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Feeling like a fraud!

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Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne I have received you PM and replied with a quick response this morning, as I was on my way to rads.
Thank you so much for the information, I will PM you again later with some thoughts xx
Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Andi, 

I’ve finally sent you a PM, I hope it helps! 

Butterflyflyfree, you’ve really had it tough, I’m glad you’re coming out of rads but take it easy for a while, won’t you?! If you try and do that then it gives permission to us to do the same! 

 

I’m feeling steadier again...ridiculous that a sane person like me should get emotional but listening to others I guess it’s pretty normal. I spoke with a BC nurse the other day who said to make myself a priority and although that’s really alien to me, and to most of us I’m sure, it rang true! I totally agree with her! I think that when we can love ourselves despite all our faults and failings and wonky, weird looking, blue, swollen, flat, or bulbous scarred breasts and axiilla then we can develop the inner self esteem and self confidence which we need in order to make time for ourselves without feeling guilty. 

 

Im sure I’ll still have wobble moments, but I am really grateful to have the ‘sisterhood’ of good caring advice around me from all of you!

 

Now...I’m still waiting for rads which start on 7th...I can’t wait for the ‘fun’ of driving for an hour or more to get there for the 10 minutes needed, and lying half naked on a hard board with a machine above me!

Onward to victory!  🙄🙄🙄🤪🤪🤪🤪

xxx

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Butterflyflyfree,

Hope your treatment goes well, thank you for the kind words. 

Love to all on this journey xxx

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne

Just reading your post and the contributions on the thread from other ladies and wanted to say how much I identify with your comments.
I've also had an early stage small tumour, wle and just started rads
All your reactions and feelings are just normal.
Like Helena I was waiting 9 weeks from surgery to starting rads and just wanted to get it done so I could get on with my life.
I too had a massive weepy session on my first rads appointment. The journey to the hospital took an hour which was stressful in itself and as we pulled in to the hospital car park I just broke down.
I couldn't process that I was there for cancer treatment but all the hospital signs made me very aware of that fact.
Often when it is several weeks since surgery we forget about hospitals, scans and appointments but now I've completed the first 5 of 15 sessions and things are moving along.
I was interested in your comment that you are not taking the hormone blocker meds and that your onc was OK with this.
Can you let me know your reasons? I certainly wasn't given an option on this -I'm on Letrozole-and am concerned about potential joint issues as I have osteoarthritis.
I would really value your opinions and why you made that decision if you are happy to share, but send me a pm me if you wish
Hope you are feeling a little more relaxed and enjoying the lovely sunshine xx
Community Champion

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne

 

Oh for goodness sake, I do wish sometimes these people would stop and think about what they are saying and the affect it will have the person, he probably thought he was being reassuring in his own way.

 

I was nine weeks past surgery before I started my rads and remembering feeling so frustrated as I just wanted to get on with it so totally understand the way you are feeling, but you will get there mate.

 

It is absolutely not ridiculous to feel sory for yourself, we all feel that way from time to time and this is why it is lovely having this forum because there is always someone there who understands what we are going through.

 

When I had my planning apt I was expecting to get all my dates but was only given the first day, then at that I was given for the rest of the week and then told I would be given the following weeks date on the friday.  This is the part that I found so frustrating because my life was ruled by this one lappointment every day, I remember the lovely nurse asking me how I was and I just burst into tears, saying I had had enough and didnt want to do it anymore as I wanted my life back.  Loads of tissues and a lovely hug and I was having my session and on my way home.  Once you get started it will go quickly.

 

I remember when I told the ladies at work about the blue dye and the effect it would have on my breast, they nicknamed me "bluetit" caused a load of hilarity

 

Honestly your inner strength and spirit are still there, they are just hiding at the moment.

 

Sending you loads of hugs

 

Helena xxx

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne and Jo, it’s taken me months to realise that this is all happening to me, and still think I’m not quite there yet. Am hoping some psychological support might help me. I have found it’s the simple things that upset me the most..the smell when I lost my hair, not being able to taste properly, not being able to have a pedicure and paint my toes this summer, and what to wear that doesn’t make me feel like a patient when attending hospital for appointments and needing to keep getting undressed! I too took photos after my op for reassurance, a bit embarrassing when you’re trying to find a random photo amongst the many boobs to show someone! 

 

It all happened so quick for me too, from diagnosis to treatment was 10days with appointments for scans in between. But after 8 rounds of chemo and mx, I have 4 radiotherapy sessions left and then continue with 3 weekly Herceptin and Pertuzumab until October when I’ll have another scan. Apparently I’ve lost the “ill” look in my face, and have ditched the hat this week so sporting a very short and very grey crop. But as I say it still feels surreal. This forum has been such a comfort knowing there are other ladies who are going through treatment at the same time, I am so grateful for all the support.

 

Good luck for your rads ladies, you’ll soon be out the other side. Hugs to everyone. Xx

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne,

Good to see you. Just wanted to say, I too am a very positive person, interestingly enough I would say I feel a different person since my diagnosis. Couldn’t tell you why but just feel different. Not in a negative way but just different. 

So these experiences in our lives affect us in different ways. I was being so matter of fact about it and because I was diagnosed on the Thursday and had my surgery the following Tuesday, I didn’t have much time to think about it. It wasn’t until a good 3 weeks later It dawned on me that this was quite a major thing! 

You are not a fraud!

I start my rads next Thursday, so pleased to have a date, it is frustrating not being given definite dates.

We are all here for you 😀

Jo

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Seabreeze, it’s so kind of you for asking!

 

I’m getting exhausted by the travelling and lack of hospital parking and I’ve not even started radiotherapy yet! 

 

I had another appointment yesterday, it was one of these ‘chat’ type appointments about what the CT scan is going to be like. The doctor was nice, but quite dismissive  and he said it WASN’T.....  “A SERIOUS CANCER”!

Now, for someone like me to hear that it is absolutely guaranteed to cause me to be back to feeling like a FRAUD  again! (I guess next time I’ll not bother with screening and wait until it’s spread throughout my body so that I’m told it’s a proper cancer! As you can tell I’m a little disappointed by his thought process!) I guess some consultants are just better with words than others! 

 

Sometimes I feel that my inner strength and fighting spirit have sapped away! My usual self confidence has left me. Yes...I’m feeling sorry for myself! Ridiculous!

I really feel that there should be a plan presented to us up front telling us of an approximate timeline to all of this, there have been so many things I’ve had to cancel, places I should have been, and some at the last minute! Plus I’ve not seen my grandkids since the diagnosis because of sudden appts (they live at great distances so planning ahead is a must).

 

There are times I find myself with tears streaming down my face for what feels like no reason, but doing that in the middle of paying for a bra in M&S, or simply walking along the street can be rather embarrassing! The upside is that I now know every toilet and changing room in town where I can hide in until my red eyes become clear again!! 

 

Perhaps we should start a new thread about....’Suggestions for which places to hide in times of emotional breakdowns! ‘

 

The scars are not as vicious, everyone here was so right, of course, and I started taking photos for reassurance. That was good advice! The blue dye is lingering but on the plus side I now have different coloured boobs...who wants matching colours of breasts anyway! 

 

For many reasons I’ve made the decision to stop taking tamoxifen, Hormone Therapy is not right for me personally. The two oncologists I’ve seen both agree with this. However, I mentioned it to both my oldest son and husband who are far more knowledgable than the oncologists are (obvious sarcasm here) and they both flipped, so I think I’m just going to have to take it for a while until they forget about it and I can stop! 

 

So Seabreeze, you can tell you asked me this simple question at a time I had no one to talk to about this! Thanks for asking me, and I apologise about the long protracted answer! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne,

Wondering how are you getting on recovering from the op and the rest of it!

Seabreeze

X

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

So glad you are feeling better, let’s keep in touch to compare notes 😀 we are all in this together!

Fancy seeing that fundraiser! See it as a sign of support from where you least expect it!

Shame about the gloomy weather today, was enjoying the sunshine! 

I am going shopping with my Mum to buy a couple of crop tops and creams for rads, so I am prepared. Still waiting for a date for planning session.

Have a good day!

Jo x

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Thanks Jo, global warming has nothing on all our meltdowns!!!

I’m nearly back to my proper self again and my positivity is nearly back up there!

 

On Saturday I had my first proper journey out shopping, and inside the shop door was an exercise bike with riders raising funds for Breast Cancer Care! I donated money then spent the most of my time in store pretending to gaze into the freezer section so that people couldn’t see the tears dripping down my face! Of all charities to see on my first outing!!! 

 

I’m glad you said three weeks, I’m still pushing myself really hard but keep falling asleep, I think that as women we are too experienced at pushing ourselves so find it hard to stop!
My scars are not as bulbous as even a few days ago, I wish I’d taken photos like you have in order to compare it. I’m looking forward to the pain easing!

 

Thanks Jo, all the best with your recovery too. X

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne

 

Just wanted to send you a hug. I had surgery on 27th Feb, WLE and SLNB, so a little ahead of you time wise. I was also very surprised at the size of the incision, but just as all the other wonderful ladies on here have said, they do fade. I took photos of mine as a record and especially the last couple of weeks, it has really looked ok! You are bound to be swollen for a while.

 

I felt really tired for a good 3 weeks.

 

I was fine for the weeks after surgery but then had a meltdown last week, you are not alone in this.

 

Hope you are feeling better today, try and get outside and enjoy the fresh air, feel the sun on your face and know we are all here for you!

 

Lots of love 💕 

Jo xx

 

 

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Jangar50,

 

Ive just read your message, you were obviously as shocked as I was, I wish we had been better prepared for the end result! However, like I suppose you’re saying, my end result has not yet happened, and one day if I can have a check up and the scars have faded so much, then the end result of having scarring will be ok. In comparison to what could have happened if I’d (we’d) not had scanning then that end result would have been far worse! 

Xxx

Highlighted
Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Thanks!


I felt stupid after my meltdown, I think I was totally exhausted, I never ask anyone for help and am the one that usually gives strength to other people. You were all so lovely and really gave me more advice and comfort than you could realise.

 

When you all said about scars fading, I remembered that in previous operations I’d had they had faded and become more natural looking, but I think the reason I’d not thought about that was because a Breast is more visual than the places my other scars are, and the core biopsy mark was still as bold as it was when it was done. These wounds are far more lumpy, I had just thought they would be smoother!


Seabreeze you’re right, the twists must have been the way I was lying, they also follow the natural fold lines there, so in hindsight i suppose I’m impressed at how the surgeon did this!


Juliwulie, like you said, I think a pre warning of what it might look like and how big the scar could be would have been good idea! I was given a good explanation of how big the lump was but I’d just presumed the scar would be about the same size (sometimes our minds don’t want to think of these things)!


Optimissy64, the chemist gave me Savlon this morning, and I’ll definitely get Bio oil ready for when the wound has settled. Thanks!


Helena, I hadn’t even thought about them being checked by the oncologist to see if they’re ok before radiotherapy, that’s good to know!

 

I’m grateful to you all for replying and not judging, and also for telling it like it is. It’s good to have somewhere like this to turn to for advice, and with all of you who have been through it!

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

I felt exactly like you!  I was so relieved at the cancer being removed I never thought much about how I would look after. BUT...I am now threee years post surgery, rads etc, and the scars are just thin silver lines.  I promise you, they will get much much better.  My chest was horrific, blue, green, brown,bruising scabs, raw looking, it was truly horrible.  It will get better, I actually took a photo every second day, and looing back you can see the bruising and swelling going down week by week.  You are only just over the surgery, and this is the worst it will be.  It will only get better.  I've just had my 3rd year mammogram and each time I go, the nurses always comment about the neat scarring.  I so feel for you, because I remember looking at my chest when I first had to change the dressings and almost fainting!  Take care of yourself, you've been through a lot, but it does get better. xx. 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne,

 

Bags I'm Tigger in Helena's group hug pic!

 

It is bit of a rollercoaster going through treatment, so quite natural to feel as you do at times. We've all been there.

 

The scars will fade, as others have said here. Even the medics have to take a second look to see my lumpectomy scar. I had 3 nodes removed and did have a bit of the twisty effect there (I think it must be due to the angle they have your arm at when they remove the nodes) and that has also faded and reduced over time.

 

Because I waited quite a long time before having surgery for rather significant asymmetry, I now have a third op area, but again it is fading and the slight puckering reducing (that was mid Dec). I should add because the first scars healed so well I have every confidence the latest will continue doing so.

 

It's always harder to see when the temporary scabs are along the op line. Let the scabs over the healing scar gradually clear away in their own time (which will happen soon), the scars will then be a deep pink and gradually fade. Once the swelling goes down (which again can be a slow gradual process) the shape of your breast near the scars will have a chance to readjust. Plus it takes about 6 weeks for any internal stitches to dissolve so bear with it, it will get much better. The pain will reduce and go too. Keep taking the painkillers. And do the exercises on the post op sheet.

 

I should add, I also totally understand the feeling that it's nothing as compared to something else that is going on. I felt that way due to my partners sister having been diagnosed with lung cancer at a late stage, not that long before I was diagnosed. I felt like I couldn't complain because she, poor thing, didn't have a chance, whereas I did. However, whatever we as individuals see as being more significant, it doesn't alter the fact we have been diagnosed with breast cancer...so it okay to feel a bit low at times, particularly when you are in such early stages of it all. 

 

Have you asked your partner directly for a hug when you feel like a hug is what you need? He's probably just trying to be positive (and wondering what else he can do), so just tell him that's how you feel (and it's hard to explain to him how you feel).

 

One day at a time. Listen to the birds sing, catch a ray of sun (if you are lucky enough to have any fleeting rays today) and be kind and compassionate to yourself.

 

Sending big virtual hugs,

Seabreeze, aka Ms Clingfilm, aka Tigger.....

XXX   

 

 

 

 

Community Champion

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne

 

Oh my darling if I was with you now I would give you the biggest hug ever, but this will have to do from us all.

 

group hug.jpg

 

Keep in mind that it is still very early days yet, you are only 9 day post surgery and the aneasthetic will still be playing havoc with your system.  You have had major surgery, it is not a little op so never ever feel a fraud.

 

Never forget that this is exactly the place to come to when you are feeling like that because we totally understand you and what you are going through, we will support you through all of this. And you do not have to apologise for anything mate.

 

I wish I could show you my scars, they are both probably about the same size as yours, one under the arm and the other at the top of the breast where the tumour was.  In the early weeks they were very red and swollen, but honestly they look like normal creases now and in fact I completely forget that I have them now.  If you have not had surgery before it is a big shock but I promise you they will settle down.

 

By the time you have your rads it will have settled down and your oncologist will check your breast when you go to see them prior to your planning appointment to make sure that they have settled down enough for rads.

 

This is a little hiccup and it always seems to get us in the early hours of the morning when it is quiet and we have nothing to distract us.

 

I know I have said it already but honestly, and you can see that Optimissy has said the same thing, in a few months time you will not even notice them.

 

Sending you loads of squidgy Helena huggles.

 

xxxxx

Community Champion

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne

how you are feeling is understandable so no worries about having a meltdown. But - be reassured the scars do improve - tremendously. I remember my scar for the SNB was much worse in appearance than the WLE one - sort of puckered and red. Now I can hardly see it. Ditto the WLE one - about what I thought was 3 -4 inches long after surgery; now - well, probably about 2 inches or so, and so faint you have to look hard to see it. If i had ever been someone who goes topless on the beach (I'm not!) I would have no hesitation in doing so now. There is a slight difference in size/shape of my boobs but nothing much worse than many women have - few of us are completely symetrical even without having surgery. Your boob is probably still bruised.

 

Once  rads are over you could ask your nurse when you can start using Bio oil - it is really good for both old and new scars and I used it to good effect. Paradoxically, I thought the scars healed a lot better after the radiotherapy, as though the radiation was having a healing effect, but that might just be my imagination and they were healing anyway.

 

All will be well - take care. xxxxxx

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne there is no need to apologise. I felt exactly the same. I was so surprised the size of my scar and how awful it looked in my eyes. I wish I'd been warned then it wouldn't have come as such a shock. I thought I would never get over it as I couldn't even look at my scars. It does get easier honest. My advice to you is keep putting loads of cream on. I finshed my rads weeks ago and yes I still put my cream on twice a day and plenty of it. Don't worry about having rads either-I was ok.

I too have other things going on so I know it's not easy.

Hear to talk or listen anytime.

Julie x

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Oh my goodness, I am sooooo sorry for my meltdown, I broke my unwritten rule of never  writing anything when being overtired and emotional! I’ve tried to edit this but can’t seem to, so pleeeease forgive a time of emotional and ohysical weakness! 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Very emotional and low! 

 

Because of my ‘feeling like a fraud’ feelings I’m back here again, I don’t know where else to go to! Need help!

 

Surgery 9 days ago now. 

 

I’m exhausted....want to sleep all the time, feel overwhelming waves of sickness, sore on Breast and especially underarm. I’ve only had a WLE (but it’s visible on cleavage with v-neck clothes), SNB and 2 nodes, so I have absolutely no reason to feel upset by all of this, but the dressings were taken off my scars today so I saw myself for the first time. It looks awful! I wasn’t expecting scars of over 2 inches and 3 inches. I hate the way I look, I think I was expecting the scars to be much smaller. Under my arm doesn’t even look like a scar, it looks like my skin has been wrapped and twisted around!  My Breast looks puckered, lumpy, deformed. The thought of radiotherapy starting now fills me with dread...it’s just the thought of anything else being done to me!  

Husband doesnt understand he tries to comfort but just sounds patronising,  and I can’t tell my family just how bad I feel. 

I just need comfort...arm around the shoulder stuff!!! I have another major, negative thing going on in my life right now and feel this is all too much. 

 

I feel so upset but feel I can’t complain when others have it so much worse than me!  Can anyone relate to this or am I just making something out of nothing? I used to feel positive and dismissive but now I just 

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne 😂😂😂 you are so funny. Seriously though hope you are ok after your bath mishap!! I seem to remember the dressings they used after my op were quite waterproof and they said I could shower as soon as i felt up to it. I remember standing with my back to the shower so I didn't get the full force of it on my op sites. Hope you feel better anyway just for getting washed!!! The exercises were the ones in the leaflet they gave me. Best start them asap so you don't get lymphedema etc. I still go them occasionally as they help during radiotherapy and after too. Hope you continue to recover well. Make sure you don't overdo things the first few days xxx
Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Seabreeze, I love you! 😀
You sound as though you’ve had plenty of experience with cling film, perhaps you could write a ‘how-to’ book on how to keep clean with breast cancer!!!

I thought I knew better than you all so.....
Sitting in a shallow bath (an ugly sight), I lent over a little sideways and tipped my head forwards into the water. Feeling very proud of myself for not getting the whole of my Right arm/breast wet, I jiggled my head around....and fell in!!!!!
Somehow I got the whole of my Right side wet, except for my arm pit and breast! How that’s even possible is beyond me!!! 😂🤣😅! I now have bruises on my left side! Why I didn’t try the jugs and cling film are beyond me....cling film would have been the obvious one!!!!! 😜

Brilliant idea about washing before the dressing is changed, I’d never have thought of the either! I just feel sorry for the poor nurse changing under an arm pit which has had no deodorant for so long! 😧

Alibobs, physio? I’m doing gymnastics in the bath, what more’s needed?!!!!! 😑😑😑
Xxx



Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne,

 

First line of your post mad me laugh out loud.

 

Go with the post anaesthetic waves of tiredness while it gets out of your system.

 

Re hair washing....

 

For all 3 of my op's I went as long as I felt I could without washing my hair...the BC nurse had told me the dressing was slightly waterproof (just don't soak it, I was told). However, keen to keep the dressing and wound dry, when I reached the point of feeling so yuck-a-roo I was desperate to wash my hair, I tried 2 techniques:

 

1 - Clingfilm! At the risk of this sounding like preparations for some kind of fetish party, I wrapped myself in cling film on the op side, going round the chest first, then up and over the shoulder to stop gaps where water may be able to seep down.  I got in the shower and tried to wash my hair avoiding getting too much water anywhere near the area where water may run down to the op side boob. So tipping head back, to the non op side etc. I also styled my hair to one side for a while (the side easiest to reach) while my underarm was tight.

- If attempting this technique make sure you take ever essential kitchen scissors to the bathroom, since you may need to cut yourself out of your clingfilm wrap!

- Anyone with good waterproofing construction/engineering skills should be well placed to advise!

- Alternatively think feathered layers (duck!) casting off water splashes!

 

2 - Kneel on the floor with head over bath and hand shower. Make sure you have spare hand towels at your side to mop up any water escapes heading towards your op side boob.

 

I actually found technique 1 most helpful, 3 op's over!

 

Re timing - I washed my hair just before any hospital dressing checks, knowing they would be checking the healing wound/scar and replacing the dressing.

 

So if you feel like trying something new, or have ever fancied it,  get clingfilming! 

 

haha! 

Seabreeze

xxx

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne glad you are almost back with us!! Lol!! To answer your question about the hair washing malarkey I too had a plastic jug which I used over the sink or knowing down over the bath. Definitely no better front than when your hair is washed!!!! I wish you a very speedy recovery and suggest you start the post op exercises as soon as you can...but take it gently at first. Best wishes to all on here this Easter 💗💗
Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne -

Your last message hasn't appeared on here yet!

I didn't wash my hair for ages because I ended up back in hospital with an infection so I just piled it on top of my head and pretended I looked glamorous. When I eventually got home I used a jugand washed it over the bath with help from my husband.

Enjoy your egg I only have a twirl bar!

Jak x

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

I guess there’s nothing like having an operation for Breast Cancer to convince yourself that you’re not a fraud for having Breast Cancer!!!

 

 You lot are fantastic! Your advice is totally first class and is still helping! Because you’ve all been through it, it has helped me to learn from your experiences.
I got out of hospital after two days, far longer than I thought I’d be in and I’m still spaced out! I’m not entirely in this world yet! So This has taken hours to write and might not make sense!
So glad you’ve been telling me about how the effects of the anaesthesia can take days to get out of the System. I think that, plus, the morphine, plus the ‘take home’ strong meds, have been making me feel like a zombie, but I’m really really glad to know that it’s normal to feel like this because I was beginning to feel ridiculous that I’m still so tired. (I guess it’s that lingering fraud-like feeling! )

Yes, boob and underarm are pretty sore, but at least the severe post op back pain has gone.


I bought the soft but supportive bras thanks to your advice before surgery and it’s a tremendous help, except for where it presses under my arm where the lymph nodes were. 

 

I’ll try the protein, and Jak60 the Easter eggs are here and ready to be devoured as soon as I’ve got my appetite back. 

 

Another question though, a funny one, and I’m sure this might help many others.....

How on earth do we wash our hair if we are not supposed to get the dressings wet? 😬

xxx

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

I guess there’s nothing like having an operation for Breast Cancer to convince yourself that you’re not a fraud for having Breast Cancer!


Wow! You lot are fantastic! Your advice is totally first class and is still helping! Because you’ve all been through it, it has helped me to learn from your experiences.


I got out of hospital after two days, far longer than I thought I’d be in and I’m still spaced out! I’m not entirely in this world yet! So This has taken hours to write and might not make sense!
So glad you’ve been telling me about how the effects of the anaesthesia can take days to get out of the System. I think that, plus, the morphine, plus the ‘take home’ strong meds, have been making me feel like a zombie, but I’m really really glad to know that it’s normal to feel like this because I was beginning to feel ridiculous that I’m still so tired. (I guess it’s that lingering fraud-like feeling! )

Yes, boob and underarm hurts extremely sore, but at least the severe post op back pain has gone.
I bought the soft but supportive bras thanks to your advice before surgery and it’s a tremendous help, except under my arm where it hurts more with.

 

Jak60, abd all of you, I have my chocolate Easter Egg ready and waiting for the appetite to start. I hope you all have e one to enjoy! 

 

Another question: 

How on earth did you wash your hair without soaking your wound pads?

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

 Remember chocolate Vonne! Hope you are being looked after. Take care xx Jak

Community Champion

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne

 

Blimey mrs you have been through it sorry to learn that you have had a bad reaction but great to hear that you are now the other side of it all and the pain has improved.  Judging by the time of your post you will probably be home and resting now, so make sure you take it easy as teh aneasthetic will be in your system for a good few days.

 

Sending lots of gentle hugs

 

Helena xxxx

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne,

 

Pleased to hear the op is over and sorry about the complication pain elsewhere. 

 

Take is easy when you get home, the first few days your body will be getting over the anesthetic, plus starting to heal. As Alibobs says make sure you take the pain relief regularly and try to make sure you eat protein regularly since it helps with the healing.

 

Consistently wearing a supportive bra will probably help re pain, since it stops everything moving around near the incision area. If you have swelling you might want to consider asking someone to get some bra extenders for you. 

 

I hope the other location of pain eases up.

 

Take care

Seabreeze X

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Glad the op is behind you but sorry to hear of the complications!! Hope your pain is not too severe. Keep taking the tablets!!! Have they confirmed what they actually did yet? Have a nice rest when you do get home and don't try to run before you can walk! Hope you have someone to run round after you a bit. Onwards and upwards from here. Keep in touch with us Vonne xx
Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi!
Was kept in hospital after the operation so am still here! I definitely no longer feel like a fraud!!! 😕
Had an awful side effect of the op and woke from it in severe pain in another part of my body, I was in recovery for 5 hours! As a result I had many doses of morphine throughout the day and evening, but the plus side was no breast pain after surgery! 🙂
I’ll get out this morning as I’ve now ‘only’ (🙄) got post op breast pain and will see what surgeon says about it all.
Thanks for the good wishes, this forum and all of you feel like a friend at these times. X
Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne,

Hope all is well today, look after yourself. I find chocolate works best!

x Jak

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Good luck today Vonne we are all rooting for You. I'm sure everything will be ok. Come back and chat when you are ready. Just one more tip take the pain relief regularly to keep on top of it even if you don't think you need them! Xx
Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Thanks Seabreeze! Great...I can drink when I waken up then...if I ever get to sleep! (Partially because of knowing I have to get up soon, but also because of pain from a preexisting injury!)  The joys! X

 

 

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne,

Well done! Just in case you log on epically early in the morning, water only up until 2 or 2.5 hours (I can't remember which) before surgery (then no fluids at all). No chewing gum either since it gets your stomach going!

 

They are pretty good at the reshaping for small/medium sized lumps.

 

Hope it goes well.  

 

Seabreeze XX

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Great! Thanks everyone! Well I’ve now got/done everything that you’ve all said, and emotionally I’m now prepared for anything or nothing! 

 

One last question! Does fasting...no food...for an operation mean nothing to drink as well? Stupid question to all of you I guess, but I never asked at the pre op last week. 

 

I need to be ready to leave around 5am so I’m off to bed early, not that I’ll be able to sleep anyway! 😂

 

Here’s to a lovely new misshapen boob! Wish me luck! 🤪

 

 

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne,

 

In addition to the things on Alibobs useful list, take any prescription medications (in their boxes) you may be taking and useful to have mobile (and charger just in case). Plus button up front, preferably cotton, nightshirt.  

 

Re questions for after the op. The nurses usually give you a sheet of paper stating what painkillers to use and when any follow up appointments are. They should tell but (but just in case they don't) ask when and who will remove/check the dressings and if they needed to install drains (and if they say yes, ask about when they will be removed and anything you need to do etc).  

 

Re feeling or not feeling emotional about bc - we are all different and have different ways of handling things. It may be that after the op your subconscious acknowledges what's going on and that you start feeling slightly different. If it doesn't, don't worry. Whatever helps you through, superwoman or otherwise!   

 

Most breast cancer centres offer a counselling service, specifically for cancer patients. It may be that further down the line you might want to consider this. Just letting you know, in case you didn't already. 

 

I hope the operation goes as well as possible.

 

Seabreeze XX

Community Champion

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Vonne,

I also felt calm & unworried about surgery & almost ‘enjoyed’ the day itself, as I was so relieved it was going ahead & I was getting rid of the little b***er!  I had a WLE & was in & out the same day, so not major surgery. 

Don’t worry about how you’re feeling, just go with it, you may have a tearful day, but that’s fine too. I got tearful on the nurse for my pre-op check, she just said not to worry & they’re used to people feeling anxious & upset.

It can hit a bit after treatment is completed, sort of a ‘now what?’ feeling, so don’t worry if this happens, it’s common to most of us.

Anyway, you’re getting rid of the little blighter tomorrow, so onwards & upwards!

ann x

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Good morning Vonne. I hope you are feeling ok today. What sort of surgery ate you having? I had wire localisation and a sentinel node dye injection followed by a WLE to remove a 10mm tumour and 2 sentinel nodes. I went in as a day patient and was discharged that as me evening. As a minimum I would say wear something comfortable and easy to put back on after your op to go home in. In case you have to stay in take dressing gown, slippers wet wipes, hairbrush, toothbrush etc. Don't forget your glasses if you wear them. I would add by the time my op came aroind I could not wait for them to knock me out and get rid of the damn thing!! I hope everything goes well for you and you have the best possible outcome. Please come back if you need to know anything else and you must let us know how you are because we really are all in this together xx
Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

I need advice! You’ve all been so good here so I’m hoping you can help! My surgery is now tomorrow...Wednesday...28th!....and I’m back big style to feeling like I’m wasting peoples time. However it’s even more than that now, you see my family are al worried about the impending surgery and treatment but all I feel about it is that it’s a hassle. I am not nervous. I am not worried. I do not even think about it. I’m so fed up with fuss that I feel I could walk out and never come back!!! Everyone is now telling me that I’m being too positive and that I’m in denial. Problem is that I know I should be feeling something, anything, but I’m feeling nothing at all about this and just view it all as an irrelevance in my life.  

 

As a result of not thinking about any of this stuff I’ve no idea if there are any questions I should be asking when I go to the hospital.

Is there something I should be asking about the surgery, or treatment or anything at all??? What questions did you have that I should perhaps be asking? 

  Also, apart from taking a dressing gown and slippers as I was told, what else should I take with me? Consultant told me to be prepared to stay overnight. 

 

I have turned into this over abnormally assertive female ! Because I am so emotionally strong and positive about this I’m bizarrly worried that I might eventually  become emotional infront of people, or break down, and then they think I’m being negative! 

 

Help! Is not caring about all of this ‘normal?’  I can’t understand what there is to be emotional about!

 

What questions should I be asking, if any?! 

 

 

Community Champion

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne

 

Oh I know what you mean, you want to turn round to them and say would you feel that way if it was you!!  I had the situation last week when I rang as I had not heard anything about my first mammo post surgery, oh she said dont worry it will be coming out in the next week or so, I wonder if she would feel the same if it was her, obviously I didnt say that to her, but so wanted to!!

 

I had my op three weeks after diagnosis, it does seem like an eternity because all you want to get it over with, but it will soon be here and you can start to move on from that.

 

Ha ha, love the philosophical side of you - it is true, one thing my experience with bc is it puts everything into perspective, what used to stress/worry me no longer does.

 

Helena xx

 

 

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hi Lady Bowler,


Yes, positivity is good and generally I’m feeling much better about all of this...except briefly if people who find out start being dismissive! Haven’t we all had responses similar to, “ Half the population gets cancer nowadays it’s no big deal now, flu is worse!”...and then he/she goes all dismissive and philosophical! (Yes, this was said yesterday to me by a lady who does annual fund raisers for Cancer!). You’ve got to laugh (Hmmmmmm😠)!!!!! (That response really is enough to make you feel both angry and fraud-like at the same time!)

 

I obviously can’t say I’m looking forward to the operation etc., time is now dragging on before it!

 

Now I’m beginning to wonder about how much time can pass before the op, until further tests are needed to see if it’s spread further?! Mind is now in overdrive!

Oh well, 9 days to go and I’m timetabling every minute as a distraction.

 

Life is great...just because we are all alive! We should never take this gift of life for granted! Endurance is a learned feat! (Now Its me who’s going all philosophical! 🙃)

 

 Much love to you and all of you! X

 

 

 

Community Champion

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne

 

Wow what a positive and insightful post, well done you.  YES YES YES cancer does not define who we are.  I remember thinking when i was first diagnosed, "why me haven't I had enough crap in my life" and there has been quite a bit of it, but I thought well why not me, I am still the woman I was before I was diagnosed only with a lump, who I called Mr Blobby, that needed to be get gone. Thanks to my wonderful breast care team that was done. 

 

It is something that a lot of us feel and try to understand, the lack of any symptoms, I did not have a lump so had nothing to be concerned about when I went for my routine mammogram.  I didnt feel unwell, in fact felt better than I had for a long time.  I remember thinking afterwards that I felt a bit of a fraud because of this, and it was my boss who put me straight on that one, she is very good at doing that, I dont know how I got through those early weeks without her as I had not found this forum at that time.

 

One thing we are not doing is "putting up" with you my darling, you have come on here for support which you will get bucket loads of on your journey and you are definitely not alone with us lot beside you.

 

Sending you hugs

 

Helena xxx

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Gosh, sorry for the major wobble!

 

I’m doing well, and spent last night actively reading more about BC and trying to wake this normally positive brain out of being so negative and emotional! I needed to remind myself of who I really am! Cancer (there, I’ve said the word, I’ve not done that up to now!) does not define who I am , so although this whole situation is still unreal it’s just another of life’s challenges! Isn’t it?! I really need to not bother about peoples judgement of what I’m going through, nor feel the need to comfort those who are not even close to me, nor feel unworthy of asking for help, and also need to stop blocking it and denying there’s a problem!
Ha Ha! That’s a lot of needs!!!!!!!!

 

Those feelings of being like a fraud stemmed out of the suddenness of it all, the lack of any symptoms, and my husband telling people it was just “a small bit of cancer”! Then of course, peoples reactions! In retrospect I just wish I’d had time to start to process it all before he started to tell everyone, I’m a private person! I’ve always dismissed things being wrong in my life and carried on, but this all threw me! I also know the nurse did not mean any harm, she’s a bit more abrupt in her manner than the first BC nurse I had, but I guess she sees so many people.

 

We are all in the same boat here with so many mixed emotions and reactions from those around us. I’m grateful to you all for putting up with me and helping me to understand that others apart from me have had similar feelings and that I’m not alone in this journey. 

 

You are all wonderful women! Thanks! 

 

 

Community Champion

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Vonne

 

Oh I am so sorry to hear about your friend, however I do have to say I have a colleague at work who was diagnosed stage 4 and that was 7 years ago, she is still enjoying life and working full time.

 

I dont know if this will be any comfort to you, when I was diagnosed, my surgery was planned for three weeks after my diagnosis which I think is pretty much the same as you, that was 18 months ago.

 

I think it was a bit insensitve for her to say that in the way she did because I am sure it was supposed to be reassuring but obviously it has come across totall wrong. 

 

This is the hardest time mate, once you get your op over and you know that the little blighter has been removed you will feel so much better.  You would not be normal if you were not at least a little bit scared, that is totally natural.

 

Sending you loads of hugs xxxx

Community Champion

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Sorry to hear about your friend Vonne - that must be a real hammer blow coming on top of your own recent diagnosis. And being grateful that yours is at an early stage does not mean it is any less important. Keep re-reading the earlier posts.

 

Yeah, it's hard when it seems like people aren't taking it seriously and you are already feeling "like a fraud" and to be told you're not a priority seems out of order for a BC nurse to say. I wonder though if she might have been trying to be reassuring, as in "because yours is at an early stage we aren't rushing to do the op immediately? Or am I giving her the benefit of the doubt! Smiley Happy

 

You are going to have surgery so of course you are apprehensive, and your emotions will be all over the place so you will be more sensitive to what people say. Put it down to them being insensitve or just plain clueless about what having a cancer diagnosis means to someone - it is more to do with their own lack of knowledge than about you I think. I know that before my own diagnosis I didn't really know what to say to people who had had a cancer diagnosis - colleagues, neighbours, - and probably erred on the side of avoiding them if truth be told. I'll will be a much more useful friend now I understand better. Good luck for the op.xx

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Thanks for all your advice, I’m reading and rereading what you’ve all been saying for the uplift and reassurance. I’ve been away for the past few days and received news that an acquaintance has stage 4, she’s obviously very ill. I know that many BC sufferers have it tougher than someone like myself who was caught early, so I’m grateful it’s not worse!
The operation is the 28th March and the BC nurse told me that I’m not a priority. I know I’m not a priority, but being told that contributes towards the feelings of irrelevance that I’ve felt! I’m tired of it all! Sorry to sound negative, I’m not usually a negative person! I guess I’m tired of the various attitudes of people and of my own attitude, and I’m also a little scared! Right now I’m trying to put it all out of my mind, I can’t handle it!

Member

Re: Feeling like a fraud!

Hiya, my diagnosis was very similar and in a strange way I feel lucky that it was found early. Most breast cancers are picked up via the screening process or so I believe.  I have learnt so much about BC and all the different types there are, I had no idea. I had my op in January and am now 11 sessions into my radiotherapy, 4 more to go! Two months into hormone treatment and I am getting on fine with both. People are strange sometimes when they are not or have not been in this situation. Good luck and there is lots of support on here!