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POST-TREATMENT AND NERVOUS

Jennynmgl
Posts: 1
Joined: Jul 2003

I was diagnosed with stage4A Hodgkins last September when I was three months pregnant. I went through six months of ABVD chemo for the remainder of my pregnancy and finally had a beautiful bouncing baby girl in February. I had six weeks off and finished with two more months of treatment and finally finished in May. My CAT and PET scans were all clear right after baby was born. They were all clear mid-June. I am thrilled, but a fear of it returning is consuming me. I am overly concerned about any pain or feeling I feel and I hate to call my doctor for everything. I want to live everyday enjoying my family and life. I keep busy, I have four children now and they are the joy of my life. I have a supportive husband. Does it get easier with every negative scan? or is it always going to be like this? Any suggestions out there??

dpomroy's picture
dpomroy
Posts: 137
Joined: Dec 2000

Wow, cut yourself some slack for being human! You have been through a lot and not so very long ago. Yes, I think it gets easier with the more time between you and the cancer...you begin to believe it more and more that you are OK. But even so, you will probably always get at least a little bit nervous for every checkup scan. Who wouldn't? It's no fun to be poked and scanned, and you know better than anyone that you don't want to ever go through those treatments again. But I try to look at those appointments from a different perpective these days (I say TRY because I'm guilty of getting nervous sometimes about them too - but I calm myself with this) and that is that if there is something to detect we will catch it early and I will have all the options out there in front of me. They are coming up with new stuff all the time that is more humane and better treatment. I did it once, and I could do it again if I HAVE to. There are worse things than staying on top of and taking good care of your health, right?

AlloMan
Posts: 47
Joined: Jul 2003

Dear Jenny,

I think the Alcoholics Anonymous prayer is something like: Lord, give me the power to change what I can, and the wisdom to see things that I cannot. I've been dealing with HD since 12/00. As time goes on, and you busy yourself with daily life, it will get better. Every good scan gives you more confidence. Maybe dealing with cancer is like being the victim of a crime, it's always in the back of your head, you just need to find a way to manage to keep it from the front of your head. Try to put that energy into making your life, and the lives of others, better. Change this negative energy into positive energy. Worst case scenario? You'll die of cancer. What might be almost as bad, is that you spent your non-treatment time on Earth stressing about cancer and didn't live life to its fullest. Dying of cancer is bad enough, dying with regrets would be really bad. Because of what you've been through, you probably appreciate life more than others, because you know how fragile it can be. Good Lord, I'm starting to sound like Oprah....I guess the best I can write is try to learn from this terrible experience, but don't focus on it. You may be able to find a group at your local hosptial where cancer survivors can meet and talk. Personally, I got professional help dealing with these issues, first with a psychiatrist then a social worker (his first wife died of cancer). I assume you're having follow up visits with your oncologist. Don't be shy about talking about your symptoms, and if he/she knows what he/she is doing, they'll be handled appropriately. Good luck.

pittsburghpete
Posts: 10
Joined: Jun 2003

Hi Jenny,
I went through very similar emotions after I finished treatment. Every time I thought I had a fever, or felt scar tissue in my neck from the surgery to remove the node that I thought might be another malignant node. I was scared every time I went to the doctor. I worried about how long I would survive.

Did I mention that I had Hodgkins in 1969 and have been fine for three decades? The worry fades. Encourage it to fade faster if you can.

tjcavy
Posts: 3
Joined: Jul 2003

I have had hodgkins twice.It has been almost ten years since my last treatment..You can beat it twice I promise.I still worry about it a little.I had a problem for about two years after the second time.I went to a psychiatrst.He helped a ton.He also put me on a antidepressant called luvox.It has changed my life.

tarainla
Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 2003

It gets easier. it will take several years. i still feel tired adn have weird pains around the time I am due for a check up. I've been clear for 14 years, the anxiety decreases but will always be there. What a miracle to have a baby through all that!!

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