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never ending fear

Posts: 16
Joined: Feb 2004

My fear is so deep I can hardly breathe. It doesn't even register as the emotion of fear it is so deep. Will it stop? I feel as if I am still waiting for the other shoe to drop. I did my surgery and have gone on with my life; I work and I play but I always feel as if something is "not quite right." I got tremendous praise for my bravery and I have tremendous support from my family and many friends. I just feel so alone all the time. As if I am in my own little world. A surreal world that threw cancer my way, so I immediately did what I was told to do, and just like that it's over. Just that fast, it seems. I imagine that is what is bothering me to some extent. What happened??? Did I really have cancer and, more importantly, is it really gone? The solitude is what bothers me; after 6 months people are done talking about it. You seem fine, so, in their minds, it's all over. I guess I might be the same way if I weren't the one who had cancer! I guess we can never again let our guard down, eh? I have seen my Mom survive 3 seperate cancers; she is my hero. She is 80; I am 48. I just wondered if anyone else felt even remotely the same way that I do. Thanks for listening.

Posts: 31
Joined: Feb 2004

I hear you. I am scared all the time. I have had my chemo, and I work and I play, but every pain I have, I wonder "Is it back?" I live in constant fear of recurrence. This is a quite natural feeling, according to others I've spoken to. You have to learn to put your fear on the back burner, however. You can't let it dominate you. I wonder if it would be a good thing for you to find a discussion board where they discuss your type of cancer? I had rectal cancer and I have joined the colorectal discussion board--have found some wonderful people to talk to and have gotten some positive feedback, and I don't feel quite so isolated. Please think about it, and in the meantime, you're a survivor--don't forget that. God bless you.


Watercolor's picture
Posts: 47
Joined: Feb 2004

Vix, You said it so well. I wish I had your gift for words. We never know for sure if we are cured. And even if we are cured of this cancer, we now are very aware that we are susceptible to any dreaded disease / illness. Until cancer "touches" you personally, you just never realize that it can. You just have never thought of the possibility. It has always been someone else.

Have you heard of the Cancer Hope Network (www.cancerhopenetwork.org)? They can connect you via phone with someone who has experienced the same type of cancer and had the same treatment you experienced. I made use of their service and was happy I did.

Also, if you have a gyn cancer, I can recommend a very active message board. The web site is Hyster Sisters (www.hystersister.com). It's a group of message boards related to hysterectomy surgery. One of the boards is Cancer Concerns. Very supportive and knowledgeable women there who have been through it. (I did not have gyn cancer.)

Mary D.

Posts: 17
Joined: May 2003

hi Vix, I here where you are coming from i finishedchemo. 3 years ago in december and it still is a never ending battle. I belong to a group at Delphi Forums called Breast cancer survivors and friends and there are many groups out there you can join and they have helped me tremendously.Good Luck honey11 HANG IN THERE

Posts: 86
Joined: Mar 2004

Vix: You're right about everyone around you thinking you're "fine" and back to "normal" after your treatments -- and you aren't feeling normal at all. That's what is good about support groups -- they let you talk about your fears and concerns without offending or scarring (sp?) (scare) your loved ones. It lets you discuss things that are off limits with some people or that someone that hasn't had cancer just doesn't understand. I have since been diagnosed with melanoma, so I relate to the fear of having the "other shoe drop". After the initial shock and disbelief of another cancer diagnosis, you get on with treatments and fight back again. Your Mom is a hero!!! (a book to read about someone having gone through several cancers is: "No Such Thing As A Bad Day" by Hamilton Jordan --President Carter's Chief of Staff). Knowing others have the same concerns help you feel that you're not alone. Learning something new about the disease that affects you helps empower you...have a great week.

Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2004

My husband has melanoma and I feel like we are on an emotional roller coaster. I don't think people get it,what it does to change your life in a split second. One minute people are here for you and then it's all forgotten. The fear stays with you every minute of the day.

Posts: 5
Joined: Mar 2004

hey vix...I totally understand what you're saying. I survived breast cancer..this is my 17th year. The first few weeks and months, everybody was there to hold my hand and tell me everything would be OK. I KNEW it would. I wasn't going to let it beat me. And, just as with you, slowly but surely the visits and phone calls happened less frequently. And, yes, everytime we experience a new or different pain, or feeling, we're just sure "it's" back. I'm not sure how, but eventually you realize you have 2 choices. You can allow yourself to be overwhelmed with the disease or you can put your boxing gloves on and fight it with everything you've got. If you'd like to talk more, I'd love to hear from you.
Diane Wininger

Posts: 5
Joined: Aug 2005

I'm afraid you won't see this message because it has been so long since you wrote it. But, to be honest, you are not the only one feeling this way. I think it's a good day if I don't think about it too much - better yet- not at all. I, too, have melanoma. It is my second bout with the big C. The first one was breast cancer when I was 34 with a five year old son. I did all the empty glass things you could imagine until a very good friend of mine said even if you were to die next week look what you're doing today. She was right. I had to enjoy what I had and along the way a strange thing happened. I got better and my attitude got better. It's like if you look for sunshine you'll find it but then if you look for clouds you'll certainly find those too. I choose sunshine and rainbows. Now I'm faced with another challenge stage IV melanoma. I hope my positive attitude will carry me through this one too. It's just those nagging little voices that still come in the night. I go to research molecular MDs and sometimes too much info is not so great. As for me, thanks for listening

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