I am taking inspiration from you lovely ladies. I have had a good day today out with my mum and friend. Speaking openly about our feelings without getting upset. Mum told me that her and her sister both broke down when she told her. I didn't expect that, not sure why as I am the only daughter/niece. Not told too many people so far and most has been the cowards way out, by email. That way, I don't have to see the pity in their face. That probably sounds callous, but to see sympathy will make me a jibbering wreck and I am trying my hardest to keep it together. I have got a day out with my old school chums on Saturday and I really want to tell them in person but I know that is going to be the hardest chat so far.
Hi Sam. Firstly "welcome". I am a few weeks ahead of you, and due to go for mastectomy on 24th. My head was in a total spin for the first couple of weeks after being told (still are a bit, as I won't know a treatment plan until after the op and all results are in). My advice to you is to take your time to get your head around things, and try not to take all information in all at once, as it can really "blow" your mind. Tell people who you wish to know, in your own time, in your own way, that is comfortable to you. Allow yourself to have "I feel sorry for myself time", and don't feel guilty about that. Accept any help that is offered (whether you need it or not), as sometimes, this can be a way for those who care about you to cope with their feelings. I am still apprehensive about what is happening to me, but honestly, you are still a bit "goshed" with everything. Stay as positive as you possibly can, and be thankful, as I am, that we are all part of a very supportive, and "elite" group xxx
Hi gobby2310, sorry to hear of your diagnosis. I have diffuse margins on a 5cm tumour so the consultants have agreed neoadjuvant chemotherapy to shrink the tumour and clean the margins and the lymph nodes before surgery. If there is any risk of cells not being caught then I'm sure further treatments will be given until everything is clear, so try not to worry too much. It's hard to not think negatively and let go and have faith in the medical profession alone because we want to feel in control of our own bodies and this has been taken away from us and handed over to the experts, and rightly so. Being very independent women also means letting go of control is very hard for us to deal with. Take care. X
I found a lump in March, went to the doctor, who found another lump! Got my appointment for mammogram, ultrasound and biopsy. Had to have op on 24th April as it was cancer. Checked for lymph nodes....ok with everything up until results from Path came back.....appointment yesterday to say not clear margins on one of the lumps and now I am worried. I am a very independent woman and find it really hard to accept help. My husband does what he can but works very long hours and mostly afternoon/evenings so am left on my own a lot of the time. I now have to go in for another op on Monday but what if they still don't catch it all. I am much more worried than my first op......
Hi Sam890, sorry to hear of your diagnosis and welcome to our exclusive club. I was diagnosed at the end of March with stage 2 locally advanced BC including local nodes. I had my first chemo 27th April and have my second tomorrow. I have my surgery at the end of 8 rounds. It's such a massive shock at first and I found telling people made me feel like I was letting everyone down and was going to be the cause of their unhappiness. Like you, I've always been a superheroe so asking for or allowing others to help doesn't feel natural for me. Like others have said, allowing others to help also helps them to deal with it, because everyone just wants to do something. Also, take care of your thoughts because your mind will spiral out of control at times, so recognise these thoughts for what they are. They represent feelings of helplessness due to loss of control. Take care and get yourself nice and healthy ready for treatment - I found focussing on nutrition was a good distraction and coming on here helps too. X
I am the same as you, little miss independent, I am the helper not the one being helped. I have learned to ask for help in my journey, one because there was stuff I simply could not do without compromising myself and my health, and the other when my best friend said to me that by my letting her help me it was helping her deal with my diagnosis, I never thought of it like that
Hi Zara. I used to duck out of computer classes at school cos they were full of a different language and I think I metally ducked out of the room yesterday! It seems like things move so quick, don't you think? One minute life is ticking along nicely and then it is full of appointments. I know it is neccessary but it's just the shock. I know I wont change my mind about going to any of these on my own as that is how I deal with things. My biggest fear is having to lean on others when I wont be able to drive. I am the one normally who drives, organises, and take care of everything. When the table turns I am going to be a horrible person to live with! Perhaps I should be appologising to all around me now!!!
I am only 1 week ahead of you. i am still feeling very detached from what is going on despite having 2 rounds of biopsies, MRI scan, results and discussion about the surgery. it's been quite a week all in all.
I have found it very useful to take a friend along to any appointments where I was getting results/ discussing surgery as they took notes on a pad and paper for me. I ve also phoned my breast care nurse a couple of times when I was unclear on something. It is a bit like being thrown into a whole new world where everyone speaks another language, that you have to learn asap.
Im keeping busy getting stuff done before my surgery which is on June 1st. I think it'll hit me then as my normal life will be interrupted. I ve got through by just dealing with one appointment at a time. i ve chosen to tell friends in preparation for when i will need their help to entertain my son but I am dreading telling my parents on Friday when they return from their holiday.
take care everyone,
Very wise words x
Its amazing how "expert" we become as we go through this journey and the knowledge we gain, who would have known that there were so many different types of cancer, mine was tubular which is apparently a rare type
All the very best for tomorrow, sending you a hug and I will be thinking about you
The few people I told initially all said 'do you want me to come with you?' and I said no to all. Probably silly but I kept thinking, it's all good, no problems, can't be anything bad, not to me. WRONG! However, I am positive, mostly. It's caught early, treatment is quick, team seem fantastic and you ladies are all lifting my spirits on this horrible day. Thank you so much.
You are absolutely not stupid in any way shape or form my dear.
It is an awful lot to take in at once, after you have been through treatment and are out the other, as so many of us are now, you will still be the same Sam, but having had this experience behind you xx
I would just take it one step at a time, small milestones I always say are the best. If you have been given a treatment plan it will set out all the necessary details for now as to when you will have your op etc., so just take each thing one at a time, and then when you feel you need or want to, read up about that part of the journey for now.
I was diagnosed in Sept last year, lyumpectomy and llymph node biopsop Oct and then I had 20 sessions of radiotherapy which finished in Jan this year. I am now back to my normal life, playing lawn green bowls, hence the tag name, working, gardening doing everything I used to do.
Did you take someone with you to the apt as they might well remember more than you did, you tend to not hear anything after the word cancer. When I told people I started by saying it was good bad news, the bad news was it was cancer, the good news was that it was totally treatable, I had a treatment plan and it was all very doable. The only reminder I have is two small scars at the top and side of my breast which have faded wonderfully and the tablet I have to take every day for 5 years, again very doable.
Not stupid at all! At diagnosis i didn't know what sort I had either, (or even that there WERE different sorts) - just, like you, that they would take the lump and a lymph node out! I didn't discover this forum until AFTER my op and now of course I have read everything in sight! As other folk have said, you don't need to read all of it before the op, just the bits that are relevant, then over time you can take-in a bit more. I had my lump and sentinel node out in December and Radiotherapy finished in Feb, and am now just on a hormone tablet for 5 years and feel fine, - just back from a week in Greece, so there is lots of life after cancer. Just a bit of a b*g**r having things put on hold for a bit while you have the treatment. You've come to the right place anyway. If you especially want to know just now what sort of cancer you have I guess you could contact the breast care nurse - I'm assuming you were allocated one when you got your results? The surgeon who gave you the results should also write to your GP with a copy to you, saying what type you have. It was when I got my first letter to GP that I started to understand, looking up words like "ductal" etc, which were in the letter, I was sooo green! Take it a bit at a time. xxx
Thanks Helena. Yesterday I thought, ok, they have found a lump, they will remove it then maybe a couple of weeks later I will be the same person minus the lump. Today, I am very slowly realising this is a longer process with more drugs than I have ever taken in my life. I have only ever had general anesthetic as a child and that is only just dawning on me.
Blimey, how stupid do I feel. You ladies seem so clued up about what sort of cancer and I have realised all I took in is that I have breast cancer and have to have an operation to have it removed with some lymph nodes. I guess I turned off then!
Hello and welcome. It is this feeling of it being surreal that takes some getting used to. The good thing is you have your plan and you know what is going to happen and when, I found this very re-assuring when I had mine as I knew that whatever happened I was being treated and this lump would be out of my body.
I am now 7 months post surgery and nearly 4 months post rads, doing everything I did before, apart from the tablet I have to take every day for 5 years, and occasionally suddenly realising that I have been through this, I am doing really well
Good luck for the 7th and let us know how you got on. Remember we are here to help and support you along your journey, there are a lot of ladies on here who have already been through or are currently going through what you are about to start and they will be able to help a lot.
That is exactly how I felt yesterday. I was looking in but it couldn't have been my life thet were talking about. The leaflets make it more real and the forms with my name on them. I have been given various dates and my surgery is on 7th June.
Hello and welcome to this lovelyclub of ladies who will be able to help and support you through your journey.
You sound positive which is great and will help you a lot as you go forward. I must admit I nearly didnt go to my routine mammo last August I was too busy, phew I am glad I did, mine was caught early, very successfully treated and I am back my "normal" like again, although this does change your perspective a lot, but I can only say for me it has been for the better.
I would suggest that you do not try to read everything all at once. I left my stuff for a few days, the care plan set out all i needed know for the time being, I just dipped in and out as I felt I needed to understand some element a bit more.
You will be amazed when, if, you start telling people, how many will let you know that they have been through the same or know someone has had it.
We are all here to help and support you so never worry about coming on here to ask questions, rant, rave or whatever, there will always be someone who will be able to help.
yes it is a bit of a process and I found I was pretty calm initially - felt quite detached - but had a moment a day or so later when I realised it was actually real and it felt surreal. The info overload is difficult at first - I went home with a huge file of stuff similar to becoming a student again- but you will be surprised how soon you become an "expert" on your condition. Do you know what your treatment plan is yet? You will find this Forum a mine of information and support. I think it is hard for family and friends to completely understand what it is like when you get a diagnosis of cancer, but the folk on here get it 'cos they've been there. At the same time I was surprised at the unexpected support I had from the most unkiely sources, so you may want to tell people in a way and at a time that works for you. XXXXXXX
Thank you for your kind words. My worst task by far was telling my mum. She seemed to take it ok but I know what she is like and she is probably worse than me at this stage. Having said that, the reality is really sinking in. I am terrified! I am a very calm, matter of fact, independant person and feel all that is changing. I am hoping the feeling wont last.
I read the wodge of stuff, felt scared and wrapped it all back up and put it away. I look at it now and again.
it is really scary now, in limbo land and this bit is not nice. I drip fed to friends, colleagues and that worked for me. In a way I find it more scary people telling me that I'm brave or so strong, etc, etc. It makes it all seem so daunting. In reality, we've been caught early. Yes, treatment isn't nice or a walk in the park but we will recover, live, get better. for the majority of us, the diagnosis is not the catastrophe that it once was for our forbears but that legacy lives on and when people hear the C word then the worst is assumed. However, don't make the mistake I did with work by minimising everything. I think my senior manager thought I was going in for the equivalent of an ingrowing toenail op!
Do not google or go on other parts of conversations that don't relate to your situation. You will scare yourself silly.
You will suddenly develop all sorts of aches and pains - the mind plays tricks.
my worst thing was telling my mum but she was ok although I know she is worried. You can get people you trust to tell others if you want to distance yourself from hand wringing.
look after yourself. This is the time to do what you need. We automatically start thinking about other people. Actually, they need to look after you.
I'm seven weeks on from noticing something. Have had somebiopsies under mammogram (so far the worst thing), a lumpectomy and sentinal lymph node removal. Under arm more problematic than boob. Tomorrow evening will be two weeks on. I'm doing a short drive and been out by myself this morning. Listen to your body and do what it tells you.
all the best. The ladies on here are amazing.
Hi. I got diagnosed yesterday and was quite calm at the time. Sent home with dates, information overload and a wallet of books to read. Started to read them this morning and everything suddenly started to seem real. Don't want to burden family and friends as I don't know anyone in the same position as me. Luckily I didn't wimp out of my mammogram and it has been picked up early so I am hoping that I have the lump removed and that's that. I know life doesn't always go in the direction you want it to but here's hoping!