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Anxious and paranoid

JoanieP's picture
JoanieP
Posts: 573
Joined: Mar 2010

I had follicular NHL 3a and was dx in 2009. I was cancer free June 2009 and Sept 2009. I have had 2 rounds of Rituxin and another tomorrow. I have the longest list of questions for the Dr. tomorrow. I hate that I am an anxious and paranoid person now. I am a Christian and am so thankful for all the blessings I have and that this is treatable. I do not want to always think that every little sweat, pain itch is lymphoma coming back. I pray for this to be removed so I can focus just on others. Does it ever get better? I love this group of people. I can say things here that only my poor husband listens too.

bluerose's picture
bluerose
Posts: 1104
Joined: Jul 2009

You have ever right to be anxious right now and you aren't paranoid, we all wonder at new symptoms. You mentioned that you can say things freely on this site and you certainly can - we all understand as we have been there personally - and I am sure your husband does not mind at all when you pass your thoughts and feelings by him, I'm sure you would do the same for him if the rolls were reversed.

Time has a way of making things better in many ways but cancer does change your life to some degree and sometimes that is not always a bad thing.

Try and take things a day at a time and glad to hear that you have your list of questions for the docs, that will give you a sense of peace when you get some of them answered - right now it's all just one big question mark Im sure.

Do let us know how the appt went. Blessings, Bluerose

JoanieP's picture
JoanieP
Posts: 573
Joined: Mar 2010

Thanks Bluerose. I really appreciate your words. I feel quilty as I got this at 60 and I see people on here so much younger. My husband is a jewel. I hate to be a complainer . No one at school knows my feelings as I don't want people's pity. Bless you for taking the time to tell me to take it day by day. I have to stop projecting.

bluerose's picture
bluerose
Posts: 1104
Joined: Jul 2009

Hi Joanie, First let me say there is no need to thank me for anything, all survivors seem to have this same 'giving back' sort of way of dealing with others and that's a good thing, everyone on these sites does it in their own way. No one can really go through something as horrendous as cancer and then keep all learned to themselves, you do the same thing for others without probably even realizing it - help them through various stages but just reading of your journey with cancer.

I was re-reading your first post and then the second and do you realize that you really do seem to be very hard on yourself? I am glad you saw the doctor and went over a few things with him but one line stood out in your post, and that was in the first one you wrote. You said something about wanting to get on with things so that you could focus only on others and of course it's wonderful to help others but it truly sounded as if you spend little time taking care of yourself. If you don't care and nurture yourself first then what good are you going to be to others? Right? Right.

Every now and again I check in with a trauma counsellor for all I have gone through with many issues, most involving cancer, and that was one of the most valuable things I learned from the counsellor. She said that sometimes people facing difficulties often spend so much time taking care of others that they forget to nurture themselves as well and for me that statement was a really huge wakeup call. I hear that nurturing tone in her voice towards me as her patient and welcome and enjoy it and heal with her words but why don't I do that to myself? It was quite the revelation and I realized from talking to other survivors that many don't do that either. I share this with you know because I saw several times in your posts when you were putting yourself down and almost scolding yourself when it is perfectly normal to have the feelings you do about your cancer and treatments and family issues but you came on to yourself in much too harsh a way, or so it seemed to me.

Give yourself some credit and space to recover emotionally from the blow of cancer and it's many implications to your life. Cancer changes alot in people's lives both the good and the not so good but in the process try to handle yourself in a nurturing way if you possibly can. A good counsellor can really help you with that I am sure people on this board can continue to help as well.

Take care and hope things get easier as you go. Blessings, Bluerose

JoanieP's picture
JoanieP
Posts: 573
Joined: Mar 2010

Hi Bluerose, I went to the Dr on Wed and my blood test and physical exam were very good. I had rituxin and he put me on effexor(antidepressant) for a while. I told him I was hating how much time I dwell on my condition. I usually feel pretty upbeat but I was really in a rut. He felt my symptomes were not the lymphoma returning at all. Anyway thank you for your kind words and concern Blessings to you Joanie

dixiegirl's picture
dixiegirl
Posts: 1043
Joined: Apr 2006

You are very rightfully concerned. This is not something we can afford to ignore anymore. Our bodies are no longer just "ours". All of our functions are carefully watched over and it's amazing to me how my modesty has flown out the window LOL. I've gotten used to the fear to a small degree with time. I know my body. I pay attention to my body. I don't write things off anymore. I ask questions. I speak up when something scares me. I do the research then talk to my onc to see if what I am reading is true or crap. All of this usually comes AFTER I corral the fear a little :) as I cannot possibly do the right thing all the time.

I am listening to me a little more and it's working for me. I have found both relapses after I figured out what feeling good really felt like! Although this last time I did not see the spread to three other areas, but I did acknowledge I wasn't feeling good, losing weight and ONE nightsweat was enough for me. We did the PET and here I am again. It's ok to be angry, scared and tired.

The effexor is great! I refuse to go without it. Do you know they've actually done a study and found it reduces hot flashes by 60%? Chemo put me in menopause at 42 and flashing is crazy without it. My onc put me on it because I think he got tired of hearing me gripe about how hot his office was LOL. It helps me tremendously and does help with the anxiety of cancer. I also take xanax when I need it which he also prescribes for me. I'm not ashamed that I need help. It's ok.

Take care, and know what you are feeling is very normal. Rest when you need it, and take a step at a time. Don't worry! It's not worth the effort.

Beth

JoanieP's picture
JoanieP
Posts: 573
Joined: Mar 2010

Effexor stopped my warm flashes too. I am too old for it to be menopause. Take care of yourself. I find going to the gym gives me more energy. Take care and God Bless you

bluerose's picture
bluerose
Posts: 1104
Joined: Jul 2009

Glad to hear your doctor is working with you on your anxiety, see how the antidepressants go but know that alot of what you are saying is normal too but you are wise to check if you have slid into a depressed state cause that is fixable as you are no doubt finding out.

I doubt you dwell on your condition, I'm sure it's just the normal worry of a pretty new condition for you - it wasn't that long ago when you were first diagnosed remember. It takes a long time to get used to what some call 'the new normal' although I personally don't like that phrase. No doubt you have little pangs here and there in your body that weren't there before and are probably symptomatic when you take the meds and drugs and each pang and treatment results in symptoms that remind you constantly about what is going on. Waiting for results causes huge anxiety in most patients as do the treatments themselves.

I would really consider looking to a good psychologist who deals with anxiety and trauma, I go to one every now and again and check in, heck we go to a doctor when our bodies aren't well and the mind is a part of the body - think about it.
I think he/she could really help you with learning to maybe nurture yourself a little more as you seem to have no problem doing that to others but very often we as women neglect nurturing ourselves - even talking to ourselves and giving ourselves permission for being frightened, worried and scared. I have just learned this technique and it works wonders. I don't remember if I talked to you about abdominal breathing for anxiety if you are feeling anxious at times, not sure if you said you were or not, surprising how a simple thing like deep breathing can calm a person right down and reduce blood pressure too by the way.

Anywho glad to hear that you are running these things by your doctor and not just ignoring it all, it's a good sign you are already nurturing yourself to some extent, good job.

Take care and do keep us updated on how you are doing. Blessings, Bluerose

JoanieP's picture
JoanieP
Posts: 573
Joined: Mar 2010

I have really been feeling great. I am going to the gym 4 times a week . School will be out in 20 1/2 days (not that I am counting). Since I teach 5th grade they are so hormonal this time of year. Thanks for all the kind words and good advice. The cancer support group I started in my church has been wonderful for all of us in the group. We share so much with each other. Strangely enough my counselor I had when my daughter got divorced is now my friend. We share with each other. She now tells me about her life also. I hope you all have a wonderful Mother's Day. Our children (36 and 38 are planning a get together. Thank you again and may God bless you both.

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