Any regrets?

NJMOM
NJMOM Member Posts: 64

Sounds like a stupid question if you receive the news you wish to hear at the end of your treatment.  Did/do any of you regret the decision for the course of treatment you ahave received. As I stated in my other post, my husband has just begun this hellish ride and has already commented that he thinks the cure is worse than the disease. After reading many of your experiences, I'm wondering if farther down the road he's going to question whether all of  it was worth it. It's worth it to me to keep him around for a long time but my heart breaks at what might lie ahead for him.

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Comments

  • Kymberly1013
    Kymberly1013 Member Posts: 2 Member

    my dad is a couple weeks ahead of your husband. (Week 4 starts Monday)-- judging from your past post, I think he's on the same treatment plan too-- 35 rads, 7 cisplatin infusions... He said the same thing, "I think the treatment is going to be worse than the disease" and I think he was probably right, but I also think he was referencing the pain he'll feel during treatment and the potential side effects after...  He knows the alternative has a much more grim outlook, and I know that when he gets across the finish line and healing begins, he won't regret having the opportunity to see his grandchildren grow up, and experience all the beautiful things coming up in his life Post-cancer. We are so thankful that this treatmeant has an end in sight, and a cure! and even though we know there's some rough days ahead, it's so nice to have hope for when treatment ends! just gotta stay hopeful and encouraged long enough to get there!! :) We're already noticing his lymph node shrinking Which we of course love to see! :) 

     

    good luck to you and your husband!! I'll be praying for y'all!! 

  • CivilMatt
    CivilMatt Member Posts: 4,722 Member
    time to get tough

     

    NJMOM,

     

    No, I never regretted receiving treatment for cancer.  If you read enough  posts on here you would know that cancer is extremely cruel.

     

    In hindsight I wished my natural ability to combat foreign bodies inside me would have been stronger.   Going forward I feel that I receive much better nutrition for my self-defenses.  Without going overboard I now make a strong effort to eat healthier.

     

    I never thought of treatment as a hellish ride. To me it was more of  a ride on a stormy night  by myself.  I had a wonderful wife by my side, a great doctor, fantastic nurses, and the gentlest RAD technicians you could hope for, but it is still a ride you take alone.

     

    While I had issues with treatment side effects, they were all manageable.

     

    In the downhill side of treatment, life is good.

     

    Matt

     

    3y4m post

     

  • lornal
    lornal Member Posts: 428
    No Regets

    I have had head & neck cancer twice.  In 2007, it was tonsil - with surgery, radiation, and chemo.  During the treatment, I certainly wanted to quit and regetted started.  But, my doctor's did give me a week off - two times - in the 6 week treatment plan.  That certainly helped.  I didn't start really healing until I saw a new primary care doc, and he put me on anti-depressants.  It was just what I needed (and I was on them for a year)

    Cancer 2 was hypopharnx in 2014 and resulted in a total laryngectomy.  Surgery only.  Very hard making the adjustmest to my new life.  But, life is good, and I do not regret any of the treatments I have received.  Today, I spent the morning with my 3 year old granddaughter at the bead store - and then making jewelry for her with beads that she chose!

    Lorna 2007 & 2014

  • phrannie51
    phrannie51 Member Posts: 4,716
    Not for a second....

    in my recovery (or treatment) have I ever felt regret.....I'm kind of fond of being on this side of the dirt.  I learned to live one day at a time during treatment....never letting go of the fact that I only had to get through the day I was living....tomorrow would be here soon enough.  It's a rollercoaster ride, for sure.....but there are easier days mixed into the crappy ones.....

    Looking back on treatment is like looking back on anything else in our lives that was unpleasant....all we remember is that it sucked, we never remember the particulars....the details.....mother nature has a way of dulling things in our memories.

    So when you husband questions if it's worth it....remind him that treatment is only for 6 or 7 weeks....the alternative is forever.

    p

  • Noellesmom
    Noellesmom Member Posts: 1,859 Member
    yes

    Jim wonders if he made the right decision, if the pain he has now and the medications he takes to control it are what his life will be from now on.  We have a strong faith so we don't fear death and what it will bring.

    But not fighting was not really an option.  Not only was it not presented as one, it was not one Jim would have considered at the time.

    Remind your husband everyone gets tired during treatment, everyone wonders.  There is no way to know the outcome of treatment until you get there.

  • Kent Cass
    Kent Cass Member Posts: 1,898 Member

    yes

    Jim wonders if he made the right decision, if the pain he has now and the medications he takes to control it are what his life will be from now on.  We have a strong faith so we don't fear death and what it will bring.

    But not fighting was not really an option.  Not only was it not presented as one, it was not one Jim would have considered at the time.

    Remind your husband everyone gets tired during treatment, everyone wonders.  There is no way to know the outcome of treatment until you get there.

    NJMOM

    Years ago someone entered in a post what they'd either read, or heard from a C Dr.- that H&N treatment is the 2nd-harshest C treatment there is, though the success rate is one of the best. Only treatment for rectal C is worse. One must understand that such is a generalized statement/opinion, because H&N treatment regimes differ, just as all of our Cs are different to whatever degree.

    SO, WHAT MATT SAID IS CORRECT- time to man-up and get tough. Your husband's C has only one plan, and that's to kill him. And, trust me, death due to H&N C is a very ugly death. I lost a Cousin to what turned out to be Esophageal, and words to describe his last few weeks would make any of us sick to hear. It's a no-gloves fight in the ring, and his opponent has only one, forementioned, thing in mind.

    That said- YES, it is worth it. I'm 6 years and almost 4 months post-tx. My tx regime was somewhat extreme, and my Chemo Dr put me on Morph at the start of week #2; and I was too sick to get any rads in weeks 5&6, spending the first 4 nights of week-6 in the hospital. So for me it was a bit of a hellish ride from the end of week #1 thru week #6, but I turned the car around during week-6 in the hospital, and it all got easier for me the last couple weeks of rads. After treatment it'll take awhile to get back to where he wants to be, but it will happen if his tx does get rid of the C. I returned to work a month after my last rad, and in 4 months came to realize I could eat most anything I wanted. It is definitely worth it. 

    Best mindset is "Come what may," and keep it in the Positive in regards to all thoughts present and future:

    Believe

    kcass

  • phrannie51
    phrannie51 Member Posts: 4,716
    Kent Cass said:

    NJMOM

    Years ago someone entered in a post what they'd either read, or heard from a C Dr.- that H&N treatment is the 2nd-harshest C treatment there is, though the success rate is one of the best. Only treatment for rectal C is worse. One must understand that such is a generalized statement/opinion, because H&N treatment regimes differ, just as all of our Cs are different to whatever degree.

    SO, WHAT MATT SAID IS CORRECT- time to man-up and get tough. Your husband's C has only one plan, and that's to kill him. And, trust me, death due to H&N C is a very ugly death. I lost a Cousin to what turned out to be Esophageal, and words to describe his last few weeks would make any of us sick to hear. It's a no-gloves fight in the ring, and his opponent has only one, forementioned, thing in mind.

    That said- YES, it is worth it. I'm 6 years and almost 4 months post-tx. My tx regime was somewhat extreme, and my Chemo Dr put me on Morph at the start of week #2; and I was too sick to get any rads in weeks 5&6, spending the first 4 nights of week-6 in the hospital. So for me it was a bit of a hellish ride from the end of week #1 thru week #6, but I turned the car around during week-6 in the hospital, and it all got easier for me the last couple weeks of rads. After treatment it'll take awhile to get back to where he wants to be, but it will happen if his tx does get rid of the C. I returned to work a month after my last rad, and in 4 months came to realize I could eat most anything I wanted. It is definitely worth it. 

    Best mindset is "Come what may," and keep it in the Positive in regards to all thoughts present and future:

    Believe

    kcass

    What Kent said....

    image

  • debbiejeanne
    debbiejeanne Member Posts: 3,102 Member
    i had days after surgery

    i had days after surgery where i wondered if i made the right decision.  however, i think your husband will be glad for the decision he made once tx is over and he is on the road to recovery.  it is a rough road but as you see here, many have traveled that road and come out the other side.  He will too.  tell him to hang in there, the end of tx is in sight.

    God bless you both,

    dj

  • avisemi
    avisemi Member Posts: 172
    Like everyone said, it

    Like everyone said, it is!!!! 

    this forum is a blessing and i hope you receive as much support as we did here. Though, I understand what you mean. When my husband started treatment I read every single post here. I wanted to know what to expect and I wanted to get tips and helpful strategies. I got all that here. Though, there were many times when I had to STOP reading because the fear/worry/dread became overwhelming.  So as awesome as this forum is, don't visit us too often when you start feeling this way. 

    Also, your husband won't experience every single thing and side effect we mention here. We did not experience many of the things folks mention and experience others that were not mentioned that much. Hopefully he gets to be one of the folks that have an "easier" experience. 

  • NJMOM
    NJMOM Member Posts: 64

    my dad is a couple weeks ahead of your husband. (Week 4 starts Monday)-- judging from your past post, I think he's on the same treatment plan too-- 35 rads, 7 cisplatin infusions... He said the same thing, "I think the treatment is going to be worse than the disease" and I think he was probably right, but I also think he was referencing the pain he'll feel during treatment and the potential side effects after...  He knows the alternative has a much more grim outlook, and I know that when he gets across the finish line and healing begins, he won't regret having the opportunity to see his grandchildren grow up, and experience all the beautiful things coming up in his life Post-cancer. We are so thankful that this treatmeant has an end in sight, and a cure! and even though we know there's some rough days ahead, it's so nice to have hope for when treatment ends! just gotta stay hopeful and encouraged long enough to get there!! :) We're already noticing his lymph node shrinking Which we of course love to see! :) 

     

    good luck to you and your husband!! I'll be praying for y'all!! 

    Kimberly,
    Thanks for the kind

    Kimberly,

    Thanks for the kind words and the prayers! The only thing that keeps me going some days is the fact that they say it's curable! We know each other for 9 yrs but just got married Sept. 2014 and he told me it's because of the life we have that he's willing to put himself through all of this. We have so many things we want to do yet that that's what keeps us in the positive state of mind. I'm happy you're seeing progress in your dad's treatment and I wish him nothing but good health going forward. Love and prayers to your family as well!

  • NJMOM
    NJMOM Member Posts: 64

    Not for a second....

    in my recovery (or treatment) have I ever felt regret.....I'm kind of fond of being on this side of the dirt.  I learned to live one day at a time during treatment....never letting go of the fact that I only had to get through the day I was living....tomorrow would be here soon enough.  It's a rollercoaster ride, for sure.....but there are easier days mixed into the crappy ones.....

    Looking back on treatment is like looking back on anything else in our lives that was unpleasant....all we remember is that it sucked, we never remember the particulars....the details.....mother nature has a way of dulling things in our memories.

    So when you husband questions if it's worth it....remind him that treatment is only for 6 or 7 weeks....the alternative is forever.

    p

    You have such a positive

    You have such a positive attitude that I envy you in spite of the cancer! I have come to hate the word that seems to be on every third commercial!!! He is willing to endure the treatment with the hopes that there is a cure at the end of it. I know that the treatment may be over in 7 weeks but I think it's pretty clear from what everybody posts that the recovery exists past that time period. He's a strong man who up until now has never let adversity stop him in his tracks. I'm sure this is just a temporary bump in the road in our lives and I'm glad there's sites like this to vent and gather useful information as this is all uncharterted terroritory for both of us. Thanks for your words of encouragement!

  • NJMOM
    NJMOM Member Posts: 64
    Kent Cass said:

    NJMOM

    Years ago someone entered in a post what they'd either read, or heard from a C Dr.- that H&N treatment is the 2nd-harshest C treatment there is, though the success rate is one of the best. Only treatment for rectal C is worse. One must understand that such is a generalized statement/opinion, because H&N treatment regimes differ, just as all of our Cs are different to whatever degree.

    SO, WHAT MATT SAID IS CORRECT- time to man-up and get tough. Your husband's C has only one plan, and that's to kill him. And, trust me, death due to H&N C is a very ugly death. I lost a Cousin to what turned out to be Esophageal, and words to describe his last few weeks would make any of us sick to hear. It's a no-gloves fight in the ring, and his opponent has only one, forementioned, thing in mind.

    That said- YES, it is worth it. I'm 6 years and almost 4 months post-tx. My tx regime was somewhat extreme, and my Chemo Dr put me on Morph at the start of week #2; and I was too sick to get any rads in weeks 5&6, spending the first 4 nights of week-6 in the hospital. So for me it was a bit of a hellish ride from the end of week #1 thru week #6, but I turned the car around during week-6 in the hospital, and it all got easier for me the last couple weeks of rads. After treatment it'll take awhile to get back to where he wants to be, but it will happen if his tx does get rid of the C. I returned to work a month after my last rad, and in 4 months came to realize I could eat most anything I wanted. It is definitely worth it. 

    Best mindset is "Come what may," and keep it in the Positive in regards to all thoughts present and future:

    Believe

    kcass

    Thanks Kent!
    i think he's so

    Thanks Kent!

    i think he's so used to being able to fix anythin't and figure out a solution to any problem that he just can't get his mind around this problem. He is willing to go through everything they ask him to do to achieve the desired result but says he'll only do it once. I will do whatever it takes to make this as easy as I can on him and that's why I've come to this site to see what has helped others. It's been a  godsend so far. Thanks!

  • NJMOM
    NJMOM Member Posts: 64
    avisemi said:

    Like everyone said, it

    Like everyone said, it is!!!! 

    this forum is a blessing and i hope you receive as much support as we did here. Though, I understand what you mean. When my husband started treatment I read every single post here. I wanted to know what to expect and I wanted to get tips and helpful strategies. I got all that here. Though, there were many times when I had to STOP reading because the fear/worry/dread became overwhelming.  So as awesome as this forum is, don't visit us too often when you start feeling this way. 

    Also, your husband won't experience every single thing and side effect we mention here. We did not experience many of the things folks mention and experience others that were not mentioned that much. Hopefully he gets to be one of the folks that have an "easier" experience. 

    So true

    i find myself pouring over these posts and dreading the future!! It's so useful to know what has woreed for others and some of the things the doctors and nurses haven't told us. My husband is a strong, vibrant guy who usually can fix just about anything and anybody and I'm sure he'll do much better than I would! I hope for his sake that he doesn't experience many of the things I've read about but at least I'm aware of some of them and will know where to go if they do happen.  This is a "club" I never expected to be a part of but now that I am I will fight the good fight right by his side because there's no place I'd rather be! Hope your husband is doing well!

     

  • NJMOM
    NJMOM Member Posts: 64
    CivilMatt said:

    time to get tough

     

    NJMOM,

     

    No, I never regretted receiving treatment for cancer.  If you read enough  posts on here you would know that cancer is extremely cruel.

     

    In hindsight I wished my natural ability to combat foreign bodies inside me would have been stronger.   Going forward I feel that I receive much better nutrition for my self-defenses.  Without going overboard I now make a strong effort to eat healthier.

     

    I never thought of treatment as a hellish ride. To me it was more of  a ride on a stormy night  by myself.  I had a wonderful wife by my side, a great doctor, fantastic nurses, and the gentlest RAD technicians you could hope for, but it is still a ride you take alone.

     

    While I had issues with treatment side effects, they were all manageable.

     

    In the downhill side of treatment, life is good.

     

    Matt

     

    3y4m post

     

    Glad you are doing well!

    Glad you are doing well! Thanks for the words of encouragement!

  • NJMOM
    NJMOM Member Posts: 64
    Kent Cass said:

    NJMOM

    Years ago someone entered in a post what they'd either read, or heard from a C Dr.- that H&N treatment is the 2nd-harshest C treatment there is, though the success rate is one of the best. Only treatment for rectal C is worse. One must understand that such is a generalized statement/opinion, because H&N treatment regimes differ, just as all of our Cs are different to whatever degree.

    SO, WHAT MATT SAID IS CORRECT- time to man-up and get tough. Your husband's C has only one plan, and that's to kill him. And, trust me, death due to H&N C is a very ugly death. I lost a Cousin to what turned out to be Esophageal, and words to describe his last few weeks would make any of us sick to hear. It's a no-gloves fight in the ring, and his opponent has only one, forementioned, thing in mind.

    That said- YES, it is worth it. I'm 6 years and almost 4 months post-tx. My tx regime was somewhat extreme, and my Chemo Dr put me on Morph at the start of week #2; and I was too sick to get any rads in weeks 5&6, spending the first 4 nights of week-6 in the hospital. So for me it was a bit of a hellish ride from the end of week #1 thru week #6, but I turned the car around during week-6 in the hospital, and it all got easier for me the last couple weeks of rads. After treatment it'll take awhile to get back to where he wants to be, but it will happen if his tx does get rid of the C. I returned to work a month after my last rad, and in 4 months came to realize I could eat most anything I wanted. It is definitely worth it. 

    Best mindset is "Come what may," and keep it in the Positive in regards to all thoughts present and future:

    Believe

    kcass

    Positive thinking is all that

    Positive thinking is all that keeps me going! I refuse to believe anything other than that is curable and he will be cured! Not what I envisioned during our first year of marriage (2nd for both of us), but there is no place I'd rather be than by his side fighting the good fight. This disease could make or break us but in my heart I think it will make us stronger and more appreciative of each and every day which many of us take for granted. Glad you are doing well and thanks for the encouragement!

  • NJMOM
    NJMOM Member Posts: 64

    i had days after surgery

    i had days after surgery where i wondered if i made the right decision.  however, i think your husband will be glad for the decision he made once tx is over and he is on the road to recovery.  it is a rough road but as you see here, many have traveled that road and come out the other side.  He will too.  tell him to hang in there, the end of tx is in sight.

    God bless you both,

    dj

    Thanks DJ!
    Glad your husband

    Thanks DJ!

    Glad your husband is doing well. Thanks for the kind words. Life has turned completely upside down in the last 3 weeks but as I tell my husband when we lay down at night, this too shall pass! Since we have so much we want to do yet together in life, he said it wasn't an option to not try treatment. I was overjoyed to hear that because I was going to guilt him to death if he didn't want to at least try.  So glad I stumbled onto this site!

  • wmc
    wmc Member Posts: 1,804
    I have no regrets, just thankful.

    I never had to do chemo or radiation, I just had to have my voice [Larynx] removed and neck dissection on both sides. They cut me from ear to ear and removed 86 glands, and now I breath through my neck. If that was not done I would not be here to answer any questions. You see, only five persons [and that counts me and the docter] ever thought they would see me again and I would not make it. I can't smell so food is different and the odds of getting pneumonia is very high.

    Just two day's ago I read that Head & Neck is the second hardest and worse, treatment to go through. Only Leukemia was worse to go through.  We Have good survival rates in general; Thyroid is 97.7% Oral is 62% Laryngeal is 60.6% but esophageal is only at 17.3% but these are in general and not really that accurate. I had Laryngeal and they got it all and it never spread so my numbers go way up to about 75% to 80% maybe even higher.. These are in general as it did spread or had an unknown primary. So we don't really look at numbers, I look at the results that I wake up each day, and I would not other wise. They did put in a prothesis so I still can speak and It has been a big change in my life. For me, I am now a better person as I do see life much different. My wife and I just cellabrated our 40th anniversary and had to fight this beast for her, and my children.

    So much has to do with quality of life and how you accept it. I still have a good quality of life, so I'm good with my dicission. I hope this helps some. You can always ckick on my name and you go to my page and look at expressions, to get the full story. 

    Bill

  • TracyLynn72
    TracyLynn72 Member Posts: 839
    No regrets

    I had a very tough time.  The doctor said my body reacted as if it was allergic to radiation!  I had side effects on day TWO!  The awesome folks here gave me a good kick in the butt when I had given up and I pushed through.  It wasn't easy (the treatment was worse than the surgeries) but I am so thankful to be alive and well today.  I had some very low days but I found myself praying the whole day and that lifted my spirits tremendously!  Looking back at the awful times (I kept a journal) I would do it all again to get to where I am today! 

  • KB56
    KB56 Member Posts: 318 Member
    NJMOM Regrets

    From the moment I was diagnosed I came out swinging and i have to admit towards the end of treatment I was at the point I didn't think I could take any more but that was more because I knew I was at the end of the chemo/radiation and that was how many treatments i was prepared to take.

    Like many on the site I knew my long term prospect was good once I finished treatment and the survival rate was pretty high.  I just had to get through the chemo/radiation and it was rough but doable and I had a friend who had gone through something similar (like the many on the site but I didn't find this site until later).  

    the "hellish ride" as you put it is exactly that... about as tough of a ride as he/you will ever take but now I'm two years out and NED as of June of this year, it was absolutely worth every second of it.   most of it now is a distant memory and I am pretty much back to where I was before I started.  A couple of little side effects but nothing I can't live with and do basically whatever I want.  I still have a problem eating spicy food and a little dry mouth at night but I am alive and well and really celebrating my new (and first) 5 month old granddauther.

    It was absolutely worth every second of misery to be where I am today.   Looking back, the treatment went quick and is but a short blip in the road of life.  going through it at the time it just drug on forever but no regrets.

    he can do this... he (and you) have to get mentally prepared for some very rough times but it will pass fast and then the body can start to heal.

    Stay strong and fight hard!  It is definitely worth it!

    All the best,

    Keith

  • NJMOM
    NJMOM Member Posts: 64
    KB56 said:

    NJMOM Regrets

    From the moment I was diagnosed I came out swinging and i have to admit towards the end of treatment I was at the point I didn't think I could take any more but that was more because I knew I was at the end of the chemo/radiation and that was how many treatments i was prepared to take.

    Like many on the site I knew my long term prospect was good once I finished treatment and the survival rate was pretty high.  I just had to get through the chemo/radiation and it was rough but doable and I had a friend who had gone through something similar (like the many on the site but I didn't find this site until later).  

    the "hellish ride" as you put it is exactly that... about as tough of a ride as he/you will ever take but now I'm two years out and NED as of June of this year, it was absolutely worth every second of it.   most of it now is a distant memory and I am pretty much back to where I was before I started.  A couple of little side effects but nothing I can't live with and do basically whatever I want.  I still have a problem eating spicy food and a little dry mouth at night but I am alive and well and really celebrating my new (and first) 5 month old granddauther.

    It was absolutely worth every second of misery to be where I am today.   Looking back, the treatment went quick and is but a short blip in the road of life.  going through it at the time it just drug on forever but no regrets.

    he can do this... he (and you) have to get mentally prepared for some very rough times but it will pass fast and then the body can start to heal.

    Stay strong and fight hard!  It is definitely worth it!

    All the best,

    Keith

    I'm thinking..

    I'm thinking this is going to be just a small bump in the road but one we must experience. I think the hardest part of all of this, for me, will be watching the man I love suffer and not be the rock he's always been for me. It's my turn to step up my game and be there when he needs me and even when he doesn't want my to be there. Since we both have so many things we want to do together in life left to do, not treating this was never an option. However, he has already told me that if the proposed plan doesn't pan out the first time, he probably won't go through it all again, so fingers crossed it works the first time around! Glad to hear you're doing well, Keith!