Today I was diagnosed with brest cancer. I have a 3cm infiltrating ductal carcinoma tumor, rt breast. So far I have 1 lymph node under the same arm that tested positive for cancerous cells. I meet with my surgeon on monday followed by an MRI on tuesday and the oncologist later in the week. This is soooooooo overwhelming that my head is spinning!! I am only 40 years old. Please, if anyone has had a breast cancer diagnosis please send me some words of encouragement and also any advice you may have!! I thank you in advance.
No say it isn't so. Three days, what if i need you, what am I to do? Okay I am just gonna have to "man up" and I am sure I will be fine :)
Thanks fo rthe really sweet compliments. I guess that is what life is all about being there for eachother, and God knows you have been there for me. You are so right about this site it has been instrumental in this healing process for me.
As for chemo, I am on a dense dose regimen. I go every 2 wks. So I go again on Wed. I can hardly wait! NOT!!!!! I am just starting to feel normal. Aside from the stomach problems (i will spare you the details) in the morning, I actually feel fairly normal for now. And they will hit me again and mess me all up, but atleast it killin cancer!
By the way I picked up this awesome book you may have heard of it but I got it from a christian book store and it's called Dear God, They Say Its Cancer. Its a book for women on the breast cancer journey. I cant put it down. It has prayers and women telling their stories. It's AWESOME!!
Im sure I will post to you before Saturday. I am actually thinkin of how bummed Im gonna be for the few days but as you instructed I will be TOUGH!! I will remember what you said "chemo is not for sissies" I just LOVE that, cus it's soooo true.
Well my new best friend and sister in faith be well, and know that you are TRULY a blessing to me. Happy remodeling!!
Well, actually, I will still be on the air for a few more days. We did not get the computer room cleaned out and prep so we will be able to chat for another week or so before we have to unhook everything. I hate remodeling but it will be so nice when we get done. Well OH AWESOME ONE, I must retire. It has been a long day and painters will be here at 6:00 in the morning. I think I'll crash for the night. until then tah tah. I'm sure I'll chat with ya tomorrow.
hi, i hope to give you words of encouragement also. i just joined this site. i also had breast cancer in 2001. it can be a rough ride at times. i had a lumptectomy instead of mastectomy. i sometimes wish i had a mastectomy as i unfortunately keep having biopsies due to calcifications. my cancer was a lump though. so calcifications, although i have plenty have proven so far to be benign. i had cmf chemo, radiation and tamoxifen. now on femara. i try to keep positive and im learning through all of this that its best to take one day at a time. i have spent too many days, weeks and years worrying and it hasnt changed the outcome. so now as i face another possible biopsy due to another cluster of calcs, i try to tell myself it will be fine as all the others. so we are all facing stuff. you are not alone. be well
That is kind of a strange side effect. I know you can get blisters in your mouth and throat. A sore mouth is suppose to be one of the biggest problems with chemo, although not everyone gets it. My throat feel like someone took a rake in there and raked the heck out of it. I hated that part more than anything else. But for what it is worth, I got purple spots under my toenails. The doctor didn't know what to think. But eventually they all went away. So If you are still concerned, don't be afraid to talk to your doctor. It is always best to make a simple phone call. But I think they will go away. I think it is just a side effect of the chemo.
When I go to the dentist, he always feels around my mouth for lumps. He says quite often cancer will show up in the mouth before it is evident elsewhere. So if you feel any lumps be sure to tell your doctor. After chemo, you will need to see your dentist because, it can cause problems with your teeth and gums. My gums are now very tender and I have to use a medicinal mouthwash and tooth paste. Prescription strenth. But make sure your blood count is back up to normal before you do it. I know it is all frightening but best to be aware of what could be there.
You are going to find out that chemo will leave you with alot of strange aches and pains, and sensations long after it's done and over. Your legs and joints will hurt. A strange thing happened to me. My sinuses more than doubled in size. the doctor couldn't figure out what what wrong. I was so sick and thought it was going to kill me. It was horrible. Then I went to an ENT specialist and he ordered a CT Scan. That's how we found out what was wrong. He put me on steroid Prednisone and it took care of the problem. However, I no longer have the smell and taste senses. You will also find that you will need a eye exam. Your vision may worsen. But you have to wait at least six months after chemo to do that.
So anyways, life will never quit be the same but what is our alternative. :)
sorry I took so long to get back to you. I was so exausted yesterday. remodeling isn't what it's crapped up to be. My husband isn't happy with me now. I spent a $1000.00 on paint and now I don't like the colors. Nothing like remodeling to put a hitch in relationship. It's just so hard when you think you have it figured out and then get home and get the paint on the wall and realize you have just made a bigggg mistake. Oh well. So it goes.
Well, you hang in there and I will check back again today. Try not to be two concerned about your mouth. Just call your doctor.
take care sammie aka tami
Also wanted to mention to you that it would be wise to purchase a binder and some page protectors and keep records of all your medical stuff. I have a friend who went through treatment 35 years ago with ovarian cancer and then a year ago, was diagnosed with breast cancer. There is only so much treatment you can have in a life time. she was in a panic because she hadn't seen her oncologist for 30 years or so. Wasn't sure if he was even alive and even if he was alive, did he have her records. Amazingly enough, he actually remembered her because she used a cutting edge treatment. He remembered how much and everything. But that would be rare. so make sure you ask for a copy of all reports and lab work. everything. Just file them in your binder so if you ever have to do this again, God Forgid. check in with ya later. sammie/tami
The mouth thing is a very common side effect of chemo. The cells inside your mouth are very fast to develop, so they are affected by the chemo just like your hair cells. What you have in your mouth is like the "thrush" some of your children may have gotten when they were babies. My oncologist prescribed something called "miracle mouthwash" which was a concoction he had come up with that combined a number of things. Unfortunately, I can't remember what they were. The "miracle mouthwash" only did a fair job. What really worked for me was a teaspoon of salt and two teaspoons of baking soda in a glass of warm water. I would swish that around my mouth for about 30 seconds at least twice a day, or more often if my mouth was really hurting. I got that recipe from an on-line site that deals with chemo and the side-effects. I don't remember the site address (over 4 years now), but I'm sure if you google chemotherapy side-effects you will get to the site. I will try to find the site and give you the address.
I was so happy when I logged on and got your messages. Okay about the tongue today in church I showed my tongue to a 10 year survivor and she said it was definately a side affect of chemo because she had areas in her mouth turn purple as well.
So that was a relief, but now I am concerned about something you mentioned. You said your dentist always checks your mouth for lumps. Well it just so happens that a few years ago I noticed a lump on the lower side of gums. Not very big and it has never grown. So I went to my dentist and inquired I told him that my bottom teeth seemed slightly shifted and I told him about the lump. Well he examined my mouth and assured me that the lump was definately not a tumor. He said it was something called tori. Bony growth normally found on the gums and under the tongue. He said I had tori under the tongue as well. When I looked tori up on the internet its sounds like what I have but now Im wondering if its not something more. The reason I am concerned is because sometimes when I swallow I feel a pop in my throat. I went to my ears nose and throat doc for that. They went down my throat 3 times with a scope and said there were no obstructions and everything looked normal. I have also had a ct scan of the area and even a endoscopy and everything came back normal. I guess since this breast cancer drama EVERYTHING seems to concern me. Plus before the breast cancer dx I was a hypocondriac!! Not good i know. Well anyway my ENT said he thought it was my ligaments but since all scans and xrays were good he did not know what to make of it. I am praying that Im fine.
I have a binder but I am sooo disorganized I have yet to put anything in it but since you made the suggestion I will be better at staying on top of it and getting organized. I will be praying for your friend Im sure she will be fine. And what luck to have found those records after 30 years!! Had to be God!
Sorry to hear about the paint. That REALLY STINKS!! Can you work with it for a years or so or is it that bad?? Im sure things will work out. Maybe you will get use to it or not, either way it will work out eventually.
Well I should let you rest your eyes. Thanks for listening and keep the direction and advice commin my way. Thank you for everything.
I didn't mean to scare you. The last thing I want you to do is worry more than you have too. Well, I went to the dentist after he told me about lumps in the mouth. I was freaked out because I found a lump in the roof of my mouth. So of course, I just knew it was cancer. Come to find out, it was natural bone growth. He said that sometimes when we age our bones will sometimes develop boney knobs and such. It has not grown since so I'm not too worried. I think you are fine. If the CT Scan was normal, I wouldn't worry to much. Just tell your doctor about it the next time you go in so he can look at it. It sounds like tori is most likely the source. Sometimes our teeth don't mature and move as they should also. I tend to agree with the dentist. I don't think there is any thing to worry about. If it grows or changes, then yes, by all means, check into it. the fact that it is not growing is a very good sign. Don't loose to much sleep over this one.
As far as the throat is concerned, a ligament makes total sense. I sometimes have something shift in my throat too. I think it's probably the same thing you are discribing. Again, I wouldn't worry too much. I know its hard when we are in this situation. Those darn "what if's" will drive us insane. Your cancer is early stage and most likely has not spread. YOu only had one lymph node that was positive. The most likely places the breast cancer will spread to is liver, lungs, bones, and brain. Always check for lumps in your neck. Well, I m not your oncologist, but I think you are in pretty good shape for now. All you need to worry about now is getting through chemo. After that, it gets much easier to cope with. Right now, ev erything is so fresh and overwhelming. The first year, you don't even have time to think cuz everything moves so fast.
Maybe this will help you. I don't mean to turn this into a sermon, but Christ was the biggest example for us to live by. One of the principles he taught was line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little, there a little. In otherwords, one step at a time. Little baby steps are best. So just get ready for you next chemo. Just think, it will be round two. One more step closer to being done. Worrying will not change anything. When I finally came to that realization, I don't stress about it so much. It is what it is. I was so freaked out about death. Now, I have come to realize that death is our friend. It brings us relief from pain and suffering.
Tracey, you have a very good attitude about all this. I know you are scared and concerned but your coming along great. One day, you will be so grateful for all you have learned and gained from this. You will be such a blessing to someone else who is just diagnosed and scared like you. There is a song out there for breast cancer patients called, "My Shepard Will Supply My Need." If you have a chance to get it, it is a very comforting song. I listen to it all the time when I am scared. Then I am not so scared. If you can't find it, I will get it for you.
Well, I love ya girl. I love chatting with ya. Maybe someday, our paths will cross. Wouldn't that be wonderful. Stranger things have happened. Take care, sammie
All I can say is that if I can one day give an ounce of what you have given to me to someone else, then that person will be in good shape! Thanks so much for always coming to my rescue. I REALLY mean it when I say that you have been the best sister a girl could ask for.
Yes the crazy thoughts come and go. I just got off a brain cancer web site (what did I do that for). I have to STOP lookin for trouble. As the saying goes if your lookin for trouble your gonna find it. Any way I struggle every day to not allow the enemy to manipulate my thoughts but it can be hard. My morning time in prayer and reading has been GREAT comfort for me. I KNOW he is with me carrying me through this process. Now if I could get my mind to know that everything would be much better.
And yes you are correct. Round 2 is on Wed. YIPPEEE I can hardly wait! NOT!! But I guess you are right it is indeed one step closer. I will be half way done for now. In June I have the surgery. I wont know the details until I finish chemo. I am wonering if I should have a double mastectomy. My surgeon says I should not but I know it's my choice. I, just like everyone else dont want to be at this place again.
I really am tryin to have a good atitude it's so hard sometimes. I find myself being irritated at the smallest things. Then I have to bring myself back in and remember not to sweat the small stuff and as someone said before it's all small stuff. I know there is purpose in all I am going through. I must remember I am on a path to wellness.
Thanks for the scripture and also I am gonna go to the christain book store and look for that song. I need ALL the help I can get!! YOU ROCK MY SISTER!!
By the way about our paths crossing. Im a flight attendant so thats a done deal!!
I am so tired tonight. If you don't mind, it will post tomorrow. It is 7:30 p.m. and we have been going since 6;30 this morning. I achey, tired, and grouchy. Please forgive me.
You Rock My Sister, too!!!!
Love ya like my favorite chocolate bar! ;0)
Thank you for saying such kind and cherished things to me. You are such a wonderful person yourself. I am glad you are claiming me for a sister. I could use one.
I am glad you have made reading and prayer part of your treatment plan. It's the best there is.
I understand how you want to check things out on the Internet. However, I learned really quick that it wasn't a good idea to look up to much stuff about cancer. It overwhelmed very quickly. But I think it is good to be informed on what you are going through and what to expect in the future. Good or bad...
Mastectomy. wow. I had two lumpectomies. I wish that I would have had both breasts taken off. I have such sore and painful tissue. It is even hard for me to wear a bra. After you go through radiation, your breast becomes very firm and is tender. It's been over a year since I finished radiation and my breast is still so sore. Some ladies complain about it as much as five years later. But again, compared to the alternative you do what you have to. Personally, if I were you and you have to have one breast removed, I would do both and reconstruct both for more perfect and uniform breasts. It is covered by insurance. Besides, I constantly worry about monthly breast exams and fear of missingf a lump. Mine are so dense. And I have several cysts. I am in constant pain. Breast exams are even painful. I dread them. That's how painful mine are. So something to consider. I think I would be much happier if I would have had them removed and reconstructed. Maybe less worry.
And don't worry, we all get irritated. It will get worse before it is over. I was bedridden so much. I thought I would go crazy. Then one day whlile going through chemo, I lost it when I asked my 11 year old daughter if she could go get me some yogurt or something out of the fridge. She said,"well, why can't you go get it yourself." I was mortified that my child was so selfish. Needless to say, i said something I shouldn't have. I know she must have felt overwhelmed herself but I couldn't believe she was so insensitive. I was so sick. So we all have those irritated days. You will just see more of them right now. It is so hard I know. But you are right, there is a reason why you are going through this. God has great plans for you.
I am going to take you up on making our paths cross. I think it is meant. We will have to contact Medhelp to find out how to make closer contact without violating privacy terms. :) There must be a way.
Well Miss Wonderful, good luck 2moro. You will be on my mind and in my prayers. I hope it is not so rough on you this time. Big No. 2 How many treatments do you have to take. Mine were ever three weeks for six treatments.
Well, Tracey, I have been a bit exausted lately so I'm going to hang out in my recliner for the afternoon and rest up. I'm dragging these days. take care and lots of love coming your way. Tami
Well I will say that I have learned my lesson about looking up too much info. Im done with that, going lookin for trouble is not a good idea. :(
Thanks so much for your input on the mastectomy. Your advise really means alot to me. It's funny that you talked of wishing you had had a double because I am really leaning in that direction. Just about every women who has had a mastectomy has told me that they wish that they had had a double. I am just thinking that for me it is something to really consider. I just assume have a lil less worry in my life plus boobs that look the same. All my friends think Im crazy but they dont understand becuase they are not where I am. I will be on hormone drugs plus herceptin and for that reson alone no boobs sounds better than 1 boob. I would have reconstruction later down the road. Do you know if implants are possible after radiation, or will the skin be too tight??
As for chemo, I am doing dose dense. Four rounds. So tomorrow I will be half way done. With 2 more to go. In june I will have the surgery followed by more treatment and radiation. Wow just typing it sounds overwhelming!! But if its gonna get the boogie man out of my body than Im all for it!! You were so right about just when you start to feel like a human again, it's back off to the "good poison factory" again. My stomach and bowels (sorry 4 the details) are just starting to be normal. Oh well as once said by a very wise women "chemo is not for sissies"! :)
The last few days Ive been better with my irritation. I make a choice to relax a little before I respond. But I do have my human moments.
Well, my sister in many ways. If ya have more advice or info please send them my way, I get so happy when I log on and I have a post from you. Thanks for thinkin of me and taken me under your wing you have been an AMAZING source of comfort for me. I so look foward to meeting you one day. I will let cha know how chemo goes. I am hoping that the carafate and protonix will help me, please pray with me that it does. Thank you for all the praying you have already done for me (it's better than medicine) and I will continue to do the same for you!
Hi there! I am just catching up on posts since i was gone on vacation..i am 40 also...i JUST got done with my chemo last month. I ended up having a mastectomy on my left side with immediate start of reconstruction (chest expander)...its a whirlwind of a few months but it sounds like you have gotten great advice already...here are some of the things i did.....
regarding your sore mouth..i used Bioten (you can get it at a drug store) its a medicated mouthwash sold otc...use it at least twice a day. the stuff really worked for me, although the thicker consistancy was kind of gagging...
water...i drank Penta because every single other water tasted like pond scum...you can get that at a health food store and some grocery stores.....and also if it still tastes bad, i used a lot of crystal light...(although i never want to drink lemonaide again :)..)...it got me to drink...
i recommend NOT eating your favorite foods because once your chemo is over, you may never like them again....the thought of ketchup makes me shutter now.....
stay positive...my motto was "suck it up"....get thru one day at a time...
i found that the neulasta shot actually made me feel worse. I stopped taking it and felt better BUT played russian roulet with getting sick (i never did)....
I personally LOVE my wigs....i ended up with 4....why not?????? anyway, theyre fun and convienent...but yes they do get hot...BUT then you can have fun whipping it off and freaking people out.....oh and one last wig advice...dont fall into the ocean with one on, the synthetic ones dont really feel good afterward.....hehe...
You will do fine. You are strong and you WILL beat this.
You are right, your friends are not in your shoes. you have to do what is best for you. In fact, if I wasn't so sick from other stuff, I would still have it done and may in the future. But right now, the doctor doesn't want me doing an surgery unless it is life saving or an emergency.
Personally, I like the idea of fresh new boobs. As far as I know, you can do the reconstruction about 6 months after treatment. Definitely after chemo because of the blood count problem. The skin should still stretch. Maybe not as much but women reconstruct after treatment all the time. Each individual is a little different but I think you will be okay.
The "good ole poison factory" that's exactly wht it is. Amazing huh??? But funny what we will do to live.
Girl, you are no sissy!!!
I hope your tummy will do better. It took me a couple of treatments before mine got to be not so bad. You will still have some discomfort even on the carafate and protonics but you will still be better off, so hang with it. Protect that stomach lining.
Well, again, good luck tomorrow and I will be anxious to hear from you when you feel well enough to post. Hands to Heaven!!!
Thank you for all of your support too. Im still in this fight myself.
You are way to funny. I agree with everything you said. Great advice!!! You hit the nail on the head. I know someone too, who kept shaving her head after treatment because she was having to much fun with wigs.
good luck with your journey.
It does get easier now.
Hey, I have been reading some posts about lymphedema. I am understanding that if you have had even one lymph node removed, you can develop lymphedema. I guess this can be a problem if you fly on an airplane. I don't know why. But they are saying that you need to wear a sleeve when you fly to prevent lymphedema. Once you develop it, you have it for life. It can effect your arm, armpit, hand, chest, and I think maybe neck. Please ask your doctor about this. I knew nothing about flying and lymphedema until today. I wonder why flying brings this on. Anyways, you may have already known this but just in case I am letting you know. I care about you. May the force be with you today.
GIT ER DONE!!!
I just love you Tami! You are always lookin out for me I feel so special. I have heard that flying does increase lymphedema, and I will get that sleeve just in case. I have a friend who is also a flight attendant and she is 7 yrs out. She didnt have a problem but I will proceed with caution. Thanks for the heads up!
Well here it goes I will be off to the good poison factory in just a few hours so pray for me please. You have made me smile today, and as you say I am gonna GIT ER DONE!!!!
I will post later to let cha know how it goes! Love ya REALLY mean it!!!
Thanks so much for your post! I am getting ready for round 2 of 4 today. I would love to chat with you about your journey. I hope you dont mind I will post later with some questions.
I will definately try the crysal light cus water make me want to (i will spare you the dateails). Anyway that is great advice.
So they put the expanders in at the time of the mastectomy?? Does it make you look like you have a lil boob action goin on?? I know its a strange question but I dont want to bother with prostetics until I get the implants.
Okay I will post later and thanks soooooooo much for you input. I am trying to take it all in and knowing that I have sisters out there who care makes it a lil easier I know you can relate. God bless you.
yup, they put the expander in at the time of the surgery. filled it with about 60 cc's of saline. every week i went back and they injected another 60 cc's...all in all its up to 600 ccs...(about a can and 1/2 of soda)...it looks odd as it is quite high and not centered but they have to make the cavity as large as they can to get a natural look once the final implant goes in...it depends on how large chested you were to begin with...i was a small B at 112 lbs, so the tram flap wasnt even an option. I met with one surgeon who wanted to wait 6 months AFTER the mastectomy and there was NO way i was waiting that long...so i found another surgeon who did it following my mastectomy! i have never been happier....i love all of my doctors....(my boob surgery is may 6th...just a few days away)..
truely, for me, it did not hurt. my chest feels very tight and i do get some muscle cramping on my side, but i look 'somewhat' normal...i have every confidence that after next weeks surgery that i will be on my way to being symetrical again....
I just got back from 2 weeks in hawaii and before i left i had posted regarding flying and lymphodema....and got a wide variety of responses....i went to my doctor and he said that i should be fine...i was...i was told to move my arm a bit and stretch. I had no problems..i also only had about 10 removed...(one sentinal was positive)...my arm is fine. i guess the best answer is to ask YOUR doctor anything and everything and trust him/her...
how are you doing with the port? mine hurt so bad that i wanted to rip it out of my chest...i didnt (but the thought made me feel better)...i also named it ''The Goider"..
You have a way with words you are so funny, "The Goider"! I love it. How funny is that. I never thought about naming my port. I need some time to come up with something clever.
Okay back to the boobs I am a D cup but I dont want big boobs. I am leaning towards a double masyectomy and a small C after its all said and done. I definately want implants. Are you getting saline or silacone? Unfortunately I have to get radiation therapy so it throws a lil more into the course of action for me. Did the expander give you any appearence of a breast? I REALLY dont want to do the prostetic thing for 6 mos
Wow you are getting ready to get your implant, AWESOME!! Just days away I cant wait to hear how much you love the new boob!!
I will definately get the lympedema sleeve. We will see what happens with that.
So you were not in alot of pain after the masectomy??
Wow hawaii AWESOME im sooooooooooooooooooooooooooo jealous!!!
Hope to hear from ya soon thanks so much for the info.
Well round 2 is done. I Got er done! :) My tummy is feelin a little strange so im gonna lay down. But I am praying I wont be sick this time or atleast not as sick! My blood count was good and the tumor is responding so thats good.
I will try to get back on tonight or surely by tomorrow. Thanks Tami, our friendship has become very special to me and you have blessed me more that you know.
i am doing the new silicone gels..i didnt need radiation since i had a mastectomy...why do you? i was told that if all the tissue is removed then radiation isnt necessary...i was really sore after the mastectomy...BUT i had my doctor put in a subQ pack which gave me continuous numbing mediicine (kinda like novicain) for 5 days...that was a blessing after i went home and had no more morphine...you will be uncomfortable and yes you will hurt, but you will not die from the pain...its not that bad....dont forget to do your arm exercises!! seriously!!
oh i forgot....you know what did hurt me??? underneath my shoulder blade...i think more from the position of my arm during surgery...have a heating pad ready...that helped..
yes, the expander gives the impression of a very off kilter boob.if you are doing both then you at least will be even. since i only had one done, i am waaay unsymectrical..lets put it this way...in hawaii, floating in the water with my bald head and my uneven chest, i felt like a jacked up bouy..bobbin' away at a goofy angle..sigh.. i SO miss my ponytail..
regarding the surgery.. .i am ready for it to be over with...its been an odd but yet uplifting journey. Im not sure that i would change anything (okay maybe the bald thing and the pukey feeling and the horrid taste in my mouth and the mouth sores and the diarreah and and and.........) i feel better for it, strange as that may sound. my life is my life and it just needs to be lived to the fullest....
Its a hard journey and places like this that give helpful tips and insight are priceless. It surely is a journey that makes you mentally stronger...you HAVE to be strong, 'cause the alternative truely sucks.
Hey, I just had icecream. Is that funky or what. I love my icecream so if you love me that much, I must be pretty special!!! :)
Your friendship means alot to me also. More than you will ever know. I think our paths crossed for a reason. Without saying a whole lot, you have been a life saver to me. I am saying this with tears in my eyes. I have been through alot in just the last 8 months. Totally unrelated to cancer. I have been mouning the loss of my extended family. Long story but I really needed someone in my life to help fill the gap and you my sister, had filled that void quite a bit. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
I really hope your tummy gets to feeling better soon. And I am very glad the tumor is responding well. Anyone with cancer will be so happy for you. Keep hanging in there. You are doing great so far. I am going to be jealous of your new boobs. When I get to feeling stronger, maybe I will persue that too. But for now, I'm still trying to get on my feet. It has been an extra long recovery for me. Well, YOu get some sleep tonight. Sweet dreams and we will talk to ya in the morning.
Love ya like I'd love new boobs :) lol Tami
How is day 2 of round two? You were the first person I thought of this morning. Actually, you are always on my mind. Just wondering how ya feeling. Post me when ya feel up to it. Remember, you are not a sissy. Doesnt mean ya still can't feel crumby.
Take it easy. Tami
Well I cant even begin to tell you how tired I am. But I thank God that I am not sick like I was the last time. My belly was just a little upset but I am NOT complaining I just thank God that he answers prayers!! I thank I am so tired because I only slept a few hours last night and I was running around all morning when I should have been resting!
I feel so blessed to have a friend like you!!!!!!! Everything happens for a reason doesn't it Tami. You have helped me more than you can imagine. I saw that you left me a message when I finish my nap I will read it and quickly respond.
Love ya more than pizza!!!! And thats the truth girlfriend :)
I forgot to tell you that the reason that I have to have radiation is because my tumor was 3 cm and also the calcium in breast was positive as well. But the thank for all the info on the expander becuase implants is DEFINATELY the way im goin.
Let me know how your surgery goes Im sure everything will be fine.
I am glad you are doing better this time. I am not surprized you didn't get much sleep. I never slept the night before chemo. I understand your tireness. Do whatever you have to do to get your rest. The posts can wait. Just take care of yourself. I have been running myself ragged lately too. It really catches up with you and knocks you down. you have even a bigger reason to be more tired.
Take it easy and don't push yourself too much.
Love ya more than ya know :) And that's the truth girlfriend:)
I was 45 when I was diagnosed in October '06. My tumor ended up being 2cm, invasive ductal carcinoma *and* ductal carcinoma in situ. It was 2 on the aggressive scale (moderate) and estrogen positive. I had 0 lymph nodes involved - the sentinel node biopsy was negative in all pathology. This all said - I was shocked... there isn't any recent history of breast cancer in my family (recent as in the last 3 generations... no one knows if the great-great-great generation had any instances of bc). I felt as if my life suddenly were taking place in some other time and being lived out by some other person. My medical team - surgeon, reconstructive surgeon and oncologist - all urged me to enter treatment within 4 weeks of diagnosis. I chose to have a mastectomy with immediate reconstruction, thus I did not have radiation as part of my treatment plan. If any of my nodes had been positive, the plan would have chanaged and I would not have had immediate reconstruction.
I want to encourage you on so many different levels. One thing that is very important for you to know about is a new surgical procedure known as Skin Sparing Mastectomy. This is what I was able to have and let me tell you - my reconstructed breast is very, very attractive. The surgeon removes the nipple and then removes all the breast tissue. the reconstructive plastic surgeon then places a silicon implant under your pectoral muscle and sews up the area where your nipple was using what looks like a beggar's purse closure. It is smooth, evenly balanced with your other breast, has a very small scar, and depending on the size of your areola, you can see a hint of a nipple. It is as natural looking as we who have had mastectomies can get. Please ask your surgeon about it before making any decisions about reconstruction.
I also want to encourage you on a spiritual and emotional level. Every cancer journey is different. My doctor's each told me this, and I would still compare mine to others trying to find something that I could apply and then understand. But the reality is this: your cancer journey will be your cancer journey. The good news is you have sisters in survivorship to cheer you on along the way and to share our stories to help you cope. You're going to have some really confusing and crummy days... and you're going to have some truly heroic and celebratory days. Listen to your medical team. Ask questions. Join a support group. And be certain to find women within your age group who you can talk with - because one thing I did learn is that at 45, my cancer expectations were very different from women in their late 60's or eary '70's. I needed to talk with women who still had active careers and children to be raised. At the same time, the older women had great life wisdom to share in general.
You and I share the same name... we now share breast cancer. I've made it - you will too.
Thank you so much for the kind words. Every positive word gives me hope and strength and it makes me feel stronger.
I will most definately ask my surgeon about a skin sparing mastectomey. I am really leaning towards a double mastectomy. My tumor was 3 cm. My doc says the tumor has gotten soft sense starting chemo so we are not exactly sure how much smaller it's gotten. I still have 2 more rounds of chemo before the surgery.
Thanks for the wise words. I am in a young support group called beyond boobs and it has really helped to talk with women within our age group. This site has also been a HUGE help in this journey. My prayer is that this journey will carry me to wellness along with the best person I can be. I want to hold my hand out to the next sister who comes along.
Again thank you so much for caring enough to respond. I am posting every step of he way and I hope to hear from you again.
I am sooooooooo sleepy I never took a nap because my sister who talks so loud I think she may be tone death stopped by with my niece and 7 mos old nephew. It was so nice to see them but I really wasnt up for the visit.
Now I really am gonna lay down before I pass out. I am so lookin foward to reading your message something tells me it's gonna tug at my heart and make me cry in a sweet way. Our friendship is a special sisterhood. How cool is that!
How ya doing this morning? Just thought I would drop ya a line before I get going on this remodeling project. As of tomorrow @ 6:00 a.m southeastern Idaho standard time. :)
It is so sunny and beautiful today for a change. Im getting sick of this 70 degree weather one day and snowing and blowing the next. aaarrrrggghhhhh. Okay, I admit it. I am a sissy when it comes to snow. I hate it. But you and I would agree, there are worse things in this world huh????
Well, I will check in from time to time today. Until then, love ya like my Dr. Pepper. I know. shame on me. I am trying to get off it.
take care and big hugs,
I have been on the couch ALL day in a sleepy daze. I wake up to eat small amounts then Im sleep again. My mom just left so im off to sleep again. I will post again later and Tami thanks for caring about me I love you for it. I hope ya know I consider you a true sister. When I awake from this lazy spell im gonna read your message and respond.
Love ya like I love diet dr pepper :) I 2 am tryin to quit
We are shutting down the computer so will be off for a couple of days. May possibly be back on tomorrow night (Saturday), but who knows for sure. Hang in there and I will still be thinking about you.
Until then,Lots of prayers, hugs and special thoughts coming your way.
I was wondering if anyone can tell me the answer to this question. I will be receiving radiation after surgery. Does this mean that I will not be able to have an expander put in for a future implant or is a tram my only option?
Aslo is there a great lotion I can use for my dry dry cuticles and heels?? Chemo is sucking ALL the moisture out of my skin!! My cuticles and heels are sooooooo dry and cracked.
I only have 1 more round of the adriamyocin cytoxan left then I will have 4 rounds of taxatere along with herceptin. Please say a prayer for me because these first rounds of the adrimyicon cytoxen have made me feel REALLY ICKY. I am hoping that the taxatere wont be as bad. The doc says she may use taxol instead of taxatere does anyone know the difference??
Well you are all in my prayers take care and thanks for any advice.
Tracey, for the nails, my oncologist recommended Tea Tree Oil by Jason Natural Products. You can find it in the drug store or Walmart. It is a Melaleuca product. Also, for the skin and heels, again a Melaleuca product called Renew. It was a life saver for me. If you can't find it let me know and I will send you some. When you put it on your feet, wear a pair of socks for a few days, even at night. It will help trap the moisture in. Renew was the only thing that worked for me. It's awesome.
I don't know anything about the expanders. I think you will be okay though because I have another friend who had tons of radiation and she had expanders. so I think you will be okay.
Love ya sis,
yes the back pain with the neulasta is normal....i had shooting pain go up my spine and also down thru my hips...it was excruciating...i was lucky to have super high white cell counts, so the last 4 rounds, i didnt have to have the shot...i felt waaaay better.
i am 10 days post reconstruction...(thats why ive been gone) and im doing great...it is extremely sore under the new boob where the new incision site is...there is a lot of stretching to do....exercise wise...
it is still super high, but hopefully it will fall soon enough so i can get the good boob done and i can be level again.....it is REALLY hard to find sundresses that work with lopsided breasts!!!
i also did the lotion with socks....it worked wonders...moisterize every time you think about it...and do your best to stay hydrated, that will help too....
Thanks for the hydration comment I really need to be better in that area!
Also about your new boob. Do tell!! Im curious because I will be there eventually. Did you do an implant or tram flap? How long did the whole process in months take? Did the surgery leave you in alot of pain? What about the nipple?
Okay enough questions for now.
Thanks for being proud of me. Im doing it cus I wanna be like you when I grow up!! :)
hahaha....if you wanna be like me, you better put a helmet on and hang on for dear life...i am THE most accident prone person on the face of this earth...BUT i have fun doing it...lol...
i had the implant done...it is a LOT softer than the expander. my doctor did not use the original mastectomy site, he did another incision where the breast crease will be...and inserted it under the muscle. the boob itself does not hurt...1. from being stretched out and 2 because a lot of nerve endings were severed....where it really really hurts is at that new incision site on the outside edges...mostly the outside edge..
when i move my arm toward the center of my body and bend down, it hurts super bad...but you can see the muscle tightening...so all it really is, is doing a lot of stretches (again)...my doctor had told me to start manipulating it that way (work thru the pain) and so far it seems to be working....it is hurting less and less....
i finally got the okay to start working out (whooo hoo)...so tomorrow is my first day back at the gym...i should be one sore little girl...however, those sore legs and bum will take my mind off the sore boob!!! ever the optomist that i am...lol....
i go back to see the plastic surgeon on the 2nd...ill let you know so far what he thinks...
all in all its not bad....its definately a cake walk compared to chemo!!!!!
ps...panda says thank you....she is the most super cool old english sheepdog in the world!!!!
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