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Post treatment effects

Posts: 20
Joined: May 2003

Well today I just wanted to talk to some ladies that I think can relate. It will be two years in October since my treatments, I had radiation and chemo. Anywho, recently some feelings have occurred that I havent had to deal with yet. First, a lady in my church was Dx about 6 months after I was and had the same treatments. Well she recently passed away this week. This is the first person I have known to die from cervical cancer. Sure I have heard the statistics, I heard of one person passing that I didnt know, only through a friend. I know this may sound crazy, but I guess the best way to say how I feel, is I realize people really do die from cervical cancer. I know that may sound crazy. I guess I feel to the general public, cervical cancer always seems to be the "treatable" cancer, not as serious. Such as breast cancer, etc. I have strong faith and I feel that is why I have not felt I may not make it. Maybe I just never dealt with the reality of what I went and are going through. Since I found out hers returned every ache and pain scares me now. Nevertheless, thank goodness for the good Lord, who has been my rock and support during all of this.
Next, I can no longer have children as a result of the treatments as I'm sure you're aware.
And yesterday my sister-in-law announced their pregnancy. I'm so depressed, and feel so guilty feel so. I have been blessed with two children and I know I shouldnt feel this way, but that is just how I feel right now. You always want what you cant have it seems. For me, being able to have children has always made me feel like a complete woman. And the feeling of not being able to anymore is just at its "Peak" with me right now. Also on a more personal note, on top of that, intercourse is painful. My husband is really understanding and supportive. But I guess I feel, not only can't I have children, I have "lost" that also and I'm not even 30 yet. Well, I guess I'll end my pity party here. I just was feeling all these things today and it seemed talking to others that havent been through this just dont get it. I just wanted to talk to ones that would get it. I just needed to get that out.
Take care and God bless!

nkern's picture
Posts: 37
Joined: Apr 2003

What an emotional week you have had. It is really scary to think that people actually do die from cervical cancer. I have been telling my friends and family that hardly no one dies from it, (partly to protect them, partly to try to convince me??)but when reality slaps you in the face it is hard to ignore it. I read some brilliant advice actually on this website regarding aches and pains. Someone wrote, "how would you have reacted to the aches and pains before cancer?" I am trying to get myself to think this way.

As for the pregnancy, I can definetly relate. My 42 year old brother and his 45 year old girlfriend just had the first baby girl in our family. My mom had always said that I would be the one to have the girl. I am fortunate to have one son who is 15. I was 18 when I had him and did the whole single parent thing. I am now in a totally loving and supportive relationship and hadn't thought of more kids until someone told me I couldn't have them due to needing a hysterectomy. I am not sure what I am actully mourning... the loss of my mother's dream for me to have the baby girl or the happy pregnancy that I never had. Who knows... I just say it's the chocolate theory. I can go for days without eating chocolate until someone tells me I can't have it and then all I want is chocolate. I do know one thing that I hold very tightly to, the fact that I have been given a chance to watch my child grow into an adult and through life. I wouldn't trade that for another child or even a chance at another child. Hang in there the feelings are like rainstorms. Some days not a cloud insight other days can be very drizzly (is that a word) and then about once a month an overwhelming downpour happens. I also hold very strongly to the fact that it will get better especially if we keep talking about our feelings. Take care.

Posts: 6
Joined: Jul 2003

I can relate to much of what you're going thru...many things I've been experiencing lately have been very similar to you.

I was dx'd 18 months ago at age 37; completed my treatments a year ago in May.

I try not to dwell on the fact that this disease could prove fatal. Maybe it's a kind of denial, but sometimes it's the only way to get thru the day. But every now and then real life kind of jumps up and makes me realize the truth.

The feelings do seem to come in waves. Try to ride it out...it will get better. We need to remember that MANY women DO survive this disease long-term.

Please don't feel guilty about the pregnancy issue. We have lost something very precious in that we can no longer have children; I think we need to let ourselves grieve a little. My husband and I are very fortunate in that we have one child; he was four when I was diagnosed. My sister is pregnant with her 2nd child, and it does really make me feel sad at times. She is my best friend as well as my sister, and I am very happy for her, but sometimes it does start to get to me.

I agree with nkern....it does help to talk about our feelings. We all need to know that we are not alone in this.

God bless...you are in my prayers.

Posts: 16
Joined: May 2003

Hello, I too have pity parties, for most ofthe same reasons you have mentioned. I was dx 9/02 and had rad hyst with 20+ lymph nodes removed (all clean) in 12/02. I have had 2 dr visits since. I too feel that any ache or pain spins me around and fear creeps back in. I think my biggest worry is that it is there and I don't know it. It may sound funny, but I made it a month not visiting the doctor for something! I hate it and I guess because we are told how treatable it is. You feel foolish for worrying. But its still cancer and its still fearful. Someone on this website gave me the best advice for those ache and pain times that I try to repeat to myself to calm down and think rationally--- What did you do before "Cancer"? If my leg ached, I waited. It usually got better! If not, I went to the doctor, and not because I thought I had cancer! I hope that helps you. If not you can talk to me, I can totally relate.

About the children, I thought I would have a hard time with that, but I actually don't. I have been blessed with 5 beautiful children (19, 16, 13, 3, 2) They give me so much joy. But they are my limit. I really didn't want any more and so I think it was easier for me. I work with someone that says it was hardest at OB visits when she saw pregnant women. Maybe take a picture of your kids with you to help you remember the joy. God Bless You!

Posts: 20
Joined: May 2003

I cant begin to thank you all enough for all of your kind words of understanding and support. You all truly touched me. I've repeated many of your encouraging words in my mind over the past couple of days. From the "chocolate theory", not feeling guilty to how would I have handled that ache before cancer.. Again, thank you so much ladies. Keep in touch! Have a blessed day! :)

Posts: 3
Joined: Sep 2003

Stop for a second and think of what you do have. For starters, you have your glorious life and it sounds like you have a wonderful husband and family. Don't waste time dwelling on what you don't have-revel in what you do have. This is what cancer gives to you-not takes from you! Have you asked your doctor about vaginal estrogen cream for intercourse pain? I too had problems in that dept. but once I used the cream it seemed to lessen the discomfort. Radiation dries out the cells and the cream rehydrates them. I hope this helps. GOD BLESS. :.}

Posts: 20
Joined: May 2003

Yes like you said, cancer makes you thankful for all your many blessings. Each day I have to give thanks. God gets us through those days in the valleys and makes the view from the top that much better. He is an awesome mighty God! Praise be His name, Sweet Jesus:)
Thank you for sharing your advice about the cream. My doctor once mentioned this, I just didnt want to use creams. However if it will help I'll address this with him. I go this week.
Thank you again, take care!

Posts: 3
Joined: Apr 2003

Don't let anyone fool you into beleiving that you are wrong for feeling sad, depressed, remorseful, grief-stricken or any other emotions that you go through. One thing you do need to keep in mind however is to keep a positive attitude. It is normal to be down and out at times but keeping a good outlook will help you tremendously in getting through all of this. Please know how blessed you are that you actually had children before your diagnosis. I am 23 and have been battling cervical cancer for 4 years. I do not have any children and doctors say I will proabably never be able to conceive due to all of my surgeries and procedures. Cancer is just another one of lifes hurdles....but this too shall pass. Good luck!

Posts: 12
Joined: Mar 2004

praise god it is only through him that i did make it through all the surgeries and treatments and he put a peace over my heart 99%of the time and now my first pap is neg. and yours will me too keep the faith

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