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Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

15 Nov 2022 23:34

Hello 

What I'm trying to say.. I've mastectomy, surgery went well . Im happy with the reconstruction. But now that that I have breathing space.. im not sure what's happening . I should be happy that I can move on but im feeling down.

the main issue is that I've always had anxiety . Now it's worst. Last week I cried for 4 days cause I convinced myself that I have ovarian cancer. I got tested , had a meltdown on Friday waiting for the results (was like can't go though this again , all the waiting..) it came back normal, it was all In my head..

also I don't know how to bounce back and see life as it's LIFE

It's like I learnt about a whole other world . A world filled with illness, disaster, tragedy sadness. It made me feel lot more emphatic but how to see this world as a good one again. I gravitate towards art now as I want to soak up as much beauty as possible to counterbalance

i want to be a positive person . But I'm struggling . Also I feel like I shouldn't have to try ? Is it Sg that we have to work towards? Some peope are just positive without trying . Why can't I be like that ? I also dislike myself cause I'm not positive like others.

if anyone has a good advice please let me know. 

I handled the 'cancer journey' ok. But now that it's over , I should be happy. Why am I not? I didn't think why me, before. But now I'm so sad . Why this happened to me. Me who was already anxious and at times depressed before the diagnosis. Seems somewhat unfair now. Cause this made it worst .

Any advise would be appreciated. Xx

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

17 Nov 2022 19:39 in response to Brigitta

Hi Brigitta,

I can understand how you feel, and I think it is something that is shared by many people in similar situations to yourself. If you haven't already, do have a look around the forum for other relevant discussions, particularly within the 'Moving on' section, as I'm sure there'll be others in the same boat here.

Keep finding things you enjoy and appreciating the little things, as well as taking things a day at a time.

Hopefully you'll receive more replies here soon - my reply to you will boost your post, meaning a few more people should see it.

Wishing you all the best,

Ben
Cancer Chat Moderator

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

18 Nov 2022 10:11 in response to Moderator Ben

Thank you Ben. I think the issue was I dwelled on why this has happened and why to me. It is much easier to move forward when I just accept it. Although it's a fair question, there is no answer and it's only holds one back . Thanks for responding 

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

19 Nov 2022 11:05 in response to Brigitta

Hi Brigitta

I feel all the feelings you are describing, feeling very low at the moment, I am four weeks after surgery so still on my journey.

I have happy days, sad days, days where I do not know what to feel, also feel sorry for my self.

I have two friends who are in different stages of their breast cancer journey, I find it helps to talk to them, as I feel they understand what I am going through, we support each other.

I have also joined a breast cancer charity group, I have free therapies there, they also give information about other groups that can be helpfull, speak to your MacMillan nurse, she will be able to advise you!

There are groups out there for cancer survivors, just research, it will help your mental health to be able to talk to people who have been on the same journey, you need love and support not just through the treatment, but for many years after, talking to people about their journeys helps put yours into prospective.

Before I had breast cancer I still had up and down days, I think as we get older things seem to get to us a lot easier.

Hope I have not rambled too much, but I hope you start to feel better soon,

Dawn xx

 

 

 


 

 

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

19 Nov 2022 12:44 in response to Dawn.

Thank you Dawn for responding. I have a 'cancer buddy' we meet for lunch , its nice Cause oftentimes we just talk about normal stuff actually . But at the same time can share cancer related experiences. There was a cancer event, i didnt attend . I felt like Maybe doing normal things would help me more . Maybe it's about balance.  Take care and let's be kind to ourselves Happy

 

Xx

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

19 Nov 2022 15:17 in response to Brigitta

Hi  Brigitta alot of us call it the new normal, things we have been through the old normal no longer exists, people who haven't had or got cancer can't begin to understand what we've been through. 

Trying to be positive and sure can be hard hope you can get there in the near future. 

Billy  

Ps keeping busy is a good help if you can, something to occupy you get you thinking of other things. 

Pps I'm on palative care since February 2016, managing ok keeping busy looking after my wife she has alzimers and parkinsons plus other problems and i keep house reasonably tidy, shopping and washing and few other things. 

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

19 Nov 2022 15:48 in response to Billygoatt

Thank you Billy. You're doing amazing by the sound of it

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

19 Nov 2022 16:29 in response to Brigitta

Hi Brigitta,

Apologies in advance if this turns into a rant but there'd be something wrong with you if you went through that experience and somehow turned into Mary Poppins as a result! If you'd been badly attacked by a dog, you'd expect to be even more scared of dogs after the wounds had healed. The same goes for cancer, except that's often complicated by survivor's guilt.

It is nine years since I was told cancer would kill me. Worrying that it will come back and that I'd have to go through chemo again is always at the back of my mind. By nature I'm an optimist and a risk taker but even so this fear is always lurking quietly in the background. Learning to live with it is like living on a volcanic island because, let's face it, a recurrence can never be ruled out.

My rant is over societal expectations which goes along the lines of "you've dodged a bullet - you must feel awesome about that"! Comments along these lines are often followed by talk of famous cases of celebrities who live amazing lives after "beating" cancer. The fact is their lives look fabulous in Facebook or Instagram but in the wee small hours they are as likely as you or I to wake up in a cold sweat worried by the risk of having to start that journey all over again!

Please don't be too self-critical over your fears - I'm sure we all go through this. Live grieving, it does get easier over the years and, like living by a volcano, you can live a long and happy life. That said, unlike living by that volcano, you can't just move your home to somewhere less scary!

If you can lose yourself in art, music, literature, dog walking or travel that will help balance out your negative feelings but please don't feel forced to be "practically perfect in every way"! 
 

Good luck!

Dave

 


 

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

26 Nov 2022 07:49 in response to Brigitta

Hi, I too have been struggling with "bouncing back" since my treatment finishes. There is an article by Dr Peter Harvey called "After the treatment finishes, then what?" Which I found helpful when trying to understand why I was feeling so down. Hope it helps you too in some way.

 

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

26 Nov 2022 11:11 in response to Debxyz

Thank you, I've read the article. Each and Every sentence . A true Reflection of how I feel. No recipe on how to move forward , sg Maybe that happens with time Or i need to Find the answer within. Xx

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

26 Nov 2022 14:53 in response to Brigitta

Unfortunately, and as much as I desperately want to, I haven't managed to find that secret recipe yet either. I have just had first of 6 counseling sessions with Bupa/One right, which I arranged online through the Macmillan website. So far advise given on a breathing technique and apps available (eg Headspace.) I was also asked to go through my diagnosis/treatment, how I was feeling now and what I wanted to get out of the counseling. "Just to feel like my old self" I replied (without screaming it at the top of my voice!) For the next session it will be up to me what I want to talk about. Early days and don't think there are any quick fix solutions, guess it's about learning to accept life may never feel the same (I have a lot of feelings of grief around this and cry a lot too) and learn how to manage the emotions and thoughts you are left with. I have stopped beating myself up about not feeling positive, it becomes exhauting and just another thing to feel anxious about! I hope you find ways that help you through this tough time. xx

Struggling with life post treatment. Advice much appreciated

26 Nov 2022 17:45 in response to Debxyz

❤️Thank you! I guess They did their best as humanly possible to help us. I Will work on finding a way. When i think of others around me I try harder. I try to limit the impact why would my loved ones suffer too. But sometimes i get Self-centered in my misery..  

Hopefully we'll feel better with time 

Xx