Run or do I Stay?

4everblessed Member Posts: 1
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
I was diagnosed with invasive ductal carcinoma of right breast Dec 29, 06, 3 days before my 55th birthday. I did not have health insurance and went through a state breast cancer screening program that financed the process and now I am eligible to have all my future medical expenses (surgery and treatments, etc) covered as well. THANK YOU JESUS. All I have been told thus far other than the type is that the cancer is grade #3, (which they said means it is fairly active and the most aggressive) and that it has not invaded the blood vessels or lymphatic system. I am scheduled for a consultation with a surgeon/oncologist Jan 30th. I am concerned whether this cancer is spreading while I wait all this time for a prognosis and treatment plan. I found you ladies on my own, you are my very first cancer support group and I am so grateful and thankful to have found you to not only hear my voice but who understands just what I am going through. I have been doing research on and off since I found the lump in early November and have a basic knowledge of treatment options and their side effects. In fact I am overwhelmed with all the info out there and it scares me not knowing exactly what stage I am up against. To make matters worse I went to the hospital website where I will be having surgery and treatment and found absolutely nothing. There was a bit on the history and a paragraph or two about the oncology dept, no links, support, nothing. So I paid a visit to the hospital over the weekend, only to find it to be a small, very old but clean facility and of course the oncology dept was closed. As a result, in walks fear with lots of questions and doubt about the quality of care, treatment, and technology that this facility has to offer.
One day I want to RUN to my home state where there are two major cancer hospitals with state-of-the-art technology. I have lots of family (mother, sons, siblings and more) and friends that would love for me to be home and supply care giving, moral and spiritual support. But there are some issues to consider such as living arrangements. I can either sleep on a family member sofa bed or go back to a mentally, unhealthy relationship and hope it would change.The man would welcome me with open arms and provide all the material comforts of home but lacking the emotional and spiritual support.
On the flip side, there are days when it feels more important to STAY here (another state) with my daughter and the church that provides me with the spiritual comfort, strength, and support I will need to make it through this storm. I am growing so much more spiritually here than I ever would at home. I realize I have to stop the flip- flopping and make a decision and stick with it. I guess I worry because I have too much time on my hands. Writing and sharing my feelings with you has already helped me tremendously. I know I have a great deal of other major decisions to make in the near future and will need your advice, opinions, support and prayers then also.
Thank you for listening.


  • Susan956
    Susan956 Member Posts: 510
    Only you can make the right decisions for you. Part of your problem is that you still don't know the level of treatment that you will need. If you are lucky and it is just a lumpectomy with radiation, then the level of care will not be substantial. I missed about 1 week of work for the lumpectomy and worked the whole time I had radiation. But if you need a mastdectomy and or Chemo(which I had) then it is much harder and take much longer. I was in treatment for almost 1 year since my cancer was Her2+. Very doable as many of us know but harder and a lot longer.

    The only advice that I can give you is that if your relationship was mentally abusive before, I would not expect for cancer to help it. It might... but unlikely. Only you can judge the level of issue there.

    As for the quality of care issue, you will have to weigh where you believe you can get the best care. If you are Stage 1 or 2, then the care at most locations will probably be fine. But if you are Stage 3 or 4... I would want to go to one of the best Cancer Centers if you can get them to take you without insurance.

    I was blessed to have wonderful insurance, which I never appropriately appreciated until this beast took a swing at me. I am sure there are others here who have had to deal with the insurance issues, I just can't help you there.

    If you need chemo, you are going to need a place where you can rest in peace. There will be days when you may not really feel like getting out of bed barely and you will need a place where you can just do what feels right for you. So you will have to weigh that with your other issues.

    I don't think I have helped. But if nothing else I will include you in my thoughts and prayers.

    Take Care... God Bless...

  • mssue
    mssue Member Posts: 242
    Well I am glad U have a support system spiritually,mentally and physically.We are here when ever U need us.Grade 3 is very serious,is it possible to call the clinic back and ask what stage the cancer is?The worst they could say is no,it can give a little peace of mind knowing what U are dealing with anyway.You are worried about the facility inwhich you are to have treatments...I chose the smaller hospital here in town rather than going to Duke or such.I did so though as a matter of convience plus the Doctor that treated me came from Duke.The treatment regiment would have been the same either way,here it was just more personal.
    I do think it would depend on the rest of your information and what would most benefit U.They may not be set up to facilitate your needs.
    You are so smart,sounds like U already have most of your ducks in a row.Although you do have a big decision left to make.Dig down deep to find the answers you seek.In the worst case senario where will you be better off?No one can answer that for you honey.You do need to make sure where ever you go you have the physical support,cause the treatments have been known to knock one off their feet,literally.Having mental and emotional support is very important as well either in person,over the phone or on the net.They are important for your recovery.
    Keep us updated-or just come in and vent whatever U need.You'll be in my thoughts and prayers.

    Big Hugs,
  • KathiM
    KathiM Member Posts: 8,028 Member
    Wow! What a tough decision! Although, I must agree with Susan, once an abusive relationship, always abusive. Even your cancer could be used against you.

    The MOST important thing is YOUR feelings. You will need alot of emotional support, and also physical support (transportation to and from chemo, should you have it, etc). You need to be sure that you get the BEST treatment available....cancer is a sneeky demon!

    Is the state program only valid in that state? Cancer treatments can be very expensive, and you will also be 'red lined' for 5 years from getting other insurance, or pay a WHOPPING amount.

    Yeah, support is hard to find. WE all are here, and have met and battled the beast at least once. So, we collectively have alot of experience under our belt.

    I was dx with stage II breast cancer, 8/05. I was 50 years young. The sentinel nodes were involved, so as well as a lumpectomy to remove the cancer, I had chemotherapy followed by radiation. My treatment finished June, 2006. I am still cancer free, which is a minor miracle, since 6 months before the breast cancer, I finished treatment for colon cancer.

    Consider yourself family here, but make decisions based on being as kind to yourself as possible, you need all your energy to fight the cancer, not worry about what is going on around you!

    Hugs, Kathi
    JUSTAWORD Member Posts: 18
    I agree with the other ladies this is a tough decision. but i thought you said you had children that you could stay with. If you feel at home there and if they are supportive and won't mind that there will be days that all you want to do is sleep or be left alone (that is if you have chemo) where their will be days that they truly need to leave you alone (haha) (pms mutiplied by 1000) then i would go with the kids. I think that once you find out what the details of your cancer and stage and treatment will help make your decision much easier. forget the bad relationship, you need to have a clear mind, to make sound decisions and healthy thoughts thru out this process. we all need to remember this is a fight for our lives so unhealthy things do not have a place in this arena. once the hospital opens make sure you take your daughter with you, or a tape recording and ask all your questions, if they are not answered ask again, do not take "no" for answer. go on line for some questions to ask when you go. how long are the treatments, what are you options. etc. then make some phone calls to the places out of town and ask those same questions and wherever you feel most comfortable, maybe that will help you make the best decision.

    my heart and prayers go out to you and your family and i know that GOD will point you in the right direction.

    just a word.
  • LesleyH
    LesleyH Member Posts: 370
    I'm so sorry that you have joined us and have to make these dreadful decisions. I am going to take a more extreme view here because I was diagnosed (eventually) in a small town and moved to a major center for treatment. I firmly believe that the move saved my life. I think that if it is possible every women should always undergo treatment at a major breast center. I left all my friends and support system to do this and have no regrets.

    Good luck with your decision.


  • babs49242
    babs49242 Member Posts: 193
    LesleyH said:

    I'm so sorry that you have joined us and have to make these dreadful decisions. I am going to take a more extreme view here because I was diagnosed (eventually) in a small town and moved to a major center for treatment. I firmly believe that the move saved my life. I think that if it is possible every women should always undergo treatment at a major breast center. I left all my friends and support system to do this and have no regrets.

    Good luck with your decision.



    Sorry to hear you have joined this group. BUT these women are WONDERFUL,and very supportive.
    I ,too,was dx in a small doctors were affilated with a well known clinic. I had the best care and my whole entourage was great. only you can decided what is good for you.
    this is a great site. another good group is a yahoo group called 4bcsurvivors,which I belong to.
    you are in my prayers & thoughts....take someone with you when you go to the doctors...extra ears are good to have....