Just wondering

kit45
kit45 Member Posts: 89
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
Hey everybody,

I haven't posted in awhile as I've been having alot going on but tonight I thought I'd try and say hello. Just wondering I finished treatments in Sept, 08 and returned to work in Jan 09. Work is good...feels like I never left... but I can't seem to get a grip on my "new me".

My friends were so supportive but now seemed to be out of touch and I still want/need friends to talk with and none of them seem to understand. I am a single parent so I don't have the husband to "lean on" and no BF as of right now. Sometimes I just feel down and don't know why. When I try to reach out to my friends I get the feeling they are thinking "get over it"..but maybe its just my imagination. I have my 6 month onc appt on Friday and am optomistic everything is ok but emotionally I feel like I'm up and down and wonder if thats "normal"...wish I had a someone I could just talk to and a good cry... thanks for listening.

Comments

  • seof
    seof Member Posts: 819 Member
    I think folks who have not
    I think folks who have not been through this just don't know what to make of us. I don't think they mean to give us the cold shoulder, they just have no concept of how long the emotional issues continue. You were sick, you took your medicine, now you should be better, that's all...too bad cancer is not like a head cold, eh?

    I think the ups and downs are normal. Personally, I will always consider myself a cancer survivor, from the day I found the lump to the day I die. I am finished with treatments and I expect my reconstruction surgery in June to be the end of the medical aspects of being a survivor, but it has changed how I see me. I am more accepting of the big things and less of the little things...not sure what that's all about...I just don't fret as much and don't put up with stuff I don't have to put up with.

    It might help you to look up your local ACS and see if they have a survivors support group you could hook up with. staying in touch with this site can help too. Also, some people feel better if they get involved in something where they can focus on helping others, not so much on themselves. Maybe try volunteering...read to kids in a library or a school, work in an animal shelter, drive for meals-on-wheels, drive other survivors to treatments (ACS can help you with this) or whatever might interest you.

    Hope this helps, seof
  • Moopy23
    Moopy23 Member Posts: 1,751 Member
    When Treatment Ends
    Hi, Kit, I am sorry for the difficult time you are having. I am not through with treatments, but from what I have read, your emotions are very normal and to be expected. There are older threads on this board where members have talked about their feelings after treatment ended.

    I am already finding, as Seof said, that many people, even friends and family, think it is over when treatment ends, like you had appendicitis or something. It is not that they don't care. I don't think anyone who has not had cancer really can truly understand. This board, and survivors' groups meetings, again as Seof suggested, are places where you will find women who know what you are going through. Also, the ACS has a 24-hour number that you can call. Others have told me of the comfort and help they got through these calls.

    You have already come through so much. If you made it through treatments, you can handle this time as well. You are not alone; the wonderful sisters on this board are here for you,day or night.
  • Kristin N
    Kristin N Member Posts: 1,968 Member
    Kit, stay strong and know
    Kit, stay strong and know that we here support you and will listen to you. I totally understand. I am still in treatment, going thru my 37 radiation treatments now. The first thing people say to me when they see me is " wow..you look so good". I feel like asking..what do you expect me to look like? death? I know they mean well, but, I think if we look good and act ok..people tend to forget that we are battling inside with a horrible beast. I put on a good front with my husband, friends and family. When I do let it down and cry or act depressed..they don't seem to understand because I "seem so good". I hope this makes sense..lol
  • rjjj
    rjjj Member Posts: 1,822 Member
    ive read the books
    and ive done the research..i've listened to my sweet sisters go onward through the journey. But i still don't know i am not there yet but almost! from what i hear from our survivors this is a very scary time. before we are actively fighting the beast...then there is a periods of silence, just waiting for the ugly one to rear its head again. from what i hear our friends and loved ones believe we are all over this. not so.. this is a life experience and we change and learn and become a new person.. this can make us a better person, wanting to help others like us, realizing that we need to make the most out of each moment because our lives are fragile..and mortality has tapped us on the shoulder. I believe that God has many lessons and trials for us..and we were given this for a reason. I will give thanks to my lord for choosing me to help in this small part that i can. to make a difference. maybe there will be a cure by the time my grandaughters grow up.

    sorry i got to deep. may God bless you
    jackie
  • Ltalcott
    Ltalcott Member Posts: 119
    rjjj said:

    ive read the books
    and ive done the research..i've listened to my sweet sisters go onward through the journey. But i still don't know i am not there yet but almost! from what i hear from our survivors this is a very scary time. before we are actively fighting the beast...then there is a periods of silence, just waiting for the ugly one to rear its head again. from what i hear our friends and loved ones believe we are all over this. not so.. this is a life experience and we change and learn and become a new person.. this can make us a better person, wanting to help others like us, realizing that we need to make the most out of each moment because our lives are fragile..and mortality has tapped us on the shoulder. I believe that God has many lessons and trials for us..and we were given this for a reason. I will give thanks to my lord for choosing me to help in this small part that i can. to make a difference. maybe there will be a cure by the time my grandaughters grow up.

    sorry i got to deep. may God bless you
    jackie

    great thought
    "our lives are fragile..and mortality has tapped us on the shoulder."

    Jackie, I pulled this line out of your post. Perfect.

    I'm just getting over my initial surgery and have chemo/hormonal therapy ahead of me, nipple construction, tatooing, and so on--so I've got things to fight right now.

    But after things "settle down" on that front, that's another time this support group is going to be important.

    hugs, Lisa
  • mimivac
    mimivac Member Posts: 2,143
    Kristin N said:

    Kit, stay strong and know
    Kit, stay strong and know that we here support you and will listen to you. I totally understand. I am still in treatment, going thru my 37 radiation treatments now. The first thing people say to me when they see me is " wow..you look so good". I feel like asking..what do you expect me to look like? death? I know they mean well, but, I think if we look good and act ok..people tend to forget that we are battling inside with a horrible beast. I put on a good front with my husband, friends and family. When I do let it down and cry or act depressed..they don't seem to understand because I "seem so good". I hope this makes sense..lol

    "But you look so good!"
    Yes, I think people tend to think that those who have had cancer should be pale, weak, and hospitalized. When you are not like that, they assume everything is resolved and that cancer is a distant memory. As we all know, that is far from the truth. As Jackie said, there is the fear of recurrence, of having to go through treatments again and face mortality. I alternate between being happy and content to be healthy and alive, to being fearful about what's down the road. I think after we have been through an experience like this, we need to do what's right for us, be gentle with ourselves. If others cannot understand, then it might be best to just make peace with that and move on. Not everyone will get it.
  • Cindy54
    Cindy54 Member Posts: 452
    Me Too
    Boy, if I had a nickle for every time someone said "you look good", I would have had enough to take my dream vacation! It's true, no one understands us like another cancer survivor. My friends also have that distance thing going, now that I am out of treatment. They seem to feel I am all okay and they no longer have to worry about me. Well, I still need support! Gosh dang it. I have taken to trying other things that get me out of the house and moving...to try and make new friends. And yes, I do tell my story if someone asks or the subject comes up. You would be surprised how often cancer comes up in ordinary conversations, it's like it has touched us all in some way. Cindt
  • mimivac
    mimivac Member Posts: 2,143
    Cindy54 said:

    Me Too
    Boy, if I had a nickle for every time someone said "you look good", I would have had enough to take my dream vacation! It's true, no one understands us like another cancer survivor. My friends also have that distance thing going, now that I am out of treatment. They seem to feel I am all okay and they no longer have to worry about me. Well, I still need support! Gosh dang it. I have taken to trying other things that get me out of the house and moving...to try and make new friends. And yes, I do tell my story if someone asks or the subject comes up. You would be surprised how often cancer comes up in ordinary conversations, it's like it has touched us all in some way. Cindt

    Cancer is everywhere
    I am surprised by this, too, although I don't know why. Half of all men and a third of women will get cancer at least once in their lives. My next door neighbor heard about me and remarked to my husband that she was in remission from breast cancer herself. I sometimes wonder how many others in my condo building have had or currently have cancer. It's like an epidemic...
  • RE
    RE Member Posts: 4,591 Member
    Insensitivity
    Kit these co-workers and friends simply have no idea how difficult cancer is to expierience both physically and mentally. They don't know that chemo and rads can leave us with life changing after effects and most don't wish to know. They are like the ostrich and wish to bury their heads in the sand and pretend we are the same as we once were. I agree that a support group would probably serve you well, give you an outlet to express yourself with those who understand. Of course we are always here for you too and we certainly understand.

    Hugs,

    RE
  • creampuff91344
    creampuff91344 Member Posts: 988
    RE said:

    Insensitivity
    Kit these co-workers and friends simply have no idea how difficult cancer is to expierience both physically and mentally. They don't know that chemo and rads can leave us with life changing after effects and most don't wish to know. They are like the ostrich and wish to bury their heads in the sand and pretend we are the same as we once were. I agree that a support group would probably serve you well, give you an outlet to express yourself with those who understand. Of course we are always here for you too and we certainly understand.

    Hugs,

    RE

    Having people understand the
    Having people understand the unknown is an impossibility. However, we, as cancer survivors, can be the flag bearers when it comes to educating others on how it feels to be a survivor. When I am asked how I am doing now that treatment is over, I am usually very honest...."Life does not go on as usual. It is a work in progress, and each day is a blessing. However, I don't take the next day for granted, because you never know what life is going to send yur way." This type of honesty is taken in two ways...either they don't know how to respond, or they ask questions to educate themselves on how I am feeling deep inside. More often than not, the unaffected person becomes more enlightened, and a lot more understanding of where I am standing.

    When working with the Relay For Life program years ago, I always took the opportunity to let those volunteers know why they were there. I would ask everyone in the stadium to raise their hand if they, one of their loved lones, or friend had been affected by cancer. Then while holding up their hands, I would ask everyone to look around to see all of the raised hands....THAT WAS WHY WE WERE THERE. Cancer affects so many people, and anyone you pass in the store has probably had an experience with the disease, or been a caregiver. Our stories are our own, and I really think that when these stories are known by everyone we come in contact with, the quicker we will find a cure for this disease. Cancer shouldn't be a hidden disease, it should be screamed from the rooftops for all the world to join the fight to find a cure. Too many have suffered, and will continue to suffer. Our experiences are assisting future generations in how their treatment will be given, and even if this disease will be wiped off of the face of the earth like polio. Hang in their, dear people, and know that we are in this fight together, and there will be victory, even if on a small scale...one by one.

    Hugs,

    Judy
  • kit45
    kit45 Member Posts: 89
    seof said:

    I think folks who have not
    I think folks who have not been through this just don't know what to make of us. I don't think they mean to give us the cold shoulder, they just have no concept of how long the emotional issues continue. You were sick, you took your medicine, now you should be better, that's all...too bad cancer is not like a head cold, eh?

    I think the ups and downs are normal. Personally, I will always consider myself a cancer survivor, from the day I found the lump to the day I die. I am finished with treatments and I expect my reconstruction surgery in June to be the end of the medical aspects of being a survivor, but it has changed how I see me. I am more accepting of the big things and less of the little things...not sure what that's all about...I just don't fret as much and don't put up with stuff I don't have to put up with.

    It might help you to look up your local ACS and see if they have a survivors support group you could hook up with. staying in touch with this site can help too. Also, some people feel better if they get involved in something where they can focus on helping others, not so much on themselves. Maybe try volunteering...read to kids in a library or a school, work in an animal shelter, drive for meals-on-wheels, drive other survivors to treatments (ACS can help you with this) or whatever might interest you.

    Hope this helps, seof

    Definitely helps
    Thanks Seof and everyone who answered my call for help. I will reach out to ACS for a survivor support group. Never thought of this. I wll take one day at a time and one foot in front of the other... Love, Kit
  • Jeanne D
    Jeanne D Member Posts: 1,867

    Having people understand the
    Having people understand the unknown is an impossibility. However, we, as cancer survivors, can be the flag bearers when it comes to educating others on how it feels to be a survivor. When I am asked how I am doing now that treatment is over, I am usually very honest...."Life does not go on as usual. It is a work in progress, and each day is a blessing. However, I don't take the next day for granted, because you never know what life is going to send yur way." This type of honesty is taken in two ways...either they don't know how to respond, or they ask questions to educate themselves on how I am feeling deep inside. More often than not, the unaffected person becomes more enlightened, and a lot more understanding of where I am standing.

    When working with the Relay For Life program years ago, I always took the opportunity to let those volunteers know why they were there. I would ask everyone in the stadium to raise their hand if they, one of their loved lones, or friend had been affected by cancer. Then while holding up their hands, I would ask everyone to look around to see all of the raised hands....THAT WAS WHY WE WERE THERE. Cancer affects so many people, and anyone you pass in the store has probably had an experience with the disease, or been a caregiver. Our stories are our own, and I really think that when these stories are known by everyone we come in contact with, the quicker we will find a cure for this disease. Cancer shouldn't be a hidden disease, it should be screamed from the rooftops for all the world to join the fight to find a cure. Too many have suffered, and will continue to suffer. Our experiences are assisting future generations in how their treatment will be given, and even if this disease will be wiped off of the face of the earth like polio. Hang in their, dear people, and know that we are in this fight together, and there will be victory, even if on a small scale...one by one.

    Hugs,

    Judy

    Your reply brought me to
    Your reply brought me to tears Judy, but, good tears! You are an inspiration! Thank you for writing that, and, I truly mean that!
  • Kristin N
    Kristin N Member Posts: 1,968 Member

    Having people understand the
    Having people understand the unknown is an impossibility. However, we, as cancer survivors, can be the flag bearers when it comes to educating others on how it feels to be a survivor. When I am asked how I am doing now that treatment is over, I am usually very honest...."Life does not go on as usual. It is a work in progress, and each day is a blessing. However, I don't take the next day for granted, because you never know what life is going to send yur way." This type of honesty is taken in two ways...either they don't know how to respond, or they ask questions to educate themselves on how I am feeling deep inside. More often than not, the unaffected person becomes more enlightened, and a lot more understanding of where I am standing.

    When working with the Relay For Life program years ago, I always took the opportunity to let those volunteers know why they were there. I would ask everyone in the stadium to raise their hand if they, one of their loved lones, or friend had been affected by cancer. Then while holding up their hands, I would ask everyone to look around to see all of the raised hands....THAT WAS WHY WE WERE THERE. Cancer affects so many people, and anyone you pass in the store has probably had an experience with the disease, or been a caregiver. Our stories are our own, and I really think that when these stories are known by everyone we come in contact with, the quicker we will find a cure for this disease. Cancer shouldn't be a hidden disease, it should be screamed from the rooftops for all the world to join the fight to find a cure. Too many have suffered, and will continue to suffer. Our experiences are assisting future generations in how their treatment will be given, and even if this disease will be wiped off of the face of the earth like polio. Hang in their, dear people, and know that we are in this fight together, and there will be victory, even if on a small scale...one by one.

    Hugs,

    Judy

    Judy, you write like an
    Judy, you write like an angel. Thanks for that.
  • kit45
    kit45 Member Posts: 89
    Kristin N said:

    Judy, you write like an
    Judy, you write like an angel. Thanks for that.

    Thanks Judy
    love what you wrote. Love, kit
  • tasha_111
    tasha_111 Member Posts: 2,072
    kit45 said:

    Thanks Judy
    love what you wrote. Love, kit

    Creampuff
    I knew there was a reason I loved you! Well said....... Huge Hugs Jxxxxxxxxxxxxx