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Feeling a little silly...

Cecile Louise's picture
Cecile Louise
Posts: 135
Joined: Dec 2009

Hello all! I haven't posted in awhile, but have been keeping up with you all via this board. Welcome to all the newbies...glad you've found us.
I need to vent/rant a bit as I've been feeling a bit down for some reason. I feel like I should be ecstatic as I'm celebrating 2 years NED in a couple of weeks...but I'm not. I've started on Abilify to help with the depression, but I feel awful that I need something to make me feel happy...I should be jumping up and down that I continue to be NED. Sometimes I feel as if I will never be "normal" again (ha...normal is a relative term in my case); that every new pain or cough or headache might be cancer...it's driving me crazy. Then there are these weirdo cramps I'm having...as some of you may remember, I'm having menstrual-type cramps all day every day, and still trying to track down the cause, and so far, so good, I guess...my oncologist and urologist can't find any reason for them - next stop, Gastroenterologist. I apologize for rambling on & on...having read this over, I'm not sure it makes sense even to myself! Anyhow, thanks to every one of you for being here for me.
Hugs to you all!
Cecile

Zupo's picture
Zupo
Posts: 7
Joined: Jan 2010

Hi, im Mary and im new to this. I hope everything goes well at the gastro doctor for you. I do have one question. what is NED a reference to?

Cecile Louise's picture
Cecile Louise
Posts: 135
Joined: Dec 2009

it means "No Evidence of Disease"

And welcome, Mary! Glad you found us...there are so many wonderful and knowledgeable people here!
Thanks for your well wishes.

Hugs,
Cecile

MoeKay
Posts: 63
Joined: Feb 2004

Hi Cecile:

I can say from my own experience and what other cancer survivors have told me that your feelings are very common. I spent a lot of time especially during the first two or three years after finishing treatment worrying about whether certain aches and pains or other symptoms were an indication of a recurrence. I think a cancer diagnosis causes a loss of innocence that is never totally regained, but we cancer survivors also have the benefits of a cancer diagnosis too. We learn to truly appreciate the value and beauty of an uneventful or "ordinary" day, the way someone who hasn't been told they have cancer or some other life-threatening disease never can.

I also think it doesn't help that when we have encounters with the medical system after a cancer diagnosis that we are looked at differently, and never quite get out from under that "history of cancer" umbrella. In late summer 2009, I went to the emergency room with a bad cough, and ended up being told I had cancer metastatic to my lung (based on preliminary CT results that only said "suspicion of metastatic cancer"). They also treated me with antibiotics for bacterial pneumonia. I later learned that I didn't have bacterial pneumonia at all, and after I was treated with steroids for my allergy-based pneumonia, my lungs completely cleared. So it looks like they were batting zero for two. The "suspicion of metastatic cancer" language never even made it into the final CT report done the following morning. However, by then I had been discharged from the ER and only saw the final report when I went to pick up a copy of the record a couple of days later to take to an appointment with a pulmonologist.

I can say, Cecile, that these feelings do lessen considerably as time goes on. I am coming up on eleven years since my diagnosis in April, and no longer do I assume that every little twinge is a recurrence of my uterine cancer. In fact, they wanted to admit me as an in-patient from the ER during the above escapade, but I declined and instead had them fax the CT report to my gynecologic oncologist who I still see twice a year.

Hang in there and good luck with finding out the reason for your current symptoms.

MoeKay

california_artist's picture
california_artist
Posts: 860
Joined: Jan 2009

on this board, that does not even begin to qualify as rambling.

love ya,

Claudia

i know what you mean about the depression though. I can't seem to find my smile either.

bonniesue
Posts: 126
Joined: Apr 2009

My mom's surgeon says tincture of time helps reduce the anxiety but I think dealing with cancer is always stressfull (uterine which does not have lots of symptoms before diagnosis). I wish you well-good luck with gastroenterologist and think it is wise to listen to our body and check symptoms out for reassurance and with surgery/rad txs your body may have aches and pains that you do not have presurgery but always wise to check. I am going to order Cancer Schmancer hooded sweatshirts from Fran Dreschar's website tomorrow. Dr. Weil's breath CD helps with anxiety and meditation with Anne Marie Chaisson And Dr. Weil cd available from Barnes Noble helps. Take care. Prayers and healing, calm thoughts sent to all.

deanna14
Posts: 738
Joined: Oct 2008

I have had the same feelings, but am slowly learning to live with my "new normal." I find myself feeling angry about having had cancer. I take Paxil and I find much comfort and strength from my faith in God and prayer. I have come to the realization that my worrying doesn't change anything and only serves to make me feel worse. Don't get me wrong, I still worry at times and frequently have to remind myself that I am not in control of this.
I too have some cramping, but have determined that it is intestinal. If I allow myself to become that least bit constipated, I have the cramping. My diagnosis was in September 2008 and am NED by CT in November.
I think all of the feelings you have are understandable considering what you have been through. Allow yourself to feel... your emotions are one of the few things you can call your own and no one can take from you. Allow yourself to feel them and then try to move on and let yourself find some joy in every day!
Good luck.
Love and hugs!

Northwoodsgirl
Posts: 201
Joined: Oct 2009

Cecile, I am only one month NED. I am praying for that to continue. As women who have been through the trenchs in our battle with cancer I think it is totally understandable that we have days or even weeks where we are feeling depressed, anxious, blue or a little bit off. My gosh, you are having symptoms which aren't normal for you. That alone can bring the flood of fear back again.
I am going to see a colon-rectal surgeon tomorrow just to have a baseline and relationship as there can be a link between uterine cancer and colon cancer. My doctor told me that I shouldn't see a gastroenterologist but rather a colon rectal surgeon who is more likely to have experience with cancer patients. I thought that I would just have to see the GI guy who did my colonoscopy when I turned 50 yrs. I sure hope you get your "groove" back soon! Take care! Lori

Cecile Louise's picture
Cecile Louise
Posts: 135
Joined: Dec 2009

Thank you all so much for your words of comfort. You are right, I must stop beating myself up for having feelings - feeling that are really quite normal in the situation we find ourselves in. I have started feeling better - in part because of all of you, my new friends - and I know that even if I do have my "blue" days, there will be bright days as well, right around the corner.

Hugs,
Cecile

Songflower's picture
Songflower
Posts: 632
Joined: Apr 2009

It takes along time to feel normal again. We all worry if we have aches and pains, "is that cancer?" One oncologist told me that if a pain lasts longer than two weeks that is significant. I grew up in Minnesota and post treatment is like walking on the newly frozen lake water; you wonder if you will fall in at anytime. You listen for cracks and put your foot out slowly.

A young breast cancer woman told me this once, when I get down and out I go out and do something I have never ever done before. I thought that was a fabulous idea and adopted it myself. Just try it.

If there is one thing I have learned after breast cancer is that you have alot of aches and pains that are not cancer. Try the two week rule. Let us know what you tried that you've never done before. I took sailing lessons. Planted pyracantha. Hiked in Alaska. Or it could be something simple like an outfit different from what you ususally wear; a new shade of lipstick.

Diane

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