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Posts: 3
Joined: Mar 2004

I was diagnosed with an Anaplastic Astrocytoma last June. I had surgery, radiation, and just completed a year of chemo (Temodar). I have even recently been able to completely decrease the level of Dilantin from a high of 7 to 0 pills a day. I do still take Topomax and Tegrotal(?) to control seizures. So far all my MRI's look good.

You would think I would be happy. Here these last couple of weeks, I have increasingly becoming angrier. It began around the same time I found out I was finished with chemo and the same time I let out for summer break. I am a school teacher. My family thinks I should be excited. I should be but all I can think about is when is this tumour going to reuccur. My behavior is changing towards the people I love. Yet most of the time I don't care and I don't want them around. I can't shake off this real PISSED off feeling. Funny how a whole year later I feel this way. Up to this point my attitude has been great. Have any of you had similar feelings?
Is this depression? Medicines? Any suggestions? I know your not doctors I just wanted someone elses opinion that has dealt with brain cancer personally.

Posts: 7
Joined: Apr 2004

Hi myall,
I have an astrocytoma/glioma interntwined (sp) within my brainstem. I have had similar feelings at times. I for the longest time I distanced myself from my loved ones not to burden them. I have learned a lot through my battle. Because of my husband and me not seeing alot of what I was doing or acting like. I had psyc. testing it revealed that my problems were and are probably organic and possibly from changes in the brain whatever that means. Doctors took the good stuff out. no just joking. I am not on medication today but with stress it usually gets worst my problem is I do not know my own bodies limits. Which will do weird things to your body. I have learned that something as simple as driving for twenty minutes will totally run my body down. Keep a journal to see and remember when these feelings or things are happening and get help to cope if you need. Medication for me will not cure my problem. I also have bad processing and short term memory problems. Get involved in a guilda (sp) group in your town. Talk to people for me I am learning alot of new things about me all over again. I am reteaching my brain just it takes longer. Example: Sometimes Ihave to read thing over and over again before I understand or my brain processes it. It can be frustrating but Life is importsnt to me so I am up for the challenge. I thank the lord for helping my husband tolerate me so long. Good luck and I hope this helps somehow. God Bless

chiligrl's picture
Posts: 20
Joined: Mar 2004

I was diagnosed with a Grade II oligo in Oct. Had 2 surgeries,chemo and rads, finished in Feb. Most of the time, I do well...feel ok and am in a great mood...but then I have weeks where I am just depressed and mad at the freaking world. Paxil CR has been a big help to me. I am currently trying to wean myself from that...and once again, I am in a pissy mood. Can't stop thinking about recurrence.
So I think that what you and I are going thru is perfectly normal!! It is a BIG deal to have brain cancer or any cancer....Just do the best you can and listen to your body..rest when your body says it needs rest..and treat yourself really well. But try to remember that your loved ones have been thru hell as well!
Good luck to ya!

Posts: 6
Joined: Jul 2004

I know how you feel...brain cancer is a totally life changing thing and it can really mess with one's emotions. I know from experience, believe me! My big thing that makes me angry is that I can't drive (my main lingering issue is that I have no feeling in my right foot and can't feel the pedals. Also, the radiation caused some swelling in my optic nerves - which they say will take months to ease up - so I'd be a menace driving). I have to rely on my boyfriend to drive me everywhere and it makes me feel helpless and childish. Being on all the anti-swelling meds made me gain weight and I was pissed about that too. Above all else, I'm pissed that I had to get cancer when there are criminals and terrorists who might actually deserve to be sick, and I get it when I've lived a life being a decent person. It's just not "fair".

So yeah, it's natural to be depressed. I have to remind myself every day that I'm alive and feeling better instead of focusing on my nerve-damaged foot, my lack of hair or the disruption to my life that this damn Glio has been. It's hard, and I have my days when I cry my eyes out, but you gotta give it all you have to survive and be happy. There are counselors associated with most hospitals who speciaize in cancer patients, you might want to give one a try if you're really feeling like hell.

dblitz's picture
Posts: 1
Joined: Jul 2004

BOY do I know the feeling. I have been incredibly lucky with my cancer, but I am still really pissed off sometimes. I was a professional musician, and the surgery paralyzed my hand. Oh man, it is like living death. Otherwise, I am healthy as a horse. I feel like million bucks. I got mad at God over this. Just plain stupid on my part. I sure am tired of advice, though. I won't discuss my paralysis with most people.
Brain injuries cause this crap to fire off in our heads, I'm told.
May God Bless you with peace and happiness.


Posts: 1
Joined: Feb 2004

Hi Myall. How are you doing? My husband, Rob, was diagnosed with an Oligoastrocytoma January of 03. He gets VERY angry when he can't do things he used to do. He is only 33, and so I know it's tough on him. (By the way - I am a school teacher, too.) He uses meditation and he reads books to help his attitude. The two I highly recommend are: When Bad Things Happen To Good People and The Anatomy of Hope. GREAT for helping with depression.

email me if you get a chance

God Bless!

Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 2004

Hi. I'm glad I read what you wrote about anger because i'm having a real problem with it. i don't have cancer (yet) but the person i love most in the world does and i'm getting angier and angier too. I feel kind of guilty, especially when i get angry at God, but feelings are just feelings. my friend with cancer is a therapist and she says for us to not judge our emotions. once we start judging our emotions things can get really bad for us emotionally. She says "You are not your emotion." She says, "I'm good, even if my situation's bad." you've been thru a lot and maybe you didn't get to express all your anger before now. hang in there. you're ok.

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