How are we suppose to act when we have cancer?

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ginnyl
ginnyl Member Posts: 38
Family and friends have said many times you dont act like you have cancer. Well I dont when chemo or radiation dont have mw so sick I can barely hold my head up much less act. I am a eleven year survivor of stage 4 breast with mets to the bones and still doing chemo called herceptin every three weeks. I must say the day I take herceptin I usually a little sick to my stomach and nornmally have a queen size head ache if you really want to know the truth I feel like a drunk sleeping off aa hangover so i sleep three or 4 hours and i am back to myself. I am 62 years young I drive I clean my house,go to church,out with my friends, takee care of grandkids,help mow grass with the tractor,and about what ever I want. If there is a set of rules how we are to act with cancer I haven^t read them and no intention of reading them. I live each day as it comes. I still get upset and cry and I know stress is*nt good fpr cancer but there is stress in life and we learn to live with it. In thde last 11 years our family has had devorces marriages, birhs,not necesarily in that order. We have lost our parents ,brothers, and a nephew. our housr burnt. we have had other family members come down with cancer . What i am saying we have had happyness along with the stress. So take each day and make the most. God won^t put more on us then we can stand

Comments

  • mamolady
    mamolady Member Posts: 796 Member
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    Like a human being
    I think you are doing fine. I can't understand why people like to label or stereotype people. Cancer is what it is. We should not let it define us. It adds to and takes away from us as it is.
    My family was the same during treatment. My dad always told me how good I sounded. Well that is because I didn't talk to anyone when I didn't sound good.....
    "to thine own self, be true" is one of my favorite quotes. I don't take it to mean look out for yourself. I understand it to be, don't let others actions change who you are.

    If they keep it up, offer up advise on how they are suppose to act around a person with cancer.......

    Cindy
  • disneyfan2008
    disneyfan2008 Member Posts: 6,583 Member
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    We each have to do what WE have to do
    A CO worker had BC same time as me..suregery almost same time etc...but she handled it so much differently then me. Anotehr co worker said to me well you know you handled it much better then ----!

    who knows what her home life was like-what other fears she had them me? maybe I am just the type to look on the good side of things...I felt I was happy i never missed a mammo , pap etc..and caught mine so early...

    My husband has even said well NOT REALLY cancer since early? I was in awee...LIKE OKE I had chunk of chest removed-8 wks daily radiation! what is not cancer like in all that?

    Denise
  • skipper54
    skipper54 Member Posts: 936 Member
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    We each have to do what WE have to do
    A CO worker had BC same time as me..suregery almost same time etc...but she handled it so much differently then me. Anotehr co worker said to me well you know you handled it much better then ----!

    who knows what her home life was like-what other fears she had them me? maybe I am just the type to look on the good side of things...I felt I was happy i never missed a mammo , pap etc..and caught mine so early...

    My husband has even said well NOT REALLY cancer since early? I was in awee...LIKE OKE I had chunk of chest removed-8 wks daily radiation! what is not cancer like in all that?

    Denise

    How indeed?
    I had someone tell me once that I didn't look or act my age. I don't mind the not looking part but wasn't too sure about the acting my age. What does that mean exactly? How are you supposed to look or act at any given age? How are you supposed to look or act with cancer? (Other than bald that is! lol) I tried to keep doing my normal things as much as I could FOR ME. I had to believe I could win and the way to remind myself of that was to keep going. Now here I am with people telling me how good I look and how great my hair is. What did they think I would look like? [Sorry about the mini-rant] Each one of us handles this differently, not better or worse, just differently. We do what we have to do. The "heck" with anyone else's expectations.
  • jendrey
    jendrey Member Posts: 377
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    skipper54 said:

    How indeed?
    I had someone tell me once that I didn't look or act my age. I don't mind the not looking part but wasn't too sure about the acting my age. What does that mean exactly? How are you supposed to look or act at any given age? How are you supposed to look or act with cancer? (Other than bald that is! lol) I tried to keep doing my normal things as much as I could FOR ME. I had to believe I could win and the way to remind myself of that was to keep going. Now here I am with people telling me how good I look and how great my hair is. What did they think I would look like? [Sorry about the mini-rant] Each one of us handles this differently, not better or worse, just differently. We do what we have to do. The "heck" with anyone else's expectations.

    We're not acting...?!!!
    We're not acting - we are forced to live cancer. Not a one of us chose to have this in our life. We do the best we can, when we can and however we can. If anyone expects anything more than that they're in for a real lunchbox let down!!!

    (((Hugs)))
  • sea60
    sea60 Member Posts: 2,613
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    Ginny,
    if that doesn't sound like LIVING, I don't know what does. Life marches on with or without cancer.

    Great post.

    Hugs,

    Sylvia
  • New Flower
    New Flower Member Posts: 4,294
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    sea60 said:

    Ginny,
    if that doesn't sound like LIVING, I don't know what does. Life marches on with or without cancer.

    Great post.

    Hugs,

    Sylvia

    Ginny
    Good discussion,
    Congratulations on 14 years. Great accomplishment
  • Pam5
    Pam5 Member Posts: 232
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    Ginny
    Good discussion,
    Congratulations on 14 years. Great accomplishment

    I don't know how I act now
    I don't know how I act now that I have cancer again. I don't think I act any differently than I did before. I even forget that I'm wearing a scarf because I have no hair until I get that knowing look from people. I feel pretty good most days now that they stopped the chemo that was giving me pneumonia (3 times). The pill I'm taking doesn't seem to have any side effect.
    My lungs are not completely healed but they're on their way. There don't seem to be any set rules for how we should act when we have cancer. Each day is another gift and I try to live it to its fullest. Sounds like you're doing great!

    Pam
  • Heatherbelle
    Heatherbelle Member Posts: 1,226 Member
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    I'm glad that you're living
    I'm glad that you're living each day to the fullest. I do that also. Sometimes to the chagrin of my husband, when i spend the afternoon playing or snuggling with our 2 year old instead of getting my housework done. People told me too, when I was having chemo last year, that I was handling everything so well & being so strong. I wasn't being anything -that's just how I am. Chemo wasn't fun. I cried alot and I complained alot but when it came down to it it didn't change who I AM. It may have changed what I was capable of - because I pretty much slept for 4 months while in treatment, my body was weak and sore. But my spirit was the same.
    I don't agree, though, that God doesn't give us any more than we can handle. I'm not religious but I consider myself very spiritual, and God gave me more than I could ever handle. I was 34 when I was diagnosed, with a 2 yr old and a 10 yr old. I couldn't handle hearing the words "unfortunately it IS a cancer that we're dealing with". I couldn't handle 2 months later when my own mother was diagnosed by my SAME doctor and hearing him tell her "the changes on your mammogram ARE cancerous". I couldn't handle when the genetic counselor told me "your bloodwork came back positive for BRCA1 gene mutation, so your daughters are at great risk", and that they will need mammograms starting at age 24. It was also a little hard to handle hearing that i would have to have a complete hysterectomy & go into immediate menopause at 35, when there's nothing wrong with those parts at all, but because it was dangerous to my future to keep them in.
    I do, however, make the most out of each day and each moment.
    *hugs*
    Heather
  • dbhadra
    dbhadra Member Posts: 344 Member
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    I'm glad that you're living
    I'm glad that you're living each day to the fullest. I do that also. Sometimes to the chagrin of my husband, when i spend the afternoon playing or snuggling with our 2 year old instead of getting my housework done. People told me too, when I was having chemo last year, that I was handling everything so well & being so strong. I wasn't being anything -that's just how I am. Chemo wasn't fun. I cried alot and I complained alot but when it came down to it it didn't change who I AM. It may have changed what I was capable of - because I pretty much slept for 4 months while in treatment, my body was weak and sore. But my spirit was the same.
    I don't agree, though, that God doesn't give us any more than we can handle. I'm not religious but I consider myself very spiritual, and God gave me more than I could ever handle. I was 34 when I was diagnosed, with a 2 yr old and a 10 yr old. I couldn't handle hearing the words "unfortunately it IS a cancer that we're dealing with". I couldn't handle 2 months later when my own mother was diagnosed by my SAME doctor and hearing him tell her "the changes on your mammogram ARE cancerous". I couldn't handle when the genetic counselor told me "your bloodwork came back positive for BRCA1 gene mutation, so your daughters are at great risk", and that they will need mammograms starting at age 24. It was also a little hard to handle hearing that i would have to have a complete hysterectomy & go into immediate menopause at 35, when there's nothing wrong with those parts at all, but because it was dangerous to my future to keep them in.
    I do, however, make the most out of each day and each moment.
    *hugs*
    Heather

    Good points
    How are we "supposed to act"? I recently had someone tell me " I don't think I could do what are you doing" (dealing with cancer) . My response was, yes, you would, because you don't have a choice. I do have a choice HOW to deal with it, but don't have a choice whether to deal with it or not - it's there in my life and , it is what it is. "you're so strong" what does that mean? I've cried, I've screamed, I take anti depressants - remind me again how I am so strong?

    Laura
  • Linedancer54
    Linedancer54 Member Posts: 18
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    I just smile and say thank you
    When I am told I look good or I look like I really bounced back quick.I go line dancing a couple times a week and I didn't go for a couple months. Half way through chemo, when the taxol really started giving me bad aches and pains, I realized walking made me feel better. One night I told my husband I was going dancing to see if it helped, and it did.He thought I was crazy, but it was the best thing for me. I really love when he comes with me. One guy just told me I really bounced back fast...his x wife had breast cancer, so he understood. I decided to be positive and as fun as I used to be. I realize people just don't always know what to say and I am not going out to look for sympathy. Love to dance and hang with my friends while I can. Most of them know what I have been through.I'm grateful to still be alive!I'm triple negative, so who knows what will be in a year. I got to live now!I sure don't want to hear I look like heck :)I take it all as a compliment, b/c I think it's meant to be.
    I think most people mean well.Sometimes the have seen someone who looked rally bad at the end. Could be me someday. But not now!Don't get me wrong, sometimes if I let myself really think about it, it bums me out. So I am glad to be back to work and back to dancing.Less time to feel sad.I also know a woman who told me she always tried to be upbeat b/c she wanted to be a role model for other women with BC. I try to be like her.
    Any way, I hope you all are doing well and and hope someday soon for a cure.God bless you all.

    Sandy
  • carkris
    carkris Member Posts: 4,553 Member
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    I just smile and say thank you
    When I am told I look good or I look like I really bounced back quick.I go line dancing a couple times a week and I didn't go for a couple months. Half way through chemo, when the taxol really started giving me bad aches and pains, I realized walking made me feel better. One night I told my husband I was going dancing to see if it helped, and it did.He thought I was crazy, but it was the best thing for me. I really love when he comes with me. One guy just told me I really bounced back fast...his x wife had breast cancer, so he understood. I decided to be positive and as fun as I used to be. I realize people just don't always know what to say and I am not going out to look for sympathy. Love to dance and hang with my friends while I can. Most of them know what I have been through.I'm grateful to still be alive!I'm triple negative, so who knows what will be in a year. I got to live now!I sure don't want to hear I look like heck :)I take it all as a compliment, b/c I think it's meant to be.
    I think most people mean well.Sometimes the have seen someone who looked rally bad at the end. Could be me someday. But not now!Don't get me wrong, sometimes if I let myself really think about it, it bums me out. So I am glad to be back to work and back to dancing.Less time to feel sad.I also know a woman who told me she always tried to be upbeat b/c she wanted to be a role model for other women with BC. I try to be like her.
    Any way, I hope you all are doing well and and hope someday soon for a cure.God bless you all.

    Sandy

    Any way we f'n want to.
    I

    Any way we f'n want to.

    I also dont believe that God gives you what you can handle, but what doesnt kill you makes you stronger and heather that is definately you.
    I have the same picture as you , at 34 I was diagnosed the first time too, with a 3 year old and a 9 month old, that I was still nursing. you find joy in every school play every game and dance recital you attend. snuggle away with doodie the time flies by.


    I have to say though I hate being compared to the people who were the poster children for chemo, because it beat the crap out of me doesnt mean I failed. Like I wanted to be the one that didnt sail through with a smile on her face. I crawled across that finish line, but ya know I made it and I am proud of me!!!!
    To heck with what prople say they are ignorant.
  • mariam_11_09
    mariam_11_09 Member Posts: 691
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    Pam5 said:

    I don't know how I act now
    I don't know how I act now that I have cancer again. I don't think I act any differently than I did before. I even forget that I'm wearing a scarf because I have no hair until I get that knowing look from people. I feel pretty good most days now that they stopped the chemo that was giving me pneumonia (3 times). The pill I'm taking doesn't seem to have any side effect.
    My lungs are not completely healed but they're on their way. There don't seem to be any set rules for how we should act when we have cancer. Each day is another gift and I try to live it to its fullest. Sounds like you're doing great!

    Pam

    I didn't wear a scarf on my

    I didn't wear a scarf on my head and had NO HAIR and people still did not believe I was having chemo. I had an older lady (I am 45) cut in front of me in line in the grocery store while I was on chemo with no hair on my head, saying that I was younger and in better health than her so I could let her go before me. Never mind the fact I was just dying to sit down because I felt like c&5#!

    I had two coworkers on different occasions say to me about my lack of hair - 'well you are making quite the statement shaving your head'. I politely told them this lack of hair was not by choice which immediately shut them up.

    I also had an elderly gentlemen who was having chemo at the same time I was tell my nurse that I looked too good and healthy to be having chemo!!!!!

    Admittedly, when I wasn't feeling awful, in which case I shut myself up at home, I was out feeling good and enjoying life in that moment so maybe it was that, that didn't give off the impressions something was going on.

    I don't know, I think many people are very misinformed about what it means to be going through cancer treatment. I mean, look at what we get on the movies!!! If it weren't for you guys on this site who educated me, that actually you could work while on chemo, that life still went on even though you were going through cancer treatment, I would honestly have fumbled my way through trying to figure that one out. SO BIG HUGS AND THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO HAS EDUCATED ME ON THIS SITE!
  • sinee
    sinee Member Posts: 196 Member
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    Got the best card
    from my cousin, it reads like this~ Cancer is not who you are, it's what's happening to you. So we'll still call each other to swap stories and advice. We'll still argue when we disagree and laugh when it's funny, and when you're scared and the world feels like too much, lean on me. like I'll still do with you. Because you are as you'be always been, someone who means so much to me. Imagine that. Yep, life goes on. Sinee
  • laughs_a_lot
    laughs_a_lot Member Posts: 1,368 Member
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    Act like???
    I must say it was reassurring for my grandson to say "Grandma you aren't letting this cancer get you down. You're just doing the same old stuff." I didn't want them worrying about me dying.

    I am not in any better finances now than I was a year ago when I did not have a bc diagnosis. So the facts are that I am home canning and freezing lots of food as I did last year. I've had people wonder if I should be doing this much. Well I have to do something to mitigate the fact that I no longer work two jobs. I could be worrying about cancer but instead I am taking power over something I can control. I can control if I grow food and if I perserve it for my future. I cannot control the cancer and how it behaves.

    I once was told I don;t act my age. I considered it a compliment. I am known as the serious/fun grandma. Serious about safety and fun in all sorts of other ways.