Just visiting your thread... I finished Chemo Feb 2013 then had mx (May 2013) and rads (Aug 2013). So feel i am just ahead of you guys in recovery. The effects of Chemo brain were a big shock. I had to get a notebook and write down anything important such as appts and Look Good Feel Better Days.....I wrote a list each day of things i needed to do again this was helpful as i found it was the realisation i had forgotten something (e.g. a friends birthday) that upset me.
It is interesting Angie & Diggy Wiggy that things i now list as important are different than they would have been before my diagnosis. Practically i will be going back to work but in terms of wanting to get away from everything i think this comes to a lot of us at different times. I used to work (paid and voluntary), often felt an obligation to do things for family members and was active at Church. I wouldn't say that i have completely changed but i am very different now. I believe exercise / walking helped me focus during Chemo and have helped me recover as well as i have so i now put Pilates / Zumba, swimming etc at the top of the list. Having more time and altered taste buds / saliva glands / constitution (thankyou Chemo) has helped me find a love of cooking from scratch with fresh herbs etc. I am 52, very organised, always planned things, felt my life was mapped out and it didn't included a Diagnosis of Breast Cancer so having to take things easy and accept changes has been very difficult (i consider myself a work in progress).
So whilst stepping of the 'merry go round' of the daily routine is not an option it may be helpful to take time out whether just for a couple of hours or a few days. I know that's not always easy when you have commitments but walking in the country or on the beach has been helpful when i am distracted / worried /not knowing what the he**s going on. I have been fortunate that i have been able to get away a few times this year (Youth Hostel or lots of voluntary farming stuff around) and have really enjoyed exploring our own country (couldn't face the Travel Ins discussions to go abroad).
Re. Chemo Brain. I still make a list but now on Sunday night of things for the week and find that the fog is really lifting now and i can concentrate / get things right and remember today what i did yesterday (such a show off)......
I know suggesting Distraction techniques may sound condescending but it has really worked for me and whilst i was busy cooking / walking and re visiting childhood holiday places it stopped me worrying about things i couldn't change, i got stronger, felt better and the fog is lifting every day.
Hope you girls continue to feel better each day and take time to look after yourselves.
glad to hear sandy's on the mend, chin up luvvy
i dont want to be a moany - but - has anyone else got this kind of feeling - i could pack my bags, leave home, leave my partner, job and everything, i'm so fed up and i dont know if its because i'm not that well (when i thought i would be), or if its the tamoxifen, or if ive just changed since all the treatment, or if its because i dont look right (well none of us do!) or am i wallowing in self pity (when things could be a lot worse), i dont seem to care about anything, i'm doing a lot of head shaking and tutting for silly things - or am i just a moany witch?
I know things are going back to normal slowly but i think ive had enough and i want to run away.
is it just me or has anyone else had this feeling?
I finished chemo on 8th Aug, had 22 rads, 3 left to go (nearly there!) and haven't started tamoxifen yet. I have found the last few weeks quite tough - it has been harder than I expected. I am not as good as my 'best weeks' on chemo, I have constant lower energy than that and between chemo and rads I started to get alot of joint pain in my hips, and first thing in the morning my hands and feet are also very sore. My night time or early morning hobbles to the bathroom must look hilarious. 🙂 It does improve when I get going. A couple of weeks ago the furry mouh from chemo was also back, I was given thrush tablets just in case this was part of it, but they didn't make any difference. It is a little better now. My GP suggested chewing sugar free gum to stimulate saliva production and though I was a little sceptical it does help. I have had to dial back the exercise I had started between chemo and rads because of the fatigue. Whenever I have mentioned this no-one seems surprised and attribute the majority of the symptoms to chemo and the fact that it can affect you for several monhs after!
your timescale is same as mine, last chemo end of july, last rads 20th sept. this week ive hit a brick wall and have been getting the same types of aches, pains and extreme tiredness that i had through chemo. i had to come home from work early in the week, today i just had no energy. ive also developed a down below problem ( we arent sure if its thrush or the tamoxifen) so doc gave me caneston, but thats just making me feel crappy too.
maybe we are just expecting too much too soon. i certainly feel better than i have for months, i thought i would be fitter though. I'm not moaning tho, poor sandy is really suffering, i'm fine compared to her.
are you on hormone tabs too?
oh Sandy so sorry you're having problems. Hope you are pain free now and sorted. Thinking of you and sending virtual hugs. Mel xxx
I'm out!!!! released when neuts were 2 with oral antibiotics and strict instructions to return immediately if temp goes up. Great to be home but feeling very tired. Just sleeping and dragging myself about thanks for all your good wishes . it really makes a difference knowing you're all out there! .I'm working my way through all the series of Breaking Bad on netflix. Considering whether i too could manage an illegal money generating activity! Hopefully I'll feel better in time to have last cycle next week- 2 doses to go.
My skin is much better now after rads. all the bits that turned black have peeled off and the split under my boob has almost healed.
good luck tomorrow Sandy- just take it one step at a time.
I've read all your other many many posts but just can't keep up with them all, so love to everyone and hope evrything is moving along smoothly!!
love Mel xxx
Just in for a quick catch up.
Philomena, you need a better answer on the altered cardiac enzymes. I believe you can ask for a second opinion at another hospital - maybe that would give you a better answer? I dont know much about cardiology, but if I was you I'd keep plugging away for info.
Sandy, I do physical work too as my main work, and I worry about how I would manage. We had a lot of building work done, 'overseen' by a recommended builder who is not as able as he was. This meant he continued to work and earn, and for me it meant the work was done properly. This sort of arrangement would be my solution as long as I could manage on lowered earnings paying others while supervising them. Dont know if your work would allow this kind of arrangement? Onyways, all the best for Thursday, and worry about the future when it comes!
Lynn, I had my planning appt and they took me right away even though I managed to arrive 10 minutes early following your directions!
They take a photo of you 'for your file' -.I said ' my hair will be waist length when I start rads, you wont recognise me'. Oh, wishful thinking eh?
Final rad zap tomorrow woo hoo!! Just done 2 consecutive days at work and feel fine, although I’m looking forward to a bit of a rest tomorrow and will stay home for the rest of the week. I still have some water retention in my left hand/arm, toes feel a bit queer and my zapped skin is dark pink but not sore, just a bit itchy. Otherwise I feel like me again. I just need proper hair and eyelashes and I’ll look like me too!
Kim – hope you’re having a lovely time! Well jel; been to Portugal a few times, its really lovely.
Judy – Happy Silver Wedding! Nice to have a family do – just like a wedding!
Sandy – all the best for Thursday – I’ll be thinking of you. Don’t worry, you’ll cope – as said by another Angel, you’ve already done the hard bit. And your eye is better too, good good! Hope you’re feeling a bit warmer now. What is it about men? When mine’s doing a job he sees it as his God-given right to leave all the doors open!
Moira – I think the fatigue we all had is a lesson in being old. My mum’s 84 and I really understand her now when she tells me how her energy disappears.
Mel_A – my legs ached like mad for weeks, but it’s worn off now. Give it time, I’m pretty sure this fatigue-thing is something you can’t force so there’s no point feeling guilty (although I do, too!).
Mel – no time off for good behaviour? Hope you’re not feeling too miz and are home soon.
Pauline – I’ve decided not to believe the eyelash story, I don’t like it! Also, I have some that are a few mm long, and some just coming through so I’m just hoping mine will do a phased fall out/regrow so I won’t have naked eyes again.
Judy – hope the rads are going ok and you didn’t jinx yourself! How many weeks do you have to go for? My 5 weeks seem to have flown by.
Phillomena – good to see you’re still doing well. Sort of good news about the angiogram, I suppose. You know better than most of us what’s what medically, but as some of our fellow Angels have shown, making a fuss really works! I think someone told me I’d be having annual mammograms on my remaining boob – which is something I’m going to be following up. Why shouldn’t you turn up for your appointment?!
Manchester Mel – I’ll be visiting my parents this weekend. Wondered if we could manage a get-together? I’ll have to bring the dog so we could maybe go for a short walkies?? I should be free after 3 for a while – dropping OH & boys off at ManU game.
Judy - Your right, I was getting in a pickle but strangely woke up this morning very possitive after a good nights sleep. Maybe that's all I needed. Are you crispier than a packet of walkers yet. Lol. Pleased the rads aren't too bad for you. Keep up the good work.
Mel A - Your right too. I think we have all be through the worst part and this is just the last part of getting rid for me. Have you been to the GP about your buckling knee. My OH had ultra sonic therapy on his weak arm which really helped. Funnily enough for years I too thought my bra size was 36a but found out when I went for my first ever fitting about ten years ago that I was actually 34b. I do hope I get get away with the drains. Let us know if you get to meet up with Debra.
Kate - I still have no sign of any eyelashes. Does it mean they will grow and shed altogether forever and i wonder if it's the same for the eyebrows. Must do some research whilst I'm incarcerated.
Mel - How are you getting on. Thinking of you.
Pauline - Me too. Thanks. Hope your not working too hard.
Lv and hugs Angels. Sandy. xxx