew that I was under a good team who would listen to me (I did alot of reading), I was given treatment options both surgically and for hormone therapy and was able to make informed decisions. With my mum I had no control. I was just the support act.
I hope your treatment goes well. Of all the things you are going to experience don't let how you express your emotios be something you worry about. Family and friends will be there to support you and in my experience will follow your lead.
Hope this helps a bit. Now go kick it's arse!
I'm just the other side of my treatment , I agree, it is a marathon and my experience has been of a very well organised, well marshalled marathon with lots of support to get you through it.
I don't think there is a normal. For what its worth, I was diagnosed in Feb this year and have just completed my treatment ( lumpectomy, 5 sessions of radiotherapy and hormone treatment for next 5 years ). I haven't cried at all yet .
I think we go into shock and then survival mode. Some of us cry, some of us don't , we all get through it the best way we can.
Lots of love to you on your journey xx
Any feeling you're feeling is normal and I'm sure has been experienced by many. The diagnosis is life changing and when I was first told I probably had cancer I just went blank inside. I had no tears, no panic, nothing. It was actually kind of relief. But the tears did come, the panic has come, and sometimes I'm okay and sometimes not. I'm so sorry you're here. No one wants to join this club. But you've got plenty of company and everyone here is really nice and supportive and you're not alone. I'm only a month out of being diagnosed myself and won't go into surgery until next week. But I expect this to be a marathon with highs and lows and I'm just trying to buckle down and get through it. You'll do the same when it's time.
Newly diagnosed , it doesn’t feel real , I haven’t cried, is this normal ?