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loss of mother/best friend

dinakate
Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2004

I am new to this site but I lost my mother in Dec. of 2003. She was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in August of that same year. I am afraid because I am a smoker like she was, only I have the chance to quit. She never did. I even promised her that I would quit, Can someone help me!

Plymouthean's picture
Plymouthean
Posts: 264
Joined: Jan 2004

Like you, I lost my mother to lung cancer. That was 26 years ago. Her loss didn't wake me up to the problems brought on by smoking. I smoked at least 2 packs of non-filters a day for about twenty years, at that point.
Fast forward to May, 2001. That's when I was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer.
There's no terror in the world like the terror that one feels when they tell you that you have cancer. And, usually, when you get the diagnosis, it's too late.
I was one of the lucky ones. I went through chemo and radiation, and then surgery, which removed 40% of my right lung. The medical team administered "aggressive" treatment, which meant that they would either cure me or kill me in the attempt. (my terminology, not theirs)It's now 2 1/2 years since surgery, and, so far, so good. The medical team refers to me as their "miracle".
I'm guessing that you are younger than my 69 years. Even at 67, when I was diagnosed, I felt that this was the end of my life. I had expected to live longer.
You must heed the experience and quit smoking RIGHT NOW! No one knows, positively, that smoking will cause cancer. But why risk it? The statistics are there. Don't argue and rationalize. Just do it!
It's not easy to quit. I could start smoking again right now, but I'm terrified that the cancer will come back and kill me this time. You have risk factors, and you can't afford to ignore them. The ones I know about are: you have a history of cancer in your family, and you are a smoker. You may have more risk factors. Do some research and find out what the risk factors are, then research your health history, as well as your family history. You may turn up other factors.
You saw your mother go through it. Believe me, - you don't want to go through it, even if you survive. You're never quite the same after cancer treatment.
Dedicate your effort to stop smoking to your mother's memory. You can do it. I did, and I'm not a particularly strong person.
I'm always available here, as are many people. We are here to help. Take advantage of that.

Keep us posted.

onlysister
Posts: 3
Joined: Mar 2004

HI dinakate - my brother was just diagnosed. I still smoke and everytime I just feel awful about myself. Bad enough for me is that I work in a hospital. I'm so sorry for your loss. How you are doing?

Christinesan
Posts: 3
Joined: Mar 2004

Hi Dinakate! You should try the patch, it really worked for me thought my motivation was high because I had just been diagnosed with lung cancer stage 3B, 15% chance of survival. I'm pretty young, so I was shocked. Chemo and radiation were real "fun," the kind you NEVER want to experience, followed by surgery during which I nearly bled to death. There's always one cigarette that's the hardest to let go of. For me, it was the one after coffee in the morning. So, I quit drinking coffee too! For that one cig, you need pure will power to stop. I've been sick for more than a year, can't leave the house, can't drive, basically can't do anything without help. My privacy is all but gone too. Previously, I was a top level executive. Now, if I can manage to take a shower every day, it's a real achievement. On top of everything else, I've torn my rotator cuff which is really painful. Any cancer patient will tell you, it's not only the treatment, but all the little sideshows that break out too that drain the life out of you, literally. And then there's the loss of friends who simply can't deal with your illness. For many, it is those you had considered your best friends. And then there's the needles, hundreds of needles, everything involves a damn needle! Also, I warn you in the strongest possible terms that if your life is very stressful, you eat processed foods and you smoke, you are at great risk. Please quit, you never want to go through what I and so many others have. Good luck, hope this helps.

P.S.: The bathroom issues are huge too, but I won't go there, just take my word for it!

Laura31274
Posts: 1
Joined: Apr 2004

Hello. I also lost my mother/best friend to lung cancer on December 18, 2001. She was diagnosed in late October and died two months later. It was very unexpected, as the doctor said that the cancer was clearing up. She was battling bronchitis at the time, which I am sure did not help her situation.

I try no to think about her and her death as it too painful to think about even two and a half years later. I know that is not the way to deal with the situation, but I need to do that at this point.

She continued to smoke, even after being diagnosed (she smoked for over 40 years). Her mother, father, and husband (my father)all died from smoking. My entire family continues to smoke even after her death. I am the only one who has never smoked.

I wish people would never start smoking....

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