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straw poll for those who have time

75 REPLIES 75
Ninja
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

"Early retirement and holidays. The combination can't be beat."

Aye, sounds idyllic.
But for me, the two are likely to be mutually exclusive unless I can source some income! I'm caught in the "younger than baby boomers" trap and while our older friends finished work when they were younger than we are now, my retirement age seems to be increasing exponentially 😞

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Pre BC I was happy. I had a job I loved, a husband I loved, and kids and grandkids that I loved.

Fast forward to now. Three years on. After surgery, chemo and rads my life is better. Of course, like all of you I had details of my funeral wishes on my PC. and couldn't see beyond that. But I've also determined what is important. As time has gone by I've relaxed a little and thought about the future. I'm now planning holidays next year etc. Life is really good and I appreciate it a lot more.

Early retirement and holidays. The combination can't be beat.

Mal

GIJaneH
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Just read through this with interest.... Glad the psychologist was as apalled as we are.... "rather have a car crash"...mmmm.... nearly died in one of those when I was 12, and most of my family did.... definitely wouldn't choose that over cancer! And I remember years later a counsellor asking me the same stupid question rephrased "was I able to be glad it had happened?" and I remember the strength of my anger. However, on the plus side, what I went through, what we go through does form and shape us (can't not) and the job I do, I do now and do well because of all the ways that experience has shaped me. I'd say "yes and no" to the question.

Ninja
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

So she said "WTF?" then?
lol

Nottsgal
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

I gave the psychologist her book back and she asked what I thought of it. I told her I thought most of it was fairly obvious stuff but there was one bit that really annoyed and upset me. She asked me what it was and I told her the offending sentence. She said 'that's ridiculous, no-one in their right mind would not go back and erase a cancer diagnosis'. She said she hadn't noticed that sentence in the book. I thought maybe because she hasn't had cancer herself she wasn't as sensitive to it when she was reading the book. Before BC, I might have skipped over the sentence without it bothering me as well.

She also said it was good to hear me sounding passionate about something, even if it was passionately angry. She said I usually seem too concerned about everyone else's feelings and say I'm fine.

I didn't print off the comments for her but would have offered her a link to them if she had argued the point. As it was, she agreed with the majority of us.

sunflower71
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Can I add a WTF to this. How can he come up with this crap - I wish he could listen to all the thoughts that went through my head before going to sleep (if I'm lucky) every night and reliving the last few months of diagnosis and test after test after test to find out if I was going to die without seeing my children grow up and sat there at that moment when I told my 3 young children that I had cancer and listened to all those views that I have just sat here and read from all you lovely ladies - makes me want to ........ AAAAAAARGH!!! What a tosser!!!!

horace
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Of course I would so much rather not have bc-I think its a bit of a daft question to be honest.True I've met some lovely people because I had bc but I would gladly not have met them if it meant I had never had cancer.

oldandlumpy
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

These posts are quite anonymouse, and on a pulbic forum, perhaps you could print them out and give them to her. Please let us know what she said

Nottsgal
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

I'm seeing the psychologist who recommended the book tomorrow. I'm reporting 50 saying yes they would go back and erase the diagnosis and 5 who maybe wouldn't.

I will also tell her that I was upset by that part of the book and I don't think she should recommend it to other cancer patients.

Thanks to all who took part

amber32002
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Choccie, so far my life has contained being a young carer to a desperately ill parent who spent much of her life trying to kill herself or starve herself to death, many many years of extremely bad health, various disablities including autism. Also rape, sexual assault, nearly losing my life to ectopic pregnancy...maybe I'm just very used to life being an obstacle course and me having to find the best ways round each thing. Mine is a very individual perspective. Weirdly, all of those have added to what I'm able to understand, and what I'm able to help others through, so although they were/are a huge challenge, I'm not despondent about them.
not sure if that makes sense...
Ann x

ChoccieMuffin
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Amber, don't you think you'd have preferred a car crash or a broken leg to help you assess your life and make the necessary changes? I sure as hell would! As it was we had picked ourselves up after my ex killed himself 6 years ago (b****rd) and I thought we were doing ok actually, I certainly didn't want my kids to have to even consider the possibility of being orphans.

Come to think of it, don't just shove the book where the sun don't shine, add a pineapple or a conker still in its prickly outer skin, or a roll of barbed wire...

enaid46
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

I think it is a stupid comment...I would definately wipe out the last four months. To see my husband, teenage children amd mother cry is something I still have nightmares over
to feel the anxiety in my youngest daughter as she climbs into my bed when i am a bit "off"...this dosent make you a better person it simply changes your perspective in your life
I worked hard before the cancer and when I return I will work hard again
my family have always been the centre of my world and as a full time working parent I have always cherished my time with them.
my eldest daughter was about to take her AS levels and the distress she experienced may have wrecked her results [was predicted 4 A]
she may have to resit her AS year again
cancer is a vicious illness to you and those around you
I am a nice person and would always wish todo good to others -I dont believe that God chose me as I was strong I believe I was unlucky but hope to be around a long time to see my kids grow and have time with my husband
hit the psycholgist with the response on the site as it may give her better insight how to handle people with traumatic experiences
sorry about the rant,,,feel better now xx

amber32002
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

I'm a 'not sure'. Am I enjoying cancer? Hell no. Have there been benefits? Yes. Like others have said, it's made me reappraise life and cherish every single moment with my lovely family and friends, every bit of nature, every moment of happiness.

janipi
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Dx day was the start of a really sh** time in my life and I am often haunted by flashbacks of it like a recurring nightmare. I can also remember the day before where I went to work as normal and had a lovely day with my class (teacher). Said see ya when I get back to my colleagues, but never did as I ended up shaking with shock in my bed trying to take in what was about to happen. Well, it did all happen with every treatment thrown at it and here I am. A better person? I thought I was doing OK before actually. At the ripe old age of 49 with a bit of life experience I was beginning to appreciate my life and enjoying it. Now I have to work hard to enjoy it and watch the cancer cloud above me and hope it doesn't rain on me again. If there is a book signing I won't be shaking this author's hand and would be tempted to wallop him over the head with his wise words.

ChoccieMuffin
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Some really interesting views on WHERE the comment might have come from.

I've already HAD the life-changing, reassess what's going on in your life moment 6 years ago, so really didn't need to have another one, I was already making the changes that needed to be made.

My GP actually said to me right at the beginning that I'd come out of this a better person, my response was that I was quite happy being the person I already was!

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Oh dear.
Yes I have gained some things from my dx - I've tried to reassess my life and what's important to me, and I've gained some friends who mean the world to me. I've also realised that a couple of people whom I thought were friends, aren't.

But yes I absolutely would change my dx and get my breasts back, and lose all the worrying and the fear and the nasty bits and the surgery and the waiting around for results. And then there's the fear and worry my family and friends went through on my behalf, especially my mum who also has bc.

A**e!
xx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: straw poll for those who have time

REWIND REWIND REWIND!!! The mans a jerk!! ERASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

dee49
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

A FFS from me and what f**king planet is he on?

Only good thing to come out of it for me is the fab friends I've made through this site and ditching the sh!tty ones.

Grrr....

Edit = Guess that puts me in the WTF camp.....

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Wow! This guy has rattled our collective cage... and some! I agree with a previous contributor - please let this prat know what those of us who have faced this demon feel. He may be contacted via the publisher of this book - look inside the front cover for the address of the publisher. He should not continue to eschew such crap without redress!

AlexG

sheil
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Have posted already, but I remember my desperate comments to the radiologist who had my boob in one of those stereotactic mammograms thinggies, taking 10 biopsies in the one small area (learned later than this is a 'good thing' cos its small), but feeling the life was being sucked out of me, and shouting "I have such a good fkng life"(yes I did swear to NHS staff, but as I'm one of them I felt I was entitled). Yes my life has returned to some normality, but it will never be the carefree thing it was before when I was one in a family who believed we were immune to cancer.

Guest user
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Re: straw poll for those who have time

If I could change my diagnosis I would. I started to change my view of life and how to live it about 10 years ago. I divorced a selfish childish man who was mean of spirit (and mean with money). I suppose it was classic mid life crisis and searching for real meaning in my life. I started to study buddhism and found it made sense to me. So in my great 10 years, I've married a good man, I've found meaning in life, I've tried to be more understanding of others, had adventures, travelled, backpacked SE Asia, been skiing and sailed across the Atlantic in a 56 foot boat. My plans tosell up and sail around the world are put back but I'm determined to live my life again once this rubbish is finished. It's not stopping me if I can help it, but apart from making some good new friends it hasn't made me view life any differently. My heart breaks for those younger women who have children to bring up. I didn't need to get cancer to live in the moment.

The book sounds patronising and simplistic.

Guest user
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Re: straw poll for those who have time

ERASE!!!
I would want to erase the diagnosis for the sake of my kids and family who watched me struggle through it but life has changed in some little positive ways. I quit my job as a midwife because i could no longer give anyting to the women and i desperatly wanted another baby. I am self employed now, baking and its lovely and i do enjoy it. Would i have quit and done this without the cancer- no i doubt it. Is it fulfilling-no no no.

I dont think cancer enriched my life and i loved my job before IT and resent the fact i no longer feel able to do something i loved from the first second i started training.

S

Guest user
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Re: straw poll for those who have time

It's human nature to want to make good stuff out of bad. That's what this homespun philosophy is picking up on. In reality, though no one in their right minds wouldn't go back and change things if they could. I'm sorry if that sounds offensive to anyone who said they wouldn't (did anyone?) We might say we wouldn't but that's because it's not really an option. If it was, I don't believe there's anyone who wouldn't sell their house and everything they own to make it happen.

Guest user
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Re: straw poll for those who have time

Flippin heck ! I can't believe that if I could go back where I was before the cancer I most definately would YES PLEASE but I do admit I appreciate life much more & have much more time & patients & more caring person I see things in a new light but still would go back

Mekala x

Guest user
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Re: straw poll for those who have time

I havent read all the thread here as the time factor, but if i was CURED then i may look at it differently, it has taught me so much along the way so i can understand some of what the author may be trying to say.
I have found a peace that ive never had before, i lost my complete fear of dying now its a just i dont want to not the absolute fear.
Ive stopped rushing to do things cramming life so full that it was in danger of making me ill.
I have a love of my partner that is deeper than i could ever have imagined
I have an understanding of what several of my friends have been through and some friends that i have lost to cancer.
So i wouldnt want to deliberately go through it but i now understand it. If that sort of makes sense. Oh yes and my life was brilliant before and its brilliant now but just in a different way.

DaisyGirl
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Can't think of anything else to say but WTF???

DaisyGirl xx

sallieannie
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Wow, so offensive. If the author thinks it would be so great to have cancer I will swap him. Definitely put me in the WTF camp!

Like others, I was perfectly happy and appreciative of the lovely life I had before. Not one single good thing has come out of me having cancer. I really resent the implication that I should somehow be grateful for going through this hell (and my loved ones going through it too).

CheshireCheese
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Exactly!

Ninja
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Aye, helping her to get annoyed!

CheshireCheese
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Hi Ninja
Yes, that's what I was getting at - and this person is supposed to be helping Nottsgal.
Sarah x

dancing_girl
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

It's confirmed that my OH is a great support and that I have some wonderful friends and family. BUT would definitely, definitely prefer to rewind. Apart from the fact that I've wasted the best part of a year (not to mention cost to the country)having unpleasant treatment, now that active treatment is over there's the SEs of the Arimidex, bone weakening etc. AND - worst of all - the monkey on the shoulder, as Tors
put it in her poem. It's a no brainer.

Tors poem is in thread called 'Had enough today'. I've just bumped it.
Read it - she has expressed it all so well.

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Would I choose the same dx?
He's joking right?

What possesses people to come out with this twaddle?

The problem, I think, is that the Human condition makes people believe in 'happy endings and because we have so much control over our environment the concept that something is just random and terrible scares us. Therefore there is a need to be able to quantify it in some way in order for us to feel in more control. (I'm using 'us' meaning the Human Race).
And so we (humans) look for a positive even when there's clearly none.

I didn't need any of this to show me how lovely my life was - I knew, I was in it.

Maybe the Psyc who suggested the book and might be in agreeance should read these responses to get a fuller picture.

Cancer isn't a 'magic painting' book where all you need to do is say a few platitudes and everything springs back normal - or an EVen better normal. Nope, it stays grey which doesn't sit comfortably with some.

sunflower_1
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

No why would I want to be,cut.drained,zapped tatooed and chemically altered,not to mention feeling worried and cheated out of normality. I have realised that people care about me perhaps a bit more than I thought,have had time to contamplate and have had a few more treats but I would turn the clock back and delete the cancer and all that goes with it right now if I could.

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: straw poll for those who have time

I'm with Gretchen on this. Of course I would have prefered not to have had cancer if I had been able to appreciate things better without it. However I have had cancer, and I reguarly tell people that I am, almost, happy that I have.
I appreciate mt OH far more now, and he, me. Our sexlife, which has always been on the poor side, is now flourishing. We take effort to spend time together. He even helped with the gardening yesterday.
I would have prefered if my children hadn't had to watch me go through treatment, but they did see it. As a result they are more independant, more understanding of other people and have sometimes been known to do the ironing without being asked.
I would prefer not to have developed a heart condition as a result of treament, or lymphoedema or hot flushes, but I no longer have periods (yey), if I get tired no-one complains if I stop, I have developed a friendship that would never have happened without cancer and that is a friend who I can talk to about anything.
Obviously if these things could have happened without the cancer then that would have been great, but I don't think it would have done, so NO I wouldn't want to turn back the clock.

Mezzomamma
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Put me in the WTF group as well.

Telling someone else to be positive is as helpful as telling someone who is stressed to relax.

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: straw poll for those who have time

its a rewind for me too
i have had to deal with enough cancer in my life without going through it myself to know how important life is

tors
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Just loving "poorliness of the brain"! Like like like!

harp1970
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Would go back to February 4th with absolute pleasure and do not need to have had cancer to appreciate life-mine was just fine before and will never be the same again. Which planet is this guy on???

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Good idea oldandlumpy.
So, do we have a total yet? Yes, No or WTF? And is the person that asked the original Q suffering from Non Cancer Related Chemo Brain?
(Shakes head in total disbelief!)

Ninja
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Cheshire: "By the way, having just done a quick Google, I see that psychologists don't have to have any medical qualifications (compared with psychiatrists who ARE medically qualified). Might explain a lot."

Psychologists are nothing to do with medical stuff. My friend is a senior lecturer in psychology; she is a doctor, but of philosophy. She studies women's roles in society, flexible working (including telework and work at home), absolutely nowt medical. Some psychs are clinical psychs but it's not common.

Trickcyclists deal with disorders (poorliness) of the brain.

oldandlumpy
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

hope you dont mind but this is so ridiculous i am going to copy the origianl comment and put it on the 'things people say' thread

Guest user
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Re: straw poll for those who have time

its just a load of rubbish!
most of us would say we have made some positive changes in different ways to our lives, value things differently, have a different perspective, have learned positive things about ourselves - but thats not a gift from cancer, thats us responding positively to something dreadful. many have listed the losses, so i won't reiterate them, but we are all tied into a situation where we live looking over our shoulders, wary of it coming back, until, for some of us, it does, and then we have to find a new way of dealing positively with it.

Guest user
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Re: straw poll for those who have time

WTF??? from me too. If it's so enriching, let's roll back time and let that darn psychologist experience all our life enriching moments since dx. And then let him re-write his book.

CheshireCheese
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Another WTF response here!

Before Dx I was happy and content, just bumbling along with my OH into middle age and looking forward to old age together. BC has robbed me of that by introducing doubts and "what ifs".

By the way, having just done a quick Google, I see that psychologists don't have to have any medical qualifications (compared with psychiatrists who ARE medically qualified). Might explain a lot.

But rather than debate this point with the silly woman, I agree with the others, just shove her book where the sun don't shine!

Sarah x

Guest user
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Re: straw poll for those who have time

YES, having cancer has taught me some important life lessons
YES, it has brought my husband and I even closer together
YES it has taught me which friends I can rely on and sadly which friends and family members I can't
YES it has made me appreciate life and want to grab whatever life I have left by the whatsits !

BUT NO

Of course I would rather never have had this sh***y disease that has robbed me off my left breast and turned me into a neurotic mess!!!!!

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: straw poll for those who have time

WTF! I would turn the clock back to March 29th (the day before my dx) and wake up on March 30th and go about my life as it used to be. My holidays would be booked, bikini bought, and loads to look forward too. Has it made me a better person? Has it f***? give me back my pre-cancer life anyday. That will be Yes then

moser
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

What an appallingly ridiculous suggestion that somehow its good to have had a cancer dx because it makes us better people - I could NEVER be glad to have had that dx! I was thinking about this the other day - it feels as though it has taken my future away from me because of the black cloud of uncertainty that never goes away. In practical terms I try to juggle scenarios - should I plan for my retirement or should I spend my money NOW as there may be no retirement for me? Should I take early retirement (if this bl***y government actually lets me retire before I'm 150!) or should I carry on working so that my pension is better when I do retire? So I try to balance both, keep my options open as it were ... and it really p****s me off! OK, rant over, but yes, I'm with the WTFs on this one!

Ninja
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Whomsoever wrote that - and recommended it - has a Very High Twat Factor(TM).

That person has never had to live with the diagnosis of a life-threatening disease that will never go away. I want to plan out the next few decades of my life. Thanks to BC, it's all conjecture at the mo.
I'd tell him/her to fec* orf.
Sideways.

lolly73
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Elltiks

of course i would rather be in my smaller house with no bc, but just saying that at least something good came of it.

I also appreciate things a lot more which is good

Nottsgal
Member

Re: straw poll for those who have time

Beverlie, top marks for even being able to look at the forum after your FEC today.

The whole book was a bit patronising but that line made me seethe and so I wanted to see whether I was being unreasonable to react so strongly.