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Looking for hope

Bethfish
Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2017

My sister in law has relapsed DCBL and is recieving R-EPOCH. She is 48 and super depressed. Im looking for anyone out there who has been through lymphoma twice and is now living a relatively full and healthy life - somone to offer words of support and hope. R u out there. She needs to know its possible to be healthy again. Thanks Beth

paella's picture
paella
Posts: 81
Joined: Jun 2012

For starters, have her look at the posting a few down from here...it's called "Introduction and Hello" from KimDee.  There have been many replies and a lot of them have to do with exactly what you're looking for.  Sorry to be brief, but it's 8:30 where I am and as a 2x lymphoma survivor I'm doing great as will you sister in law.  But I do go to bed early. 

Paella

Bethfish
Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2017

thank you!!! sweet dreams - i will look where u said. - beth

Bethfish
Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2017

I live far far away from my brother and sister lin law. Im trying to figure out how I can be helpful to her and I just dont know what to do. I do call my brother everyday and listen to him. I dont call her becasue we dont have that kind of everyday phone relationship like i do with my bro. Calling him helps her i know. As someone who has been where she is - can you offer any ideas on how i can be supportive of her?

 

lindary's picture
lindary
Posts: 695
Joined: Mar 2015

I think it is good you talk to your brother. Maybe find out when she is having a "good" day and have him give her the hpone so you can tell her "hi" and "thinking of you". You don't have to do it everytime you call your brother but I bet a short conversation with her will make her feel good. I you reall yodn't feel comfortable tlaking to her on the phone then send her a note, or a gift. If she reads, a book. If she likes teas some of her favorites.   Good luck to all of you. 

Bethfish
Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2017

thank you so much for that advice - i like how u said "good day" and i know what u mean - yes i think u r right - i will talk to her for a short bit on those days. Those are the days she is best able to take it in. And a card would be ood too. thank u so much. 

 

Hodgkinninja
Posts: 14
Joined: Jan 2017

Sometimes these situations bring a family closer in ways you would never imagine...sometimes you just have to reach out...maybe she feels the same but afraid to be shunned...prayers.

 

Bethfish
Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2017

thank you for your thoughtful words.

 

po18guy
Posts: 1101
Joined: Nov 2011

We do not want to look too far ahead. Cancer forces a focus on today - as that is all that we possess. A little perspective. I began with a 'poor' prognisis. That dropped to 'extremely poor' after an immediate relapse. Found a clinical trial that put me in remission for 4 1/2 years, but it relapsed once again, dropping my prognosis somewhere below extremely poor. Worse than that, it mutated into two sub-types, only one of which responded to treatment. Prognosis now through the floor. Dr. found a regimen that put me back in remission once agian. Worse than that, I developed treatment-related Myelo-Dysplastic Syndrome, a bone marrow cancer. "Abyssmal" is the only word that describes my prognosis. I had a stem cell transplant and now fight Graft-Versus-Host-Disease, which is essentially a variety of autoimmune diseases. From the high-dose steroids used to treat that, I now have high blood pressure and diabetes. Currently, I am also fighting a combination of Rhinovirus, Respiratory Syncytial Virus and pneumonia in my left lung. But, you know what? Life is still worth living. If your sister can, she needs to decide to fight. Cancer is the bully in the room and she cannot allow it to bully her around. Imagine: If she was admiring a river from a bridge, and fell in, would she just sink to the bottom, thinking, "Well, I guess this is it"? No! She would struggle back to the surface. Life itself is a battle. While she is fighting the cancer, she is also living - we sometimes forget that.  

Sal0101's picture
Sal0101
Posts: 132
Joined: Sep 2015

Thanks Po!  I think I needed that pep talk too!

Sharon

po18guy
Posts: 1101
Joined: Nov 2011

As to those who are stressing over relapse, it was my 5th salvage regimen that placed me back in full response. And, there are more drugs and combinations available - less toxic and more effecive - than when I went through this. Fight it!

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3524
Joined: May 2012

I recently re-watched the 2007 blockbuster movie Lone Survivor, a true story about 4 SEALS who go into a mission. One lives to go home.  He is no longer "anatomically complete", but he goes home.  Lone Survivor is the mentality a cancer patient must have, it is the mentality which Po has, and has had, these many years in his battle.   Be the "One," not "the other three."  I was in a VA clinic about 7 years ago, and met a kid in line who said he was about 24 at that time. His face was disfigured a little, you could tell from a distance, but up close, it was pretty scarred.  We got to talking. An IED had blown the side of his face off, bllew out one eye and the eye socket, etc, etc.  Reconstructive surgery.  And he was just an ordinary kid, "regular Army," infantry. Not a SEAL, not a Ranger, not any form of Special Forces.  Cheerful, telling me about his plans for the future.  That was the amazing part, his cheerfulness.

A person does not need both legs or arms to crawl out of a pit.   Often, one leg, one eye, one ear, most of the skull intact is all that is needed.  I was put in an EMS truck in 1986 blind, in effect one leg, one lung, not a lot of blood remaining.  I talked to the paramedics all the way to the E.R. I knew that if I passed out I was dead, and managed to remain conscious.   I was told later that I was dark purple.  Somehow (no doctor can explain) the next day I could see.  My leg was put back together, the lung reinflated, although breathing without a machine would take another month, and breathing normally for me will never happen again.

I view myself as nothng but lucky, blessed.  In rehab, because my right shoulder blade was broken to pieces, moving my right arm for a long time was impossible. But I got to thinking in the hospital bed that because my left leg was the one mutilated, I therefore  had a good leg on one side, and a good arm on the other -- a blessing, a way to start getting around.  Later, I listed my 'good stuff:  Both feet, both arms (below the shouders), my head and neck had no known injuries.  That inventory made me very happy, even delighted.

Today I walk normally. People who meet me and later learn of my injuries and two cancers say they never suspected that I had ever been injured or sick before. I have more stamina and less pain than most of the people I meet who are my age (I am now 60).  I take no form of pain medication, except an occassional few Advil after lawn work.

I did not post a link to the movie here because it is perhaps too violent for some, but watch "Lone Survivor Official Trailer #1" to see what is required to survive.  In the submarine survice I had the honor and opportunity to on occasion rub shoulder with SEALS.  It is what is required.

max

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