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jenjerandkatesmom
jenjerandkatesmom Member Posts: 37
edited March 2014 in Colorectal Cancer #1
I was diagnosed in 8/06 with stage 3 rectal cancer. Went through 15 mos. of chemo, radiation and surgery. Had a great support system (family and friends), but did not know about this network. Just had 2 nodules removed from my lung a few days ago and they were found to be rectal cancer. Finding it hard now to talk about this with my family and friends. We're all so discouraged and no one seems to know what to say. I'm not even sure what my feelings are. Definitely not ready to throw in the towel. I guess I need a few words of encouragement from some fighters out there that have been through this before.

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  • rrob
    rrob Member Posts: 158
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    Sorry
    I'm so sorry to hear you have another battle ahead, but you can fight and you can win! I was dx'd with stage iv colon cancer in October '07, and right before my dx, someone I knew (friend of a friend)had a recurrance of her colon cancer with a node in her lung. She had surgery, six months of chemo, and she is now NED. Stay strong--there are lots of survivors here who can share their stories of hope. Good luck and let us know how you are doing!

    Rebecca
  • kimby
    kimby Member Posts: 797
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    Welcome
    Glad you found us - sorry you need us. I consider my recurrance a DARE! My family/friends are having a harder time with it. My original dx was 8/07 stage III, mets to liver/lung 8/08. I think it's easier for me than family for a couple of reasons. I have fun ALWAYS, cancer or not. Life is short and I'm here to enjoy it. Also, because I'm the patient I have something to DO to fight it. They are watching and worrying. They perceive my suffering as much greater than it truely is.

    I come here to vent and rejoice. Laugh and cry. I hope you find this group as wonderful and helpful as I do.

    Kimby
  • CherylHutch
    CherylHutch Member Posts: 1,375 Member
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    Hang in there!
    I can soooo relate to your feeling down in the dumps when you heard that the nodules in your lung turned out to be rectal cancer. You get that panicky feeling in your chest/stomach that you know is fear/terror. Just WHEN is this going to stop??

    Throw in the fact you have JUST had surgery, which can play around with your emotions without the news of the nodules being cancer... so is it any wonder you are feeling disappointed, scared, and not knowing what to think?

    I was diagnosed with Colon Cancer, Stage 3 in Dec/06. I went through the surgery, 8 months of chemo, 6 weeks of daily radiation and actually did very well through all of it (I'm a fighter, just like everyone here is!). But, let's not fool ourselves... going through the treatment IS rough in that you are tired, maybe feeling ill and maybe having side affects like the ones the Oxy gives. But we fight on because we know that for all the nastiness of the treatment, it is doing what it is suppose to do... it is killing off everything in sight, including the good cells (lucky for us, the good ones regenerate, the cancer ones die off).

    After going through all of this which ended in Oct/07, 2 months later they found a large growth on my adrenal gland (which we knew about... it had been there for 7+ years) that was now lighting up on the PET scan... plus a nodule in my right lung. So, I have now had the adrenal gland removed and we are now working on the strategy for the lung. Except there are now 4 more tiny nodules on the lung... 3 on the right, 1 on the left.

    When I found this out this week, I went through the same emotions and fears as when you are first diagnosed. Here we go again! Of course I'm going to fight this... I have another PET scan scheduled for Oct 1 and then, it looks like I'll be starting chemo again.

    Is it worth it?? Darn tootin' well it's worth it!! We will fight and fight and never give up because there's always the chance it just takes one more round of treatment and that will kill it off and we will be NED. And if it takes longer, at least with the treatments, we can keep it under control.

    So, accept that being discouraged is totally normal and actually very healthy. If you didn't feel anything one way or the other, then how could you muster up the strength to carry on?? Know that you are not the only one who feels discouraged when you find out there's more... we all go through that, but then we must pick ourselves up and fight on! If the fear/panic doesn't go away, then go to your doctor, explain to him/her that the fear is impacting your life and don't feel bad about getting a prescription for an anti-anxiety or anti-depressant med. There is nothing worse than having your life come to a halt because you can't function because of fear.

    Hang in there... and keep talking! This group is fabulous for listening and giving hope.

    Huggggs,

    Cheryl
  • msccolon
    msccolon Member Posts: 1,917 Member
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    kimby said:

    Welcome
    Glad you found us - sorry you need us. I consider my recurrance a DARE! My family/friends are having a harder time with it. My original dx was 8/07 stage III, mets to liver/lung 8/08. I think it's easier for me than family for a couple of reasons. I have fun ALWAYS, cancer or not. Life is short and I'm here to enjoy it. Also, because I'm the patient I have something to DO to fight it. They are watching and worrying. They perceive my suffering as much greater than it truely is.

    I come here to vent and rejoice. Laugh and cry. I hope you find this group as wonderful and helpful as I do.

    Kimby

    Kimby, thanks for that! A good way to look at it, and I am going to use it from now on! I never thought of it directly as a dare, although I always fight it and expect to win! Have a good day!
    mary
  • kimby
    kimby Member Posts: 797
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    msccolon said:

    Kimby, thanks for that! A good way to look at it, and I am going to use it from now on! I never thought of it directly as a dare, although I always fight it and expect to win! Have a good day!
    mary

    Ha!
    I told you I'm the crazy cancer lady! cancer doesn't scare me nearly as much as scrubing a dirty toilet! LOL
  • jenjerandkatesmom
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    new to network
    Thanks to all of you for your words of encouragement. It means sooo much to me to know that I am not alone with this. Kimby...thanks...scrubbing a dirty toilet is scarier to me, too!
  • pamness
    pamness Member Posts: 524 Member
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    Hang in there!
    I can soooo relate to your feeling down in the dumps when you heard that the nodules in your lung turned out to be rectal cancer. You get that panicky feeling in your chest/stomach that you know is fear/terror. Just WHEN is this going to stop??

    Throw in the fact you have JUST had surgery, which can play around with your emotions without the news of the nodules being cancer... so is it any wonder you are feeling disappointed, scared, and not knowing what to think?

    I was diagnosed with Colon Cancer, Stage 3 in Dec/06. I went through the surgery, 8 months of chemo, 6 weeks of daily radiation and actually did very well through all of it (I'm a fighter, just like everyone here is!). But, let's not fool ourselves... going through the treatment IS rough in that you are tired, maybe feeling ill and maybe having side affects like the ones the Oxy gives. But we fight on because we know that for all the nastiness of the treatment, it is doing what it is suppose to do... it is killing off everything in sight, including the good cells (lucky for us, the good ones regenerate, the cancer ones die off).

    After going through all of this which ended in Oct/07, 2 months later they found a large growth on my adrenal gland (which we knew about... it had been there for 7+ years) that was now lighting up on the PET scan... plus a nodule in my right lung. So, I have now had the adrenal gland removed and we are now working on the strategy for the lung. Except there are now 4 more tiny nodules on the lung... 3 on the right, 1 on the left.

    When I found this out this week, I went through the same emotions and fears as when you are first diagnosed. Here we go again! Of course I'm going to fight this... I have another PET scan scheduled for Oct 1 and then, it looks like I'll be starting chemo again.

    Is it worth it?? Darn tootin' well it's worth it!! We will fight and fight and never give up because there's always the chance it just takes one more round of treatment and that will kill it off and we will be NED. And if it takes longer, at least with the treatments, we can keep it under control.

    So, accept that being discouraged is totally normal and actually very healthy. If you didn't feel anything one way or the other, then how could you muster up the strength to carry on?? Know that you are not the only one who feels discouraged when you find out there's more... we all go through that, but then we must pick ourselves up and fight on! If the fear/panic doesn't go away, then go to your doctor, explain to him/her that the fear is impacting your life and don't feel bad about getting a prescription for an anti-anxiety or anti-depressant med. There is nothing worse than having your life come to a halt because you can't function because of fear.

    Hang in there... and keep talking! This group is fabulous for listening and giving hope.

    Huggggs,

    Cheryl

    Cheryl you posts have been great.
    I really admire your spirit and attitude. I had a cea test two months ago that was a little high - 4.2 - my norm is about 2.5 (I am being treated at Mass General, the way they measure cea they want it below 3.5) so it was a little out of my norm. My CT scan was normal. I was 3A - 2 lymph nodes positive, surgery, 8 rounds of folfox (I only finished 5 with oxalplatin) but did the rest and then 28 days of chemo and 5Fu. Have been ned since October 2007 - I don't know if my cea was an anomally or a precurser of things to come.

    I am trying to ignore the fear that I might get bad results in October and figure so far so good.

    You seem to be doing really well.

    Pam

    by the way my sister's name is Cheryl.
  • CherylHutch
    CherylHutch Member Posts: 1,375 Member
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    pamness said:

    Cheryl you posts have been great.
    I really admire your spirit and attitude. I had a cea test two months ago that was a little high - 4.2 - my norm is about 2.5 (I am being treated at Mass General, the way they measure cea they want it below 3.5) so it was a little out of my norm. My CT scan was normal. I was 3A - 2 lymph nodes positive, surgery, 8 rounds of folfox (I only finished 5 with oxalplatin) but did the rest and then 28 days of chemo and 5Fu. Have been ned since October 2007 - I don't know if my cea was an anomally or a precurser of things to come.

    I am trying to ignore the fear that I might get bad results in October and figure so far so good.

    You seem to be doing really well.

    Pam

    by the way my sister's name is Cheryl.

    Attitude
    Awww, Pam, thanks for your comments. I've always thought of myself as a fairly positive person, but when diagnosed, after getting over the shock I have to admit my attitude was really put to the test. I don't think I've ever been so scared in my life. It's that fear of the unknown and of course, the terror of maybe the treatments won't work for me.

    I also don't have answers for some of the things that confuse me. Like.. if the chemo is systemic and goes through your system killing all cells in it's path (good and bad), then how the heck do some of the bad survive to take root later??

    In my case, the colon cancer did spread to the adrenal gland that just happened to have a benign growth on it. How can that be? When did it spread? Then, there are the nodules on the lung. How the heck did the cancer spread to the adrenal gland and the lung, but not to the liver or anywhere else in the abdomen? No one really has the answers to this and since it is not that common for colon cancer to spread to the adrenal, there are no studies on how often does this happen

    I'm one of those Capricorns who want to have the answers to everything and sometimes there just aren't answers... or not answers that satisfy us.

    But, as far as I'm concerned I look and feel like I'm doing well. The picture of me that you all see was taken about 2 weeks ago and I certainly don't look like I've been through the wringer ... so sometimes it's hard to understand how you can feel just fine but in reality there's something nasty going on inside.

    Try not to worry about your results in October. The difference between 2.5 and 4.2 is not that great, so it could just be a blip (which is not uncommon at all). Up here, they think that anything from a 4.0 or less is considered normal and that's just an average since everyone's norm can be somewhat different. Just before I had my adrenal surgery, my CEA was a 30... had the surgery at the end of June and in August, my CEA was a 1.5. Needless to say, I was thrilled! So you just watch... if you have your CEA done again in October, you might find it's right back down where it's suppose to be... and there's no reason it shouldn't :)

    Hang in there, Pam!

    Huggggggs,

    Cheryl
  • Madre
    Madre Member Posts: 123
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    pamness said:

    Cheryl you posts have been great.
    I really admire your spirit and attitude. I had a cea test two months ago that was a little high - 4.2 - my norm is about 2.5 (I am being treated at Mass General, the way they measure cea they want it below 3.5) so it was a little out of my norm. My CT scan was normal. I was 3A - 2 lymph nodes positive, surgery, 8 rounds of folfox (I only finished 5 with oxalplatin) but did the rest and then 28 days of chemo and 5Fu. Have been ned since October 2007 - I don't know if my cea was an anomally or a precurser of things to come.

    I am trying to ignore the fear that I might get bad results in October and figure so far so good.

    You seem to be doing really well.

    Pam

    by the way my sister's name is Cheryl.

    CEA numbers ???
    Pam,
    I know everyone is different but for me I don't hold much faith in the CEA number. When my tumor was active (stage 3b) it was 1.7, after surgery it went to 1.2 since then is has been 1.5, 1.5, 2.0 and this week 1.8. My doctor says anything under 6 he is happy. I feel if my number was only 1.7 when there was an active tumor, for me it must not be too accurate, although i still always ask what it is. Try not to worry about that number (easier said than done). Prayers coming your way.
    Madre
  • bigCrandy
    bigCrandy Member Posts: 75
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    It's not just a battle, it's a WAR!
    I'm sorry to hear about your diagnosis, I'll be praying for you and your recovery. My cancer came back too, not in my lungs but in abdominal lymph nodes. I did have 2 spots on my lungs but they didn't light up on the Pet scan. I was diagnosed with stage 3c colon cancer in April 07. After 6 months of FolFox I was NED for 9 months. Now I'm on FolFiri + Avastin. I was disappointed to say the least because I thought it was gone forever. I thought the battle was won, now I know there will be more battles because it's an all out war against cancer. We may lose some battles but we must win the war. You're not ready to throw in the towel because you are a fighter and that's what it takes to win. It's all about attitude, live strong, fear nothing, and never give up! You can do it, love, Randy
  • jenjerandkatesmom
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    bigCrandy said:

    It's not just a battle, it's a WAR!
    I'm sorry to hear about your diagnosis, I'll be praying for you and your recovery. My cancer came back too, not in my lungs but in abdominal lymph nodes. I did have 2 spots on my lungs but they didn't light up on the Pet scan. I was diagnosed with stage 3c colon cancer in April 07. After 6 months of FolFox I was NED for 9 months. Now I'm on FolFiri + Avastin. I was disappointed to say the least because I thought it was gone forever. I thought the battle was won, now I know there will be more battles because it's an all out war against cancer. We may lose some battles but we must win the war. You're not ready to throw in the towel because you are a fighter and that's what it takes to win. It's all about attitude, live strong, fear nothing, and never give up! You can do it, love, Randy

    War
    Feeling very angry today about the cancer coming back. For me, anger is such a positive feeling because it revs me up for the fight. Randy..you're right..it's a war and I plan on winning this. There is strength in numbers so with all of us praying together I know we're going to kick this disease into the next universe. Thanks to all of you for being here!