11 years later, terrified of recurrance


Hi Everyone,

I'm new here and desperately seeking some support.  Life has thrown a curve ball or two and suddenly I find that my anxiety and depression over recurrance are absolutely crushing to the point I can hardly function.  I've read some of the conversations here and feel a slight sense of comfort, so I'm really hoping this will be a good place to find support.  Here's my story.

2007, 27 y/o - diagnosed Hodkins IIB; 12 sessions of ABVD (6 months) but no radiation; last chemo on Feb. 14, 2008.  No signs of cancer and considered to be in remission.

In 2009 I developed ITP (thrombocytopenia) that lasted for a couple of months - platelet infusions, IVG and one dose of a new trial drug (don't recall the name) and my platelet levels returned to normal.

I've been incredibly lucky to not have any recurrances or any other after-effects from treatment.  Did the usual checkups for 5 years out until my new local oncologist told me that I didn't need anymore checkups because my chances of getting cancer again were the same as anyone else's.  Is this true?  From what I'm reading, my oncologist might be full of you know what...

It took a while for me to get back to "living life".  I still struggle with this regularly.  I got married in 2014 at 33 years old.  Found out I was pregnant with my first and only child in 2017.  Gave birth to said child (Tobias, now 21 months old) in March of 2018.  I'm currently 38, a bit overweight, don't exercise enough, being treated for T2 diabetes.  Marriage is a bit rocky due to depression for both myself and my spouse.  Kiddo is happy and healthy.  My anxiety started to creep up on me when I realized that I actually have a child now.  What if I get sick again?

The big reality check for me, though, was my mom being diagnosed with small cell lung cancer two months ago.  The outlook isn't good (rarely is for sclc).  I spent hours online researching and looking for facts and treatment options for her and then I happened upon all of the information about secondary cancers after hodgkin's and the increased risks.  I don't know how much of it is actually fact or what really applies to me or doesn't which just makes me more anxious.  

I feel completely alone.  I can't seem to find a medical professional that doesn't look at me like I'm crazy or make me feel like I'm crazy when I say I'm worried about a symptom I'm having that's unusual.  I'm terrified of leaving my little one, of getting sick again and missing out on watching him grow up.  It's been a horrible struggle to push through post partum depression and other issues.  I'm still nursing him so I'm not willing to take any meds to help with my anxiety or depression.  I can't seem to find any other support groups online, at least not legit groups.  I live in the middle of Wisconsin and have very little support here.  I wish I could find someone to talk to that understands, that can maybe relate a little or offer some words of encouragement that don't seem empty because of a lack of understanding.  And am I crazy for being worried about recurrance after 11 years?  

Sorry for the wall of text here...I have the jitters from the adrenaline rush I've been on for the last hour or so and I just started typing.  I know there are no concrete answers, no magic pills or cures...I know I should be eating better, exercising more, making more memories...  I just feel so tired, so defeated, even though I know in the back of my mind that I've been so lucky, so blessed, to have made it this far!  

It was harder than I thought it would be to write all of this..

Thank you for taking the time to read this!  



  • ShadyGuy
    ShadyGuy Member Posts: 913 Member
    My non-professional opinion -

    My non-professional opinion - your situation has more to do with your current emotional state than it does with cancer. Please seek professional help. You wil not find what you need here.

  • lindary
    lindary Member Posts: 711 Member

    Sorry for you mom's diagnosis. We watched one of my husband's brother fade away and die from small cell lung cancer. It is hard. 

    Being worried about your cancer coming back is something all surviors go thorugh at one time of another. Several times I mentioned something to my oncologist only to have her tell me everything was ok. Then in Oct when I saw her she was concered about my having 2 bowel blockages in the year and had me get a scan. Her and my GP both said the scan showed nothing. Funny thing is,I wasn't worried.

    I agree with ShadyGuy that you need to talk to someone who can help you get a handle everything.

  • po18guy
    po18guy Member Posts: 1,487 Member
    I'm with Shady

    Anxiety is the epidemic of our age. 1 in 5 suffer from some form of it. That is 64 million in the US. If there is no medical evidence of a recurrence, then you are quite possibly suffering from anxiety. The gold stadard in anxiety treatment is drug-free and may even be done over ther phone! It is called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and is highly successful. Do ask doctor about it.