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Re: Question...when do we start counting survivorship?

Treecy1106's picture
Posts: 159
Joined: Apr 2011

Is it the day we have the surgery...or the day chemo ends???? I am counting it from the day I had my mastectomy....am I wrong???

Posts: 132
Joined: Dec 2010

I think you're right. That's how I'm counting it, from the day it was surgically removed.

Posts: 6541
Joined: Oct 2010

I think we all have our own date or procedure. I did the big happy dance my last day of radiation (june 298,08) only date I remember...with all the dates.(diagnosis, surgery etc)


Posts: 1191
Joined: Dec 2010

For being a "sort of" survivor, I count back to when I had a green discharge from my breast and the surgeon did nothing about it, and was even quite rude.
But as I look back now, beyond that point to when I found the lump, I see myself as a survivor then,too.
I think if you are still living, even if you have cancer, you are a survivor until you pass away, whether it be cancer or something else.
After I got my diagnoses and started coming to different discussion boards/chatrooms for cancer, I called myself a survivor even though I hadn't had any surgery, yet. As long as I was alive, I was and am a survivor.
I count that I am NED since the moment my BMX ended and the cancer was removed.
Everyone has their own version of being a survivor. I have several times in my life. I do prefer that I am in remission or NED instead of a survivor. I had DCIS and in my mind, even though it is cancer, it was something nasty removed.
What I DO consider myself a survivor of is the bilateral mastectomy and node dissection I had which caused Post Mastectomy Pain Syndrome (severe pain from nerve damage in the sentinel node removal) and LE.

However YOU think of it, you can't be wrong. You are a survivor when you say you are.

linpsu's picture
Posts: 747
Joined: Mar 2010

Please tell me about your post mast. pain syndrome. I have severe pain going down my arm on my mastectomy side and no dr. will admit that it came from surgery or node removal. No dr. can find anything wrong based on tests, but the pain is excruciating.

SIROD's picture
Posts: 2199
Joined: Jun 2010

I sort of like the word thriver over survivor. The way the word survivor is meant on breast cancer discussion boards, I won't survive this disease. However, my recent ct scan shows stable and I do believe for this moment in time I am a thriver.

Wishing you well in your journey and may you always be a thriver.



Megan M's picture
Megan M
Posts: 3001
Joined: Dec 2009

I call myself a survivor, but, I don't actually celebrate any date. The only one that that really sticks out is the day I was told I had bc.

We are all survivors!

VickiSam's picture
Posts: 9080
Joined: Aug 2009

my breast cancer Specialist, and Oncologist after my bilateral mastectomy that
I had no evidence of disease -- January 17th, 2010.

I endured several surgeries, and Herceptin for a year thereafter.

My Survivor/Thriving day is 1-17-2010 - my new re-birth day.

Vicki Sam

abrub's picture
Posts: 1835
Joined: Mar 2010

Surgery for a "routine" hysterectomy found an unexpected tumor on my ovary - a met from an unknown appendix cancer. April 6, 2007 will stick in my mind as the first day of the rest of my life.

CypressCynthia's picture
Posts: 4014
Joined: Oct 2009

I would count it from either day of mastectomy, lumpectomy or initiation of treatment. My official date is February 18, 1987-the day before our daughter's 5th birthday.

OT: I can still remember it vividly because our daughter, Katherine, had a birthday party planned on that Saturday, but I was still in the hospital then, so my little sister, Wendy, stepped in for me and played Mom for the party.

I also remember Katherine melting down one evening because she missed me and it was sooo hard. I tried to distract her by changing the subject and asking if her very pregnant guinea pig had had her babies. She dropped the phone to go look and then just squealed. Do you know that that dern guinea pig had 4 babies sitting there. Then she forgot all about me and we both had lighter hearts. :-)

JWren's picture
Posts: 12
Joined: Oct 2012

I'm new to the group, but I have always thought that you become a survivor the moment you live thru the doctor telling you that you have cancer.

Posts: 42
Joined: Oct 2012

I feel its all different, my husband thinks of the day we knew I had breast cancer as the first of healing, my day was sept 21 2012, im still not healed from surgery but I do consider the day it was all removed as my start date, but like someone else posted everyday we are still here is a "thriver" day.

laughs_a_lot's picture
Posts: 1369
Joined: Mar 2011

The first day I came here I did not claim the term survivor but I knew it would only be a matter of days before I considered myself a survivor. I came here a day or two after my diagnosis. I figured I became a survivor the day I began to seek information on what my journey could look like (which was like my second day here).

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