How are you?

jojo elizapest
jojo elizapest Member Posts: 122
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
a pretty standard question...almost as automatic as 'have a nice day'...but sometimes it makes me just want to say

-I have cancer how do you think
-exhausted and feeling useless
-tired of saying tired

I am sure the person posing the question is not looking for the real scoop...or soemtimes I feel like the question is coming from someone much younger and I must to be brave, strong, pIositive....

So I am trying to put or see the positive in each piece of news that comes my way...

My 'last' chemo session last wednesday will now be followed by one more of the same type and then four more with a different cocktail...so chemo through August. POS: RESTFUL SUMMER

I am transitioning from short term to long term disability and not much chance of returning to work this calendar year. POS: THANK GOODNESS MY EMPLOYER HAD SHORT AND LONG TERM DIS INSURANCE

I haven't nor have wanted to order food in a restaurant in a couple of months (something that was a favorite pasttime). POS: SAVING MONEY

This all seems so (as Simon Cowell would say) self indulgent...

The good news is a chest CT two weeks ago showed that the was 'considerable improvement' in the size of the nodules on the lining of my lung. If the cancer will retreat from the lung surgery on the breast will be considered...so something is working and I am further down the path.

I just have to figure out how to take care of this new person I have become...
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Comments

  • tgf
    tgf Member Posts: 950 Member
    Hi Jojo ...

    My response when people ask how I am ... is "I am FINE" and they can interpret that any way they want ... but it usually seems to work as an answer.

    What they DO NOT KNOW is what I REALLY mean ... by "FINE"

    F = frustrated
    I = insecure
    N = neurotic
    E = exhausted

    And that pretty much covers it. They can take "fine" anyway they want ... but I know what I REALLY mean!

    hugs.
    teena

    Photobucket
  • gerrico1216
    gerrico1216 Member Posts: 41
    tgf said:

    Hi Jojo ...

    My response when people ask how I am ... is "I am FINE" and they can interpret that any way they want ... but it usually seems to work as an answer.

    What they DO NOT KNOW is what I REALLY mean ... by "FINE"

    F = frustrated
    I = insecure
    N = neurotic
    E = exhausted

    And that pretty much covers it. They can take "fine" anyway they want ... but I know what I REALLY mean!

    hugs.
    teena

    Photobucket

    Perfect Answer
    Teena you said it all.

    Hugs
    Darlene
  • Moopy23
    Moopy23 Member Posts: 1,751 Member
    Positives
    Jojo, it sounds like you have already started to learn how to take care of the new person you are. I am going to take some leaves out of your book. For example, being too tired and vulnerable to shop for clothes that fit is also saving money. The bald little orphan Annie look will be "in" soon, no doubt.

    Great news from the chest CT. I am so glad to hear the chemo is working.
  • CR1954
    CR1954 Member Posts: 1,390 Member
    Hey Jojo...
    Hey Jojo, I'm very happy that your CT showed improvement! A very good thing, indeed!

    Cancer and its treatment are so wearing on both body and mind. And you have been through the mill. Hang in there girl, we are all pulling for you and I'm sending great big hugs your way.

    All my best,
    CR
  • CR1954
    CR1954 Member Posts: 1,390 Member
    Moopy23 said:

    Positives
    Jojo, it sounds like you have already started to learn how to take care of the new person you are. I am going to take some leaves out of your book. For example, being too tired and vulnerable to shop for clothes that fit is also saving money. The bald little orphan Annie look will be "in" soon, no doubt.

    Great news from the chest CT. I am so glad to hear the chemo is working.

    Very true Moopy...
    Very true Moopy, look at the money we have saved on shampoo alone!

    Hugs,
    CR
  • Moopy23
    Moopy23 Member Posts: 1,751 Member
    CR1954 said:

    Very true Moopy...
    Very true Moopy, look at the money we have saved on shampoo alone!

    Hugs,
    CR

    Too True, CR
    Yep, we definitely need to add those bucks to our savings column.

    Not to introduce a negative, but will our husbands/significant others remember the savings when we DO start making up for lost time(hair) and buying everything hair-esque we can find? Which I fully intend to do....
  • Aortus
    Aortus Member Posts: 967
    Moopy23 said:

    Too True, CR
    Yep, we definitely need to add those bucks to our savings column.

    Not to introduce a negative, but will our husbands/significant others remember the savings when we DO start making up for lost time(hair) and buying everything hair-esque we can find? Which I fully intend to do....

    My dear, dear, wife...
    Have you ever thought of the considerable money my hairstyle (or the lack thereof) has saved our family finances over the years? I didn't think so.

    (looks around)

    Something tells me I'm not getting a lot of sympathy here.

    (looks around again)

    I'll be seeing ya!
  • chenheart
    chenheart Member Posts: 5,159
    tgf said:

    Hi Jojo ...

    My response when people ask how I am ... is "I am FINE" and they can interpret that any way they want ... but it usually seems to work as an answer.

    What they DO NOT KNOW is what I REALLY mean ... by "FINE"

    F = frustrated
    I = insecure
    N = neurotic
    E = exhausted

    And that pretty much covers it. They can take "fine" anyway they want ... but I know what I REALLY mean!

    hugs.
    teena

    Photobucket

    Just what the Dr ordered!
    I LOVE that, teena~ Fine, indeed! LOL LOL LOL

    Hugs,
    Claudia
  • mimivac
    mimivac Member Posts: 2,143
    Hey Jojo
    Well, it's hard to be "positive" all the time, I know. I hate that people expect it. My mom, for instance, cannot imagine that I would think about recurrence at all -- because SHE is 100% sure it will never come back. Your positives are good, though. I know it doesn't always help to think about how much worse things could be, but there is a talent to looking at the bright side. I just wish I had it more often.

    Great news about your lung nodules! And here is another positive: if the chemo wasn't working, they wouldn't keep doing it.

    Take care,
    Mimi
  • chenheart
    chenheart Member Posts: 5,159
    How are you, anyway??? LOL
    Be positive on the days you want to be, and rant and vent on the days you don't! You do have a lot of good news and positive aspects to concentrate on, and I know you are thankful and happy about that. As are we! You have my permission ( as if you need it!) to be self-indulgent whenever you want! So there!

    The "other stuff"...well, it just is, isn't it? You will muddle through and find yourself eventually on the outside looking in! And we will be here muddling with you~ is that even a real word????

    I was so happy to see your name today; thanks for posting and keeping us in the loop!

    Hugs,
    Claudia
  • Christmas Girl
    Christmas Girl Member Posts: 3,682 Member
    How are you - REALLY?
    Good for you, for turning the negatives into positives! Seeing the glass half full vs. half empty. This is a HUGE accomplishment! Takes a LOT of inner strength and mental fortitude. Be proud of yourself, because it's certainly not easy. Give yourself a pat on the back, jojo. I'm doing it, right now, the cyber way! Can you feel it? :-)

    EXCELLENT news re: lung improvement! Hang onto that news! Yes - you're making good, strong steps along the journey.

    The dumb things people say... Well... I truly believe most people MEAN well. They don't really know WHAT to say; so, they go for the sorta automatic default. Without really THINKING about it too much, certainly not enough. I have always been exceedingly polite. No matter what. Would rather walk away from a confrontation than engage in it. Mom always taught me: "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything." Yeah, that worked OK. 'Til breast cancer. Honestly, it began to "cost" me too much. My brain began to work in reverse; i.e., why should I lie in order to make someone ELSE feel better, especially when I feel like crap? So every now and again, I'd simply NOT think about my reply. Just went for it. Just blurted out whatever came to mind. For example: a relative dropped in, unannounced - on a particularly dreadful chemo day. All cheerful. Totally expecting me to feel the same way by virtue of the "surprise" visit. Couldn't have possibly been more wrong. When I was asked: "WHY are you so 'DOWN'?" - I said: "Because I have CANCER, THAT'S WHY! What's YOUR problem?" (By the way: I was bald, grey, and a skeleton at the time.) I felt liberated. Didn't apologize, either. Though did say he was welcome to stay; but, if he wanted to leave, I'd understand. He left. No hard feelings. We still love each other, dearly.

    Figuring out who you are now, and who you'll eventually be when all of your treatment has been completed simply takes TIME. And, lots of patience. Please be assured - you will still be yourself. Only better. Because what's already good about you will be enhanced and magnified, surely. And, whatever may be not so good will be easier to let go of. I think you're doing a great job, already.

    Kind regards, Susan
  • cats_toy
    cats_toy Member Posts: 1,462 Member
    jojo
    very good news, for all your positives!.
    I have friends ask me how I am, I say fine, and they say "well you look like ****!"
    and I love them for it!
    Enjoy your new person, and still love the old one!
    Cat

    darn: they bleeped me!
  • peggy65
    peggy65 Member Posts: 100
    your ability to dig out
    your ability to dig out positives from your chemo journey is extraordinary. you made me smile when i read your post. everything you say is true. i think that all of us have had similar instances when we just wanted to yell "I feel terrible" and have it be alright. i support in your effort especially during this difficult time of chemo.you will make it just fine and the new you will be fabulous. my heart goes out to you. love, peggy
  • peggy65
    peggy65 Member Posts: 100
    Moopy23 said:

    Positives
    Jojo, it sounds like you have already started to learn how to take care of the new person you are. I am going to take some leaves out of your book. For example, being too tired and vulnerable to shop for clothes that fit is also saving money. The bald little orphan Annie look will be "in" soon, no doubt.

    Great news from the chest CT. I am so glad to hear the chemo is working.

    moopy, your responses to
    moopy, your responses to jojo were so comforting. yeah there are a lot of positives if we can stop and look for them. and yes, when your hair grows back in you will be at the salon all the time. and the drug store hair isle. good luck. love, peggy
  • tasha_111
    tasha_111 Member Posts: 2,072
    Aortus said:

    My dear, dear, wife...
    Have you ever thought of the considerable money my hairstyle (or the lack thereof) has saved our family finances over the years? I didn't think so.

    (looks around)

    Something tells me I'm not getting a lot of sympathy here.

    (looks around again)

    I'll be seeing ya!

    Aortus......
    You get NO sympathy here........ nor do you deserve any, Your Bride is lovely (even bald) and so are you........Hugs Jxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • jojo elizapest
    jojo elizapest Member Posts: 122
    peggy65 said:

    your ability to dig out
    your ability to dig out positives from your chemo journey is extraordinary. you made me smile when i read your post. everything you say is true. i think that all of us have had similar instances when we just wanted to yell "I feel terrible" and have it be alright. i support in your effort especially during this difficult time of chemo.you will make it just fine and the new you will be fabulous. my heart goes out to you. love, peggy

    Thanks Peggy...if I have
    Thanks Peggy...if I have brought a smile then my day was productive....
  • jojo elizapest
    jojo elizapest Member Posts: 122
    THIS is awesome....thanks!
    thanks to all of you for posting...feeling stronger this evening...appreciate the responses...

    jojo
  • jojo elizapest
    jojo elizapest Member Posts: 122
    cats_toy said:

    jojo
    very good news, for all your positives!.
    I have friends ask me how I am, I say fine, and they say "well you look like ****!"
    and I love them for it!
    Enjoy your new person, and still love the old one!
    Cat

    darn: they bleeped me!

    Enjoy the new person....hmmmm
    Is this like the old brownie song...make new friends but ke ee ee pp the old...

    There is much to enjoy with this new found freedom from work...thanks
  • jojo elizapest
    jojo elizapest Member Posts: 122
    chenheart said:

    How are you, anyway??? LOL
    Be positive on the days you want to be, and rant and vent on the days you don't! You do have a lot of good news and positive aspects to concentrate on, and I know you are thankful and happy about that. As are we! You have my permission ( as if you need it!) to be self-indulgent whenever you want! So there!

    The "other stuff"...well, it just is, isn't it? You will muddle through and find yourself eventually on the outside looking in! And we will be here muddling with you~ is that even a real word????

    I was so happy to see your name today; thanks for posting and keeping us in the loop!

    Hugs,
    Claudia

    I love the spirit you bring
    I love the spirit you bring to your posts...I am working to transfer my muddleability to this situation. Over the years, again and again, I have proven to be an adept muddleifier and have often engaged in muddlfication just for the fun of watching others (also referred to as muddlees) muddling about.

    Thanks! jojo
  • jojo elizapest
    jojo elizapest Member Posts: 122
    mimivac said:

    Hey Jojo
    Well, it's hard to be "positive" all the time, I know. I hate that people expect it. My mom, for instance, cannot imagine that I would think about recurrence at all -- because SHE is 100% sure it will never come back. Your positives are good, though. I know it doesn't always help to think about how much worse things could be, but there is a talent to looking at the bright side. I just wish I had it more often.

    Great news about your lung nodules! And here is another positive: if the chemo wasn't working, they wouldn't keep doing it.

    Take care,
    Mimi

    You made me try a new tactic
    You made me try a new tactic to understanding....logic....LOL

    Thanks, jojo